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Closing Party Review: Cocoon, 1st October 2012

We emerged from Cocoon as fragile and joyous as butterflies, but slightly less attractive.

It was with some trepidation that I rounded the corner of the Amnesia car park and faced the tunnelled entrance to my home for the next 8 hours. Having crossed a good chunk of closing parties off the intimidating list I confess to feeling fragile, exhausted and even a little twitchy at this point. But there was never any real hesitation – acceptable excuses for a techno lover missing Cocoon Closing Party include paralysis, death or alien invasion – and that's it.

The first hour was a bit of a trial, however. Cassy was in full swing and taking no prisoners; I find her sound an acquired taste which can absolutely hit the spot sometimes, but I just wasn't quite ready to be thrown into such relentless and unforgivingly loud bass and found myself cringing slightly and backing away towards the bar. Paul Ritch took the reigns at 3am playing just as heavily, but slightly more ‘user-friendly,' with a bit of bounce and more rhythmic diversity. Live sets are always less predictable and I finally found myself slowly shifting into rave gear during his hour on the tables.

Then the King of Cocoon, Sven Vath, took up his place on the Amnesia main room dais (does anyone seem more at home there than he?) and I knew my night was in capable hands. He began with hi hats and then teased us with an intermittent bass, pulsing like slow motion morse code. Then the bass kicked in full throttle and we were away. It was very upbeat from the outset and my fatigued limbs started jerking of their own accord (dancing, they call it), encouraged into action by the characteristic quick double beat Sven often throws in every four counts during his sets. “Clap your hands; stomp your feet,” some vocals instructed, and willingly, we obeyed. An hour in, Sven started to hammer it down, throwing out manic numbers like Transpiration by I:CUBE and Black Noise by Adam Port. On and on the music pounded and I was reminded that Cocoon is for the committed clubbers, not the casual.

As always though, Sven knows how to pepper the underground drive with upbeat party classics, and the gone-but-by-no-means-forgotten-in-Ibiza Donna Summers classic I Feel Love came out to play some time before 6am. With that delicious disco under our belt we dipped our noses into the Terrace to see how Ricardo Villalobos was faring this week. He seemed to have things under control, playing faster and more upbeat than I expected of him, a highlight being listening to the old school classic Good Life, by Inner City, whilst watching from the balcony a mass of humans squirming and twitching like so many bugs in a bowl. Good fun people watching, but I just couldn't stand to be away from Sven Vath for too long (what if I missed the loo roll bit?!?) so I popped back into the main room.

I missed the loo roll bit. But had no time to be disheartened, as the moment of our return coincided with the start of one of the silliest and most excellent tracks of the summer – Inspector Norse by Todd Terje. Practically skipping onto the dance floor and joining the space-cadet clubbers with the aforementioned loo roll adorning their heads, limbs and trunks, we danced away with exaggerated cheesy moves that our grandparents would have approved of and enjoyed one of my favourite moments of the whole evening. At 8am, after shoulder shrugging to Michel Cleis' Mir a Nero we decided to leave Sven on this high point, and made the permanent migration to the terrace.

This is no easy migration, mind. It requires determination, positivity and most importantly sunglasses to leave the dark and anonymous cocoon of the main room and become accustomed to the completely bright terrace, and the hundreds of faces and bodies now clearly visible in varying states of disarray, without really knowing how far down the scale of disaster your own face has slid. If you can get over yourself, however, Amnesia Terrace during the day is a magical place. Loco Dice's trademark throbbing bass was a raging success, as ever, the techno master absolutely gunning for it to match the energy of the huge crowd. That energy level simply didn't drop for hours, and we had an excellent time alternating between dancing like maniacs, and scanning the crowd for the most amusing looking revellers who had done a little bit more revelling than the rest of us, bless ‘em. Around the 10.30am mark Dice spun the vocals of Artful Dodger's Re-rewind featuring Craig David into the mix and everybody did some terrible robot moves and had a laugh. Deciding to leave on another high note, we made the call to head home at this point, dragging our feet out into the glaring daylight, which inconsiderately burned into our feeble retinas with the fire of a thousand suns.

Later that day and evening, the infamous Cocoon after party was everything you'd expect, with Sven on top form playing to a massive crowd with thousands of people spilling out onto the beach outside La Sal Rossa, where huge extra speakers had been set up in preparation of the overflow of party-goers. Some classic tracks include Knights of the Jaguar - DJ Roland, Mir a Nero - Michel Cleis (again!) and Pepe Bradock's Ma Souris est Folle as a closer.

Cocoon cements its position for another year as one of the original and best techno nights in the world.

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