Published Jul 02, 2014The dreadlocked cyber-goths, mohawked punk crazies and deceptively casual freaks came out of the woodwork to see Venetian Snares on Canada Day, a show that the breakcore king from Winnipeg was lucky to make after he was forced to cancel ten U.S. dates. It was a balmy 30 degrees in Vancouver during the day, but it was even hotter at 11:30 p.m., when the infamous producer took the stage.
Taking big swigs from bottles of Beck's and using a lighter to illuminate his book of burned disks, Aaron Funk bent space and time to his will as he assaulted two Denon 3700 decks and a Pioneer DJM 900 Nexus mixer with the surgical precision and diabolical madness of Jack the Ripper. This was not your average DJ set. The things he did seemed to be humanly impossible. How anyone could be so comfortable with 180 BPM tracks in 7/4 time that they can not only tweak and mix, but throw down harder tricks like beat juggling without the whole thing devolving into a complete train-wreck? One can only assume dark magicks were at play.
Style-wise, Funk was all over the map, drawing from across his astoundingly dense and sonically varied catalogue. He dropped some Rossz Csillag Alatt Született strings here, some Detrimentalist jungle deconstruction there, and who knows what else in between. Everything was tweaked, edited, filtered, bit crushed and stuttered, always evolving but never to excess. Funk even got on the mic for the hook for "Amazon" and the hard dick musings from the title track of My Love Is a Bulldozer, his newest full-length and first in four years (which was a long time for someone who had been releasing several albums every year before that).
There was a hiccup about an hour into his set as one of the decks stopped working, leading Funk to joke that the rest of the set would be karaoke. Fortunately, the glitch miraculously sorted itself out a track later, allowing him to vigorously play out the rest of the night until curfew forced him to stop.
The crowd ate it all up like cannibals coming off a two-week cleanse. This city loves any excuse to mosh, and that's about all you can do with music this fast and intense. Funk's inimitable style, obliterating drum breaks in myriad patterns of intricate devastation that are so suited for the name Venetian Snares, coaxed waves of passionate pogoing, head banging and shoving. There's no other dance floor blitzkrieg in electronic music quite like the one Venetian Snares creates.