All photos by Daniel Leinweber/Razberry Photography for VerbotenNewYork.com
This past Sunday, August 23, THUMP played host to the latest edition of Verboten's StageONE party, which brought along Jamie xx, Maya Jane Coles, AndHim, Matador, and local favorites Nastia and Bedouin, to an East River lot for an all day marathon.
After debuting with Sasha's Last Day on Earth Party, the third year of Verboten's summer series included one the year's most hyped stars, Jamie xx. Jamie's career as a DJ, and identity in the dance music world, has come full-tilt after the release of his debut album, In Colour. While reviews of the album ranged, there's no denying the release catapulted Jamie to a new tier of fame.
Backlit by a remarkably massive disco ball, with his curly mop flowing in the breeze—Jamie rinsed a relatively obscure set, choosing to include some disco-laced vinyl, and only briefly segwaying into sections of his popular album tracks like "Gosh" and "Seesaw." While many patrons were blissfully locked into his set, others longed for more, whether that be the inclusion of more vocals (that they recognized at least), or something a bit more pumpy.
Regardless, when Popcaan's lyrics for "I Know There's Gonna Be (Good Times)" catapulted out the monitors in tandem with Jamie's classic steel-drum line, most seem satisfied. As Maya Jane Coles cued up her first beat however, anyone's thirst for higher-intensity material was quickly quenched.
It's hard not to love Maya, and her StageONE set further proved why. The Verboten resident cycled through gems from her artist album Comfort and a few IDs my Shazam failed to recognize. She took the packed crowd seamlessly into the sunset, and was all smiles. From Jamie's set to Maya's, the tone of the event followed suit with the setting sun, blending from something a bit bright, to something darker, and more tenacious.
To close at the day was Dubliner live techno artist, Matador, who solidified the changing vibe with some pounding techno. Banging, twisting, and pressing a variety of knobs, keys, and faders, the Irishman played a set that ranged from relentless, to even occasionally funky, proving the wide breadth of his catalogue and prowess as a live artist.
Joining Jamie and Maya, who'd be playing under her dubstep moniker Nocturnal Sunshine, Matador would soon continue showcasing his at the official Verboten afterparty down the street, in their actual club.
Summer parties in our fair city of New York can be a blessing and a curse. On one hand, it's the perfect chance to dance until nearing levels of heatstroke with your closest pals, to what's often some of the best and brightest in dance music. Other times, the hype around marquee events' big name DJs, and their hefty price tags, can lead to what feels like an experience more centered around getting that perfect Snapchat, and what type of stylish sunglasses one will choose to wear. Still, regardless of who's there for what, and how they express it, can you really scoff at the beauty, or perhaps controlled anarchy, of dancing beside the Manhattan skyline for 10+ hours to some of the best DJs in the world? Don't think so.
David Garber is wearing stylish sunglasses on Twitter