Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Disco 2009

Last Thursday was a gig I'd been looking forward to for ages; the label Italians Do It Better taking over Koko, with Lindstrom, Glass Candy and Desire. It's a label I've been listening to pretty much constantly for the last few months, and one of those songs that I DJd back in the Club Rees days which was almost always followed up with an enquiry from a curious punter. The genre Italodisco has its roots in the clubs of late 1970s and 1980s southern Europe; as its name suggests, it incorporates some of the disco motifs of synthesisers, but mixes them into a spacey, trippy and altogether more chilled-out mood. That's not to say it's not without some absolutely corking tunes however. It emerged as music entirely made electronically was in its infancy; and the clubbing scene as we know know was it just taking off. Its recent revival hasn't involved much of a change of sound, but since the interest in electro has risen through the indie scene, a similar indie mindset of ephemeral and unusual approaches has been sought. Mike Simonetti's record label Italians Do It Better has been one of the spearheads of this movement. Along with established Swedish DJ and Producer Lindstrom, his bands have brought this sounds back. Seeing them in the theatrical environment of Koko, whose sparse but bass-heavy sound system finally sounded it it element was an absolute dream. I'd been on the verge of ordering a massive package of CDs from his Viva Italians store, and had even arranged for a US address for them to be sent to thus avoiding $40 of international shipping, but once I realised he'd be playing here, I put that on hold and decided to hit the merch stand here. Luckily, the lovely Megan Louise from Desire was on the stand, and even signed my CD. I also picked up this tshirt. In all my years of festivals and gigs, I'd never yet felt compelled to buy a band tshirt, so for me this was a real exception. And the music of Desire, Glass Candy and Lindstrom was so on the button, that I stayed far too late on a school night, and didn't even mind Koko's extortionate beer prices as much as I would normally have. It was an unmissable Staple, and I'll definitely be on the lookout for more of the same. Other Staples this week:
A night of gorgeous Italodisco at Koko
Monochrome Gingham
Lunching by the river
'The Way We Wore: A Life in Threads' by Robert Elms
Desire's album, II
The Jerusalem Tavern in Farringdon
Bourbon biscuits

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