Published Sep 12, 2011Found beside the Zion Lounge in Toronto's east end is 191 Parliament Street, the ideal venue for the serious electronic music enthusiast. A huge rooftop patio, loft-style main floor and high-quality sound system hide behind an unmarked steel door guarded by a friendly bouncer. The club's existence is made aware to concertgoers through advanced notice or by simply being savvy enough to identify the club's entrance. Far enough from Toronto's club district, the venue is host to a noticeable reduction in aggressive drunks and energy-drink promoters that can often spoil a good night of music.
This Saturday night show saw the likes of Pheek, Billy Dalessandro and Berk Offset (pictured) working a table of electronics to an extremely receptive and open-minded crowd. After some support from local DJs Alicia Hush, Ana+one, Talal & Zoi and Zaid Edghaim, Pheek took the first lengthy performance slot. The minimal sounds of the Montreal-based producer worked themselves nicely into a body of completely new material, with Pheek only performing one track from his most recent album, Channeling.
After the Archipel owner finished up his abstract, thought-provoking set, Chicago's Billy Dalessandro subjected the crowd to his own unique take on house music, firing off his brand of sci-fi space funk, tinged with Chicago-house influences and tasteful atmospherics.
The glitchy sounds of Germany's Berk Offset (moniker of 9Volt-Musik founder Rainer Maria Silke) and peak-night timing saw the greatest number of bodies letting loose and making their way to the dance floor. Berk Offset's overloaded, mind-fucking take on techno is perfectly suited to the live setting. Sounding more like an improvisational jazz musician who was asked to perform on a dozen half-broken CPU-overloaded computers than a "dance music" DJ, Berk Offset's experimentalism and performance are sure to enlighten the musical philosopher within those who are passionate about forward-thinking music.