N-Type @ Rhino Room, Adelaide (03/01/09)
Tue 6th Jan, 2009 Event Reviewsin
The Rhino Room was the homely venue to showcase a growing genre, and rising culture, and an increasing movement in Adelaide known as Dubstep. With appreciators knocking on the doors at 9pm desperate to soak up the bass, DJ’s Strife and Audio Opticon started cranking the tunes, opting for a lighter Rastafarian vocal style set. Desh sported a noticeably tech-ier set, with faster moving mid and high range riffs and leads.
Late to start but not too late to impress were the visuals by the Digital Prophets. With spiralling patterns, anime faces, and overhead visions of faraway places, those seated were too easily entertained, and those dancing were taken to another world!
The first major crowd pleaser was Counterpart, and is the set that brought the people out of their chairs and onto the dance floor! Playing a hard but smooth set featuring some very star-wars-like laser sounds and Marley inspired riffs , the real crowd pleasers were tracks featuring vocals such as Benga ’s Pleasure and Skream and Plastician Some Way Through This. After such a pumping set, many had to go outside for some much needed air (be it clean or nicotine laced). Upon return Macro as always had made a happy crowd, with some tantalising tetris styles lead lines and sounds.
Jayar started darkening the vibe further, which carried well with Grif being the MC. Although Grif seemed a little less energetic than usual, just having that human touch to such a mechanical vibe was such a great way to fill up the room.
However great these boys were nothing compared to the UK’s N-Type – what an absolute champion! Easy on the eye and the ear (as many a lady commented) N-Type showed Adelaide the potential and wonder of Dubstep. Acting as his own MC, N-Type’s crowd interaction was phenomenal. Crazy dancers and swayers were throwing themselves around to irregular and less formulated rhythms, whilst putting their hands up in the air; N-Type gained applause and wound back the record to drop the next thumping track.
It was great to have such a lovely approachable character and musical impressionist in Adelaide playing his own tunes and tracks featuring Paranoid Shirley Manson samples, his style was downright hard, and even more rhythmically broken in comparison to what the other DJ’s displayed that night. Given the opportunity to speak to N-Type, I had to ask the question – are the Dubstep appreciators in Europe just as confused about how to dance like the ones in Australia? And his answer was ‘Yes! – their jaws are swinging more in time with the beat than their bodies!’
Although the music makes for some co-ordination confusion, the beauty of Dubstep where it is right now is its freedom from set formula, unlike electro or Drum and Bass which is very much set in its ways. Of course, it seems popular and almost expected to hear a fast gated bass-line to keep the track moving, already dubstep is being sub-branched and categorised. However in its debut it makes for an evening of unexpected pleasure and audio surprises. It will be interesting to see the evolution and expansion of such a new and unpredictable sound!