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Tim | 5 parties that bossed it in summer 2022

The boss picks his dancefloor highlights.

After our clubbing reporter (25), social media manager and nightlife editor (both mid-late 30s...ish!) each submitted their top party picks, we know what you're thinking: I'd really like to read what a 50-something divorcee thinks.

Aha! Well step forward one of Ibiza Spotlight's owners, Tim.

We're only joking of course. Ibiza's dancefloors are renowned for being the most diverse on the planet, welcoming everyone regardless of ethnicity, sexuality, religion or, erm, age.

Tim is a young soul at heart and spends his time walking his dogs, practising yoga, haranguing estate agents and getting invited to review high-end restaurants. He's also been known to attend the odd party.

After several requests were declined, we'd conceded that he was unlikely to submit his list. Alas, in the end the opportunity to have his say proved too strong to resist.

Here's the picks for those of us who have managed to balance growing old both gracefully and disgracefully at the same time. Thanks Tim.

Defected Festival | Dalt Vila

Defected Festival | Dalt Vila | Saturday 30 April

Like you would expect from Defected, the Dalt Vila party boasted a line-up of House heroes and veterans, including Simon Dunmore, fresh from being added to the industry Hall of Fame with a well-deserved IMS Legends Award.

After Danny Tenaglia warmed up the early crowd, Honey Dijon going back-to-back with Louie Vega was a clear highlight.

Both DJs vibed off each other perfectly from opposite ends of the huge stage, with barely a glance between them. Almost telepathic. Afterwards Honey went it alone and took it to even higher levels.

Throughout the day, there was an incredible optimism in the crowd. Far fewer phones than usual, everyone dancing with arms in the air and living in the moment. Amazing open-air scenes and a liberating feeling of freedom and unity – a much needed tonic from the 24 months previous.

Bedouin A Wednesday Saga | Pacha Ibiza

Henrick Schwarz (live) | Bedouin A Wednesday Saga | Pacha | 10 August

From the very first moment, live performer Henrik Schwarz took the crowd in the palm of his hand and held them there for the full two hours of his set. With great new versions of some of his older tracks and veering from his trademark piano-infused melodies to stripped-down minimal kicks and snares, everything just clicked into place.

The crowd, the sound system, the lighting and of course Schwarz's epic tunes all aligned. Even the air-con was gratefully received.

A tough act to follow, Bedouin came on and grappled manfully to maintain the momentum which was no easy task. Full credit to Rami and Tamer for their efforts on this night and across the season.

Damian Lazarus | Hï Ibiza

Damian Lazarus | the Club Room | Hï Ibiza | Saturday 10 September

Despite The Theatre offering up Henrik Schwarz (see above) and Jimi Jules alongside Black Coffee, is was next door that took the plaudits on this night.

The Club Room's excellent acoustics and lighting make for a superb clubbing experience. When the choice of music connects directly to your vein, it’s a really unbeatable space.

Following on from an excellent set by Michael Mayer, Damian Lazarus surprised me by playing a much more varied selection than I anticipated. Plenty of deep, ethno-grooves but with some excellent picks from the mainstream and a few tough, Techno bangers thrown in too.

Overall, a really decent journey through the genres - varying from tweaky Tech joy of Doppelwhipper by Gabriel Ananda, to the Moodymann mix of Norma Jean Bell's I'm The Baddest Bitch In The Place.

Plenty of room on the dancefloor to stretch out and express ourselves, whilst we enjoyed the powerful bass from in front of the booth.

Hyenah | We're Here by Pablo Fierro | Club Chinois

Pablo Fierro, Monkey Safari & Hyenah | We're Here | Club Chinois | Friday 26 August

My record collection is stuffed with tracks by Monkey Safari and Hyenah. The opportunity to see two of my biggest modern influences behind the decks on the same night was too good to miss - and they didn't disappoint.

Monkey Safari consistently produce a flow of great tracks, manoeuvring from mainstream House tracks that you could drop at almost any party, to peak-time Afro House bangers, to afterparty mesmerisers.

We're Here by Pablo Fierro | Club Chinois

Their set culminated with the massive Reborn by Arodes & Moojo, which has been burning up dancefloors all summer.

Pablo Fierro's set was also really good, playing to his strengths with his usual mix of Latin and North African sounds, driven along by the powerful live percussion of Martin Viana.

But it was a personal hero Hyenah, with his only Ibiza visit of the summer, who absolutely smashed it out of the park.

Infectious energy behind the decks. This was an unmissable opportunity to see him in this excellent, intimate venue with such an awesome sound system and visuals. We Belong by Shredder & ADJUMA was the musical highlight.

One More DANTS | Ushuaïa

Black Coffee & The Martinez Brothers | One More DANTS | Ushuaïa | Saturday 8 October

Frankly, an excellent way to round off what has been a triumphant year for both Ushuaïa and Hï Ibiza. Two of DJ Mag's world's number one club's biggest headline acts made the short trip across the road to Ushuaïa to wrap up another season of ANTS in spectacular fashion.

With performances low on pyrotechnics, but large on substance both acts stuck true to their musical roots when they transitioned to the big stage.

While I've been a sceptic, The Martinez Brothers showed why they've been flavour of the month amongst the younger generation.

To close, Black Coffee played a flawless set of Afro House monsters. This included an epic version of The Warrior's Prayer, before stepping firmly into the middle of the road with favourites such a remix of Seal's Crazy.

His set reached the climax with an incredible medley of Ibiza classics, chopped together with Stardust's Music Sounds Better With You. Immediately afterwards, he rounded Ushuaïa's season off with a pimple-inducing sing-a-long to Gloria Gaynor's I Will Survive.

Sounds crap on paper, but in the moment it was sheer, unbridled bliss.

Worthy of honourable mentions go to ARKADYAN playing live at BOHO, Beachouse and improv-rap extraordinaire MC Hammersmith at Lust 4 Laughs, Pikes. The latter not being a party at all, but still delivering big on the dopamine front.

James, your turn next...

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