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Review: DJ Awards and Renaissance Closing Party

As the DJ awards turns 15 Renaissance celebrates its 20th birthday and all under one roof...

It's always nice to see how a club can transform itself into something completely different at each party; ultimately creating a new experience and atmosphere for the clubber. Last night glam Pacha did exactly this and rolled out the red carpet to host the 15th annual DJ Awards - aimed to reward artists who have made a stellar contribution to the dance music scene over the past year. With categories covering anything from 'Best Festival' to 'Best Techno artist' the awards were attended by an array of the island's favourite acts, many of whom were eagerly awaiting to see if they had been crowned the winner of their category... Oh, and eagerly awaiting the after-party which saw Renaissance celebrate their 20th anniversary with help from Solomun and Jonathan Cowan.

Miguel Campbell relaxed on Pacha's fine white leather sofas to the sounds of Andy Baxter (who was joined by Graham Sahara and Simeon Friend in the booth) as Nervo and Seth Troxler mingled over bubbly as Maceo Plex and Solomun could be seen chin wagging right up until hosts Des Paul and Lucy Horobin took centre stage to begin the ceremony. As Domino by Oxia blasted from the speakers excitement, questions and whispers filled the air... "Who will win?" "Who do you want to get the award?" Soon the time had come and after a brief history of the highly anticipated awards ceremony - first hosted in 1998, each category, nominees and then after a dramatic pause... the winners were announced.

For those who missed our live twitter feed last night here are the winners of the DJ Awards 2012: Best Techno artist - Carl Cox, Best Downtempo artist - Nightmares On Wax, Best Dubstep/Bass artist - Chase and Status, Best Trance artist - Armin van Buuren, Best Deep house artist - Maceo Plex, Best Newcomer - Arty, Best Tech house artist - Seth Troxler, Best Electro house - Tiësto, Best International artist - Armin van Buuren, Best Dance Nation - Australia, Best Live Performance - Faithless Soundsystem, Best Festival - Tomorrowland, Best Ibiza DJ - Andy Baxter, Best Producer of the year - Solomun, Best Cutting edge - Soundcloud, Best media - Pacha Magazine, Best party/parties of the year - ENTER. and Cadenza Vagabundos and finally the Track of the year award went to Pirupa for his summer hit 'Party non stop'.

Once the awards had been whizzed through - rushing to party in true Ibiza style, special guests Hercules & Love affair mounted the stage like an army of divas and sang their way through a selection of original and familiar songs over firey house beats. Repetitively belting out "free your body" over Todd Terry's track 'Back to the beat' the all singing, all dancing (and clapping and waving and hugely excitable) band warmed up the room amid a red mist. The live performance made a nice change to last year's DJ only line-up and brought to life the glitz, glam and buzz of an awards show. Finishing on a very soulful note the band left Solomun a dance-floor of feasting music worshippers ready for their next serving.

As expected the crowd's heads were soon tilted in admiration at the DJ Booth where 'Producer of the year' Solomun cooly unleashed his harmonious, melodic groove onto the room. The dance floor soon filled up and Renaissance's 20th birthday party was in full swing, pumping a slow bass which protruded the body as melodies waved over sharp synths; the crowd adored what Solomun had to offer and his clever and precise mixing of genres had the club embraced. He dropped in some hip hop, R'n'B and old school remixes with tracks like Sharem Jey's 'Like Nobody does' (due for release on 8th October) which plays with Montell Jordan's classic hit 'This is how we do it', and somehow the creative music man even managed to seemlessly blend in Busta Rhymes and Mariah Carey track 'I know what you want.'

Keeping a current groove 'Benediction' by Hot Natured feat. Ali Love also filled the air and from the party's endless bounce alone I know who I would have DJing at my birthday (in my fantasy world of course) and yes Solomun it is you! Experiencing a party which went from a red carpet event to live gig to a deep house meets nu-disco meets old school party was great fun and it will be interesting to see how the DJ Awards 2013 will top it! Even a missed flight resulting in a Huxley no show didn't stop this party's groove... Bravo! (And congrats to all the award winners!)

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