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Review: Insane, 30th August

You’d be mad not to check it out...

Last night Pacha gave us another dose of insanity with John Digweed's Friday residency, Insane, welcoming back Derrick Carter, DJ Sneak, Mark Farina and Joris Voorn.

Insane is really one of the figureheads of the proclaimed ‘Year of Change'. Standing tall as a success story for the new trend of genre-mixing and venue-switching, Digweed has brought a night to Pacha which challenges the musical constraints even more as the brand celebrates its fortieth birthday this year.

The line-up was a who's who of quality house and techno, with Joris Voorn then a special ‘back to back to back' set from legendary trio Derrick Carter, DJ Sneak and Mark Farina. The last time the three of them played together was in July, and after hearing great things I was keen to catch them all in action.

The three of them played some stomping tunes. I was hoping for a little more chemistry between them, as individually each DJ has so much charisma and such a specific sound, and I fear they may have been almost too polite with each other, keen not to take the limelight from the others, but then losing a bit of their identities as they thoughtfully selected each song to flow exactly to the next. That being said, their overall sound was brilliant. I wasn't too sure if Carter could pull off such a massive Chicago sound coupled with the Pacha brand, however even in the clouds of confetti (which Sneak kept frantically waving away from the decks and out of the way as Carter and Farina played) he confidently smashed out classic house and techno.

Joris Voorn was my highlight of the night, bringing the atmosphere to a whole new level. The Dutch DJ, who is one of my personal favourites, commanded Pacha's floor from high up in the DJ booth with his usual likeable modesty, letting his tracks do the talking. Voorn provided the soundtrack to a wonderfully weird spectacle of jewelled and corseted dancers, harlequin prints and more guyliner than I've seen since Gary Numan on TOTP2. To my delight Voorn played NY's Finest Do You Feel Me, a track that seems to have been reincarnated this season by the likes of him and Deetron. With this, lots of soulful sax and a killer remix of Soul II Soul's Back To Life, it was the ultimate feel-good set, creating a great after-party vibe amongst the crowd. Still, it was significantly heavier than other sets I've heard him play this summer, for example on the Space Terrace.

I fell out the door in the early hours, with a pair of wacky moustached glasses on my head as a nice keepsake from one of the staff and bits of confetti still in my hair the next morning. With unmissable names, a huge variety of sounds and genres and the permission to dance as madly as you like, it's clear that attending Insane is - well, actually not that insane at all.

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