After a decade of throwing legendary, hush-hush parties around New York City, a company called Verboten decided it was time to open their own physical venue. It had to be hip, loud, and welcoming; but most of all, it had to be about the music. Before anything else, this had to be a place created for the true appreciation of art.
At Verboten, an artist performs to appease him/herself, is given the leeway to be experimental, and can explore the true elements of dance music -- the target audience is one who has a greater understanding of music artistry than the average concert go-er, they can identify craft and skill over relentless drops and bangers. And since day one, Verboten's philosophy has stayed true: with good music, comes good people and good times.
It's hard to believe that the Verboten venue has only been open for a mere year. In March 2014, in the prime, hustling location of Williamsburg, the sound-obsessed team opened the doors of Wythe Ave's newest locale -- and now they would like to thank the fans, renew their dues, and celebrate their one year anniversary with a MONSTER of a party. Dubbed VERBOTEN 001, we would expect nothing less than a behemoth of a lineup to commemorate Brooklyn's favorite nightclub -- the three night long extravaganza features headliners of epic proportions: Damian Lazarus, Carl Craig, and Maya Jane Coles. So let's break it down, night by night, because you cannot afford to miss any of it.
THURSDAY 3.12: DAMIAN LAZARUS & THE ANCIENT MOONS [Live], PILLOWTALK [Live], AND BEDOUIN
Kicking off the weekend's massive celebration will be a night of boogie heavy, funky, deep beats. Headlining is dance-music veteran DAMIAN LAZARUS; the Verboten fan favorite will be debuting his latest project: a live band collaboration with The Ancient Moons, which he has been working on since earlier this year; Lazarus describes their musical concoction as "incredibly talented and electric". Alongside never before seen art by the visionary David Terranova, the London born producer plans to put on a spectacle that is invigorating to all the senses. The small tidbits released suggest a sound that blends both tribal and robotic components; but with Damian who knows what we can expect for such an immense performance.
Opening will be the shimmering trio Sammy D, Ryan Williams, and Michael Tello - better known as PILLOWTALK. Pillowtalk's sound plays with aspects of R&B, boogie, techno and house - their latest, the Come Back EP (released on Life & Death) explores both disco and modern doo-wop styles. A live performance by the funky collection will undoubtedly have the crowd grooving and clapping along into the early hours of the morning.
Last, but certainly not least, BEDOUIN will be providing a healthy portion of euphoric, electronic energy. The Brooklyn based duo, Tamer Malki and Rami Deejay bring to the table a unique, mysterious style reminiscent of traveling through a dark, hallucinogenic rain forest. Back in 2013, Bedouin made their Burning Man debut; since then they have been gaining extensive leverage in the dance music world.
FRIDAY 3.13: CARL CRAIG, LUCIANO, CHUCK FLASK, AND KEITH KEMP
PUT YOUR HANDS UP FOR DETROIT! That's right, the dance music demigods known as CARL CRAIG and LUCIANO will be gracing the stage; possibly even back to back, as part of their DETROIT LOVE party. Dubbed (unofficially) the biggest night of the VERBOTEN 001 celebrations, performances by the likes of these two will be of astronomical proportions. For reference, rewind to July -- when the two techno legends joined forces and threw an affair for the ages on the Brooklyn Waterfront (with Verboten and StageONE) -- if you attended that show then you know that we will be in for a real treat this coming weekend. If you are unfamiliar... know this: the blend of Carl Craig and Luciano is about as masterful as it comes. There is no level of praise we could give these two that would not be an understatement.
And supporting acts? Verboten is bringing in the best friend pairing of CHUCK FLASK and KEITH KEMP. Heavy hitters in the Detroit house genre, the two have made impact in the music scene -- set to perform at this year's Movement Festival. Get a glimpse of how Saturday night will open by listening to the duo mix live for Somewhere in Detroit -- anyone else get a slight DirtyBird vibe?
SATURDAY 3.14: MAYA JANE COLES, LAUREN FLAX, AND WILD DARK
The final night of Verboten's three night gala ends with none other than the hailing queen of London House and techno, MAYA JANE COLES. Known for being a master of her craft, the electronic powerhouse writes, produces, masters, engineers, and arranges her own tracks; on occasion, she even creates her own artwork and visuals. Her trademark meticulous method of design shines through in her performances, where it is extremely evident she has one of the sharpest ears in the industry. Her music draws primarily from house and garage, but more often than not you'll also catch her mixing sprinklings of R&B, Soul, and Hip Hop.
In the continuing ode to all things Brooklyn, LAUREN FLAX will be spinning Saturday night as well, who is best known for her work in CREEP; a trip-hop duo Flax created with her close friend Lauren Dillard. Originally a Detroit native, Lauren moved to NYC back in the early 2000s and took the underground music scene by the horns. The female producer first caught my attention with her 2014 THUMP Top Knot Mix, which flaunts her rich, pure house style -- there is no question the tattoo-ed brunette beauty will be dealing ample servings of textural dance vibes throughout her set.
Brothers Ryan and Corey Negrin, known as WILD DARK are the final supporting act on the closing night of Verboten 001. Their debut EP, Falling Deep, released in tandem with Bespoke Musik, presents the group's mysterious, spiritual tones with three original tracks. Their performance style seems to go hand-in-hand with their named alias; deep, dark, and unpredictable.
The inaugural event known as Verboten 001 will celebrate the venue's unparalleled taste in music and exceptional atmosphere the only way they know how - with one hell of a party.
Happy one year Verboten, we can't wait to see you have in store for us next.
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