Defcon @ Birrarung Marr, Melbourne (10/11/07)
Sun 11th Nov, 2007 Event Reviews 3686 viewsin
Birrarung Marr is rapidly becoming one of the best used public spaces for dance parties in the CBD. Future have run numerous events, including the recent Parklife, but it was a bit of s surprise when Nee Culture popped out of relative obscurity to schedule Defcon by the mighty Yarra.
A stunning day was on show as we arrived at 3:30pm, and it was perhaps a little too warm to stop and dance to Dave Newsum, who had a small band of followers braving the sun on the Headquarters dancefloor. We wandered up the top of the hill to the Acadeny house and electro stage, where Alex Papps played an elongated set – I think Firefox may have bailed. A cool breeze blew through punters as they lazily danced to a backdrop of the city.
After a bit, we wandered next door to see Sam Young on the Platoon hard dance stage, and people were going nuts; a trend which did not seem to change as the day wore on. The organisers had left coverings off this and the main floor, and the result was like a bush doof in the city. The floor was slippery enough to make sliding easy, like gritty sand on clay. Note to the event organisers; this is AWESOME to dance on, a Melbourne shuffler’s nirvana! All you city clubbers, it’s one of the reasons krusty’s like psy-trance in the bush.
A that stage we decided it was a little warm and so kicked back under the bridge in the shade, listening to Joop on the main stage where the crowd had slowly begun to swell. He was playing some great melodic trance with a few classics. Taking it all in, the setup was pretty basic but very effective. A good size crowd had turned up – enough to have a solid boogie at each dancefloor and create a vibe, but you could still get to the toilets and back in 5 minutes. Vigilant but extremely friendly security, who more often than not smiled and joked with the crowd, were even having a boogie up front.
As the sun moved past its peak, we hit the floor to Joop. To my disappointment it went techy so we departed in favour of the fatter sounds of Plastic Funk who had come on the Academy stage. Phat. Solid. Sexy. It was great afternoon music, and there was a very, very good looking crowd having a wonderful time.
The view from the top dancefloors were breathtaking. Smiling faces and a view of the city all the way to the MCG and over the river as you gaze towards the gardens. Daytime dance parties are a great thing. It’s within normal waking hours, it’s way more relaxed, and I don’t think it’s anywhere near as trashy as your regular ‘all-nighter’. People here were really enjoying the predominantly trance oriented tunes on a brilliant day. Public transport is accessible at this time of day, so there’s very little risk of folks driving when they shouldn’t be. It’s a great thing for the scene.
After viewing a little of Jean Claude Ades, we went down and caught some Martin Roth on the main floor. The dancing girls were out doing their sexy thing and the crowd loved it. Very well behaved. Again, though, I felt Martin was a little tech trance, and the daylight says you want more groove, so after a brief sit down to farewell some friends, I went back up and danced at the house stage. The fading light was showing more of the visuals the promoters had alluded to.
The city lights came on and about 7pm, and the lasers quickly swung into life on the main floor. It was awesome to say the least. Lange was on and getting a little more melodic, with the crowd really soaking it up. There were a few great moments as people relished in the cooler breeze blowing off the water. I just loved dancing there – Birrarung Marr is easily Melbourne’s best venue – when numbers are managed – for a dance party. The sound system was clearer than earlier in the day, with no reverb echoing through. The lights, the “city-at-night” backdrop, the big crowd (but with room to move) and lasers slicing across the sky… this is clubbing at its best!
I’m not much good with crowds, but my guess would be that there was about 5,000 punters throughout the day. For a first time event, the organisers delivered a great party and were blessed with perfect weather. I think the promoters would be happy with the end result, I know I was. All up, it was a great afternoon and evening out. Don’t be surprised if Defcon becomes a definitive CBD trance party. I had a ball, and I’m sure the Melbourne trance faithful did too.