Despite having launched in 2014 and being newcomers to the Manchester dance music scene, Lo-Fi have built a considerable rep and are pulling in the big guns already. Tonight’s double headliner bill of Floating Points and Cosmin TRG certainly showcases that.
For a promoter that identifies as “mostly techno”, Floating Points doesn’t seem the most obvious booking. He’s a DJ well versed in building lengthy sets filled with jazz and funk, not exactly your pounding 130bpm. And whilst soulful funk is still at the forefront of his selection – with the likes of Alicia Myers’s ‘I Want To Thank You’ typifying the upbeat, vocal driven tracks he favours – as the set progresses it feels more muscularly driven and at a greater tempo than I’ve previously experienced from the Manchester born DJ. Possibly a response to the promoter’s identity and shorter than usual set time. The airing of ‘King Bromeliad’, a track from Floating Points’s next Eglo Records release, proves a set highlight. The layering of grooving, lively and soaring textures combine and are amplified through the club system into an intensely danceable number.
Next up is headline act Cosmin TRG: you can file him right alongside previous Lo-Fi guests Boddika and Surgeon as he immediately thumps the room with the spinning of fine techno cuts. As the man responsible for the very first release on Hessle Audio, presently one of the most influential labels around, and now frequently releasing on Modeselektor’s admired 50Weapons imprint – Cosmin TRG is an artist that has been perfecting his craft for some time and is now a master. TRG is markedly more aggressive and dark than Floating Points. The cascading bells of Planetary Assault System’s ‘No Exit’ envelope Sound Control to produce that mind-bending effect on the crowd only techno truly provides as everyone present loses themselves in the sound. As his set progresses the kick drums remain booming, the bass remains distorted and reveller’s fists remain pumping: what more could you want.
Lo-Fi are on a break now for the summer; I wait with excited anticipation to see the no doubt high calibre of artists they bring to Manchester next year.