Published Sep 14, 2009As Ottawa's frosh week saw droves of students, still loan-rich and optimistic, fill Ottawa's newest nightclub, Rio de Janeiro remixers-cum-electro artists the Twelves pumped out a DJ set on two laptops and a microphone.
Acting as the evening's official VJ/DJs, Ottawa multimedia duo the Latest Artists helped greet fans upon Ritual's 10:15 p.m. door opening. Blending a motorized mix of techno/house with a smattering of new-school hip hop, the Latest Artists' Andrew O'Malley kept the bpms high amid a hypnotic display of po-mo video visuals festooning the backdrop of the stage, courtesy of wife and business partner Deborah.
Taking the stage next was Ottawa duo StrayOtic, whose sunglasses-adorned, buttoned-up approach to Midnight Star-era synth-funk helped usher the crowd to the front of the dance floor. Operating an array of instruments including synthesizers, sequencers, drum machines, harmonicas, pan flutes and a didgeridoo (why not?), StrayOtic kept the crowd bouncing despite a few heckling chants of "Chromeo-matic."
Hot on the heels of their debut single and some brilliant online-only mixes, Brazil's Twelves slap-chopped their way through a set of club bangers and dense mashers. Falling somewhere in between Girl Talk's Top 40 wave pool and Optimos's obscuro splish-splah, the Twelves lengthy and potent set seemed more concerned about the texture of the beats than the notoriety of the songs themselves.
Focusing on contemporary club hits from Phoenix, Black Kids and Little Boots, the duo pulled out an array of vocal hiccups, fractured beats and serialized rhymes to create a set that played like night-long musical climax. As their peers rely on the low end to keep asses shaking, the Twelves treble-charged performance showed just how three dimensional the art of DJing has become.