Club Club feat. Meat Katie @ Chinese Laundry, Sydney (16/08/08)

Image for Club Club feat. Meat Katie @ Chinese Laundry, Sydney (16/08/08)

Every now and then, one is reminded of the depth of local talent that exists in Sydney. Whether it be thanks to some small party held in a dingy hole with a line-up consisting of a bunch of DJs you’ve never even heard of, or a sterling set by one of Sydney’s more-recognised acts. The latter is exactly what happened last Saturday at Chinese Laundry. Officially, the night was all about tech-funker Meat Katie, but musically, local DJ Matttt completely stole the show.

Given the arduous task of a three-hour set in the Cave, Matttt jumped in head-first and highlighted exactly why he’s deserving of his residency at the venue, and all those sweet support slots he gets (which make me just a little bit jealous of him…okay, a lot jealous of him). Both technically and musically, Matttt’s set was the highlight of the night by far, and a shining testament to the high calibre of talent in Sydney.

Kicking things off deep, warm and subtle, Matttt coaxed the crowd into the Cave and onto the dancefloor with a series of straight grooves and heart-warming basslines, courtesy of tunes such as the excellent Mortiz Van Oswald re-work of Sebbo’s Watamu Beach, Two Armadillos’ remix of Belvedere by Kiki & Sass and a new DJ Koze cut. Over the next hour he slowly took the music into techier territory, but still retained the groove and subtlety that had earlier captured the crowd’s imagination. Joel Mull’s Face Up was a definite highlight of this part of the set, not only because it totally kicks arse and ignited the dancefloor, but also because it signalled Matttt was preparing to shift into a higher gear musically.

Carefully and patiently working its way up to tougher tech house and deep techno, Matttt’s set progressed in a manner that would even make Digweed proud. Tracks such as the Joris Voorn remix of Movin by Skylark and Cirez D’s Stockholm Marathon kept the crowd moving and prepared them for an onslaught of filth, including the now massive Dubfire remix of Radio Slave’s Grindhouse and the acid-drenched Her Eyes Are Stars by Stryke, which wins the award for best 303 lead of 2008. A brilliant set from a rising star who really deserves the credit he’s getting lately.

Meanwhile, Jeff Drake had warmed up the Laundry tastefully and respectfully for Meat Katie. Treading a three-way tight-rope of tech house, breaks and non-cheesy electro house, Drake kept it up-front, funky, and dancefloor friendly for the burgeoning crowd, but also paced his set beautifully and was careful not to step on Meat Katie’s toes. Highlights included a few classic house tracks (whose names escape me), as well as the undeniably awesome Pimp Jackson Is Talking Now!! by Loco Dice.

Meat Katie (or Mark Pember, as his mum calls him) was up next. Fanboys gushed, fangirls got moist, and randoms who had no idea who he was just kept on shuffling their arses off. Although unfortunately the set wasn’t exactly to this reviewer’s personal taste, it definitely worked for the rest of the room, who lapped up every single tune like it was the last time they were going to hear a kick drum. Focusing his set predominantly around heavy, bassline-driven electro and fidget house, Meat Katie engaged in a game of bassline-one-upmanship with himself, dropping gut-wrenching bassline after gut-wrenching bassline. A couple of diversions into techno and slamming progressive (including a well-timed drop of his new track Cracks ) were a welcome break from the electro and fidget onslaught, and were personal highlights of the set for this reviewer.

Dopamine continued on a similar vein to Pember, giving the crowd a taste of his re-ignited love of the four-to-the-floor beat. Crunchy electro house, bassline-driven tech house and a splash of new school techno flavours were the order of the day, with Matt demonstrating that he’s just as deft at pulverising a dancefloor with straight beats as he is syncopated ones.

All-in-all, a quality night at Laundry, and a perfect example of the fact that Sydney has talent of equal (perhaps even greater) calibre to the rest of the world.

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