It wouldn't be Music Week without our annual trip to the Dirtybird BBQ, this year held in Cafeina Wynwood Lounge, an exotic garden venue on the backstreets of Miami's hip art district downtown.
With Grillson on the coals, Barclay the boss on the decks and Eats Everything making lewd gestures behind him in the booth, we'd be hard pushed to find a party as wholesome and hearty as this on the planet, let alone Miami. The tunes are pretty beefy too.
The place is in high spirits shortly after sundown and the cheerful congregation — a crammed motley crew of biceps, bikinis and hipster tattoos — is really popping off, as Barclay (Claude VonStroke) drops Doorly and Shadow Child's new Avec project while Eats, Catz N Dogz, Kill Frenzy and Justin Martin lark about like naughty children behind him.
Behind the smiles, however, something is afoot. According to Justin and Just Blaze, a thief is on the loose...
Later on after some supreme sushi at Moshi Moshi, we jump in a taxi to Ice Palace West where Jamie Jones' Paradise party is on the verge of getting closed down by a pesky Fire Marshall as the place, already rammed to capacity, is mobbed with ticketholders stuck outside trying to get in.
Even DJ Mag is left outside for almost two hours along with 50 or so other members of the guestlist. However once we finally do find an in, we see what all the fuss is about. A massive complex of jet-black marble rooms with high ceilings and sleek, lavishly laid out decking, Ice Palace West is a towering maze of iniquity.
We find Rob James building a crowd the booming back room, Lee Foss booting off in the middle room, while Fire Marshall orders prevent any more people getting to the wild, extravagantly decorated garden space — full of forestry, streams and bridges — that’s more like an adventure playground for clubbers than a dance terrace, causing chaotic queues in between rooms.
Eats Everything dominates the laser-strewn middle room with tunes like Shonky’s remix of El Provost and ‘Gypsy Woman’, while Kim Ann Foxman and Midland are given the tough task of keeping a small crowd from wandering off to explore this lofty arrangement of halls, corridors and courtyards.
Outside, Jamie Jones and Dyed Soundorom cross languid boogie house styles with tech-y touches in magical twilight as the sun begins to rise, while the Fire Marshall finally chips off but not before having one last word; threatening to have one DJ (naming no names) thrown in jail for “delaying” the switch off.
The marshall's absence does allow hordes of people to now run free in the garden, which is no consolation to those who were left high, dry and hoping for a refund.
A mixed bag of extremes, day two proves just how much this season still has to offer.
Pics: Khris Cowley