Time Warp Festival returned to NYC after a five-year hiatus with an all-star lineup of the best Techno DJs, producers and performers, making it the stand out event of the fall season. Partnering with the phenomenal group Teksupport, Time Warp attendees were given access to two stages in a warehouse setting with top-class lighting and sound systems elevating the experience for all. This event blew me away as I danced to underground Techno and House music all night long.
The second day at Time Warp, I started out listening to a set by Denis Sulta. Doing what he does so well, Sulta’s sultry set included house bangers, fan favorites (“I Remember” by Finn Bjarnson, Ryan Raddon, Joel Zimmerman) and some of his own recordings, providing pumping beats and rhythms which were enhanced by his special touch on synths and chords. At only 26, Sulta has solidified himself as a premier DJ and music producer. Sulta shined as he created a level of heightened excitement in the crowd with his striking vocal tracks grabbing the attention of many. Being able to see this young artist play so many classics felt like taking a walk down memory lane as song after song celebrated the house catalog.
Sven Vath, a pioneer of the Electronic Dance Music scene, took the stage with his vinyl records and turntable. Surprising the crowd at every turn, this legend provided beat after beat of dance tunes that were tailor-made for lovers of Techno. Having set the tone for the modern dance experience, Vath continued to dominate the night with his commanding performance, moving all who attended. It’s no wonder that this inspirational artist launched the careers of so many. His long-lasting impact was felt through those that came after him as well as those of us who were there enjoying his show that night.
Well into the second half of the night, Peggy Gou took the stage in the standout set of the night. Taking everything that is exciting, avant-garde and current in the modern dance scene, Gou provided a new twist on traditional House and Techno themes playing dark, pounding and intellectual sets with mature concepts. Outfitting attendees with the freshest sounds and mixes, her set never stopped pushing the boundaries of the club experience. I felt like a badass listening to this set ready to take on the world.
The show organizers decided to close out the event on floor two with Nina Kraviz. One of the most dynamic performance artists out there, Kraviz played her selections with her provocative style, reflecting her unique philosophy. Futuristic, fun and a risk-taker, I marveled at Kraviz’s effect on the crowd. A chameleon on the stage with an ever-changing mood and presence, Kraviz provided a feel-good ending to a two-day event packed with twists and turns in this musical journey called Time Warp.
By the end of the night I realized what this event had meant me. I grappled with the question: What is a techno event supposed to be? I was remembering when I used to go out every weekend hoping to listen to cutting edge Techno and House in New York. I would be searching for a club or event that had what I was looking for in the genre which was variety, creativity, and depth of meaning. Time Warp had all of this and so much more because the artists who were brought in for this event have a rich history in the creation, development, and preservation of the genre. I laughed, I cried and I danced. In the end, I sat in the lounge, made new friends and marveled over how fantastic this event made me feel. I can’t boast enough about how exceptional Time Warp was, and I can’t wait for the next one.
*Featured image via Off Brand Project.