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Indian E-music – The right mix of Indian Vibes… » David Pollock

Cult heroes: Optimo (Espacio) – the club night that defied expectation and defined a generation

Delivered... David Pollock | Scene | Tue 11 Oct 2016 1:38 pm

Keith McIvor and Jonnie Wilkes ran Optimo in Glasgow for well over a decade and influenced dance music experimentation way beyond the city

The 2010 general election ended 13 years of Labour government. And as Gordon Brown saw out his last days at No 10, another 13-year reign was coming to an end in Glasgow.

Since 1997, the club night Optimo (Espacio) had defined the musical landscape of Glasgow, and its influence spread far beyond the city. It exerted its own pull on flash-in-the-pan genres such as electroclash and punk-funk, before seeing them off; its wild and enduringly knowledgable eclecticism melded techno, electro, no-wave, post-punk, Afrobeat, psych-rock, cleverly curated pop classics and more. The final night fell on the last Sunday in April, just before the election; one fan in Glasgow caught the zeitgeist when he altered a David Cameron campaign poster to read: “Optimo (Espacio) 1997-2010: Getting out before the Tories get in.”

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LCD Soundsystem – 10 of the best

Delivered... David Pollock | Scene | Wed 11 May 2016 10:47 am

James Murphy’s pioneering dance-punk project began with him singing about midlife crises. Yet they were always ready to fill the dancefloor, too

“I’m losing my edge / the kids are coming up from behind,” half-mutters James Murphy, for the opening lyrics of the first track he released as LCD Soundsystem. Over the next four minutes he both predicted the shape of his own career and deflected many of the criticisms that might be levelled at it; that he’s a middle-aged hipster with an overstuffed record bag into which he’s only too happy to dive. He’s admitting every charge against him, but qualifying his admission: “Don’t I have great taste?” Losing My Edge was released in 2002 on a wave of rising hype for Murphy. After co-producing David Holmes’ raw-sounding 2000 album Bow Down to the Exit Sign, he and former UNKLE member Tim Goldsworthy joined Jonathan Galkin in forming DFA Records, scoring an early, scuzzy hipster hit with the Rapture’s House of Jealous Lovers. Recorded with longstanding collaborator Nancy Whang and Spank Rock’s Alex Epton, Losing My Edge was meant to be a one-off, a reaction – as he told journalist John Doran at the time – to the fear he felt that being “the cool rock disco guy” would come to a crashing end. “It became a wider thing about people who grip on to other people’s creations like they are their own,” he said, reflecting on his own DJ career. “There is a lot of pathos in that character, though, because it’s born out of inadequacy and love.” The lyric begins amid comedy, as Murphy haughtily proclaims over a skipping drum machine beat that he was at every key moment in the birth of western underground music, and ends in distorted euphoria as he bellows a litany of his key influences, from Todd Terry to Joy Division and Sun Ra to “the Sonics! The Sonics! The Sonics! The Sonics!” It was some calling card.

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