The Detroit River from Sinbad's Restaurant & Marina
Summertime in Detroit is nothing short of busy. This past weekend was no exception with Dirty 313ectronic Production's Riverside Groove. Hosted at Sinbad's Restaurant and Marina, which has been around for nearly 60 years, they are bringing some of those classic Detroit sounds back to the riverfront in the heart of the D.
Sinbad's Restaurant & Marina
The Riverside Groove was started just two years ago and, for their third time around, it was one hell of a party.With former headliners ranging from Justin Martin to Rob Garza, this festival was destined for success. Now, back again this summer, the lineup was even more stacked with some of the best House and Techno DJs in the biz.
This year, we kicked off the weekend with Kevin Saunderson, Phife Dawg, Egyptian Lover and Flava D. Sunday was nothing less, with Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs (TEED), Matthew Dear, Wolf + Lamb and Nick Monaco. To say it was non-stop, quality music would honestly be an understatement. The weekend headliners were accompanied by some of the best local artists, as well: Doug English, Erno, Gabi, Jay Biggs, Golf Clap, PRGRM, Chuck Flask, Loren and a handful more.
PRGRM throwing down on the second stage
The festival itself was actually organized on the patio and parking lot behind the restaurant. Right when you walked through the front gates, you were immediately at the first stage, teeming with the local artists. Then, as you turned the corner to the back of the building, you were greeted with vendor booths, a covered bar with ample seating and, of course, the main stage. For a festival literally in a parking lot, the acoustics were fantastic! A+ for both the stage and sound engineers.
Doug English during his and Ross Reggs set on the second stage
The festival, itself, was defined by the overarching and all-encompassing "chill factor." Because it was at a classic Detroit spot. Because it was in a parking lot on the Detroit River. Because it was dedicated to the music whose roots tie back into the city. The Riverside Groove was "pure" and "wholesome," as far as festivals go. The only people there were the ones who are 100% in love with this music, not the ones looking for the next rave.
And it was with that ultimate "chill factor" the weekend began.
This year was filled with "classic" Detroit artists, as well as some easily recognizable names from across the US and the UK. They kept us groovin' on the Detroit River all weekend.
DJ Psychos all-vinyl set
One of the first artists to grace the stage was DJ Psycho, known for his wild, all-vinyl (and true Techno) sets. A member of the Detroit Techno Militia, Psycho has made a name for himself within the world of Techno, spanning generations by fusing some of the original Techno beats with the later adaptations. Here, however, his set was all over the place- ranging from remixes of The Lion King Soundtrack to Chef's Chocolate Salty Balls from South Park- before he hit his Techno groove.
On the other stage, Loren was throwing down an equally-mean, all-vinyl Techno set. A local artists starting to make a name for herself, Loren definitely left an impression in the minds of everyone there. Both her and DJ Psycho set the tone for the remainder of the weekend.
Now, the surprise set of the weekend definitely goes to Flava D. Hailing from the UK, she threw down with funky, groovy tracks, falling somewhere between Tech House and Garage. She had people head bangin' right up front and House dancing all the way in the back.
Chuck Flask on the second stage
Chuck Flask. For everyone who was there, nothing more needs to be said. He played nothing but Quality Tech House and Techno, closing out the second stage on Day 1. It was solid, consistent and pulled a huge crowd, drawing many people away froM Phife DOg on the main stage. In a word (or two), dirty-funky, in the best way possible. His was the set you specifically come into Detroit to hear.
[video width="1280" height="720" mp4="http://www.magneticmag.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/Kevin-Saunderson.mp4"][/video]
Both Egyptian Lover and Phife Dog prepped the crowd for one of the Forefathers of Techno, Kevin Saunderson. And oh by, did he deliver. Deliver dark and gritty Techno, with a bass line that never quit. It was a performance and a history lesson rolled up into one, bringing both the best and most forgotten bits of Techno together on the stage. In the spirit of honesty, however, one of the best aspects of his set was seeing his sons, Dantiez and Damarii, up on stage with him.
Unlike the first day, Day 2 started on the second stage with the local artists holding it down. From PRGRM to Doug English to Golf Clap, it was a solid couple of hours of non-stop dancing. And it didn't hurt that Golf Clap was passing out popsicles during their set! So that is where you could find the majority of the crowd for much of the afternoon.
That is, until Nick Monaco stepped up to the decks on the main stage. It was the perfect soundtrack for the early afternoon- light and whimsical, while still maintaining a respectable level of grunge.
Wolf + Lamb
Wolf + Lamb
Wolf + Lamb, on the other hand, were lethal, playing off of each other, as well as the crowd, to deliver a fully Disco ("Indie Disco") set. It was funky, quirky, original and fun. They were a "must see" for many people there that weekend and they did not disappoint. From their creative outfits and exuberant dancing to their actual music selection, their's was a show to remember.
Where Wolf + Lamb left off, Matthew Dear picked right up with the straight-Techno set we were all anticipating. Towering over the decks, his mix rivaled that of Saunderson's from the night before. Deep, dark and groovin', his live set was incredible. From the minute he stepped up on stage to when he gracefully threw the music and the vibes to TEED, Matthew Dear fully captivated the crowd. He held the attention of just about everyone for the entirety of his performance, serving tack after track of originality intermingled with grunge.
Playing off the vibes Matthew Dear (quite literally) threw him, TEED surprised us with his live DJ set. It was, without a doubt, the best way to end the weekend. He danced along the boarder between Tech House, Techno and Garage, ending two days of straight music with a bang.
For a brand-new festival, Dirty 313ectronic did a stand up job. It was organized, laid-back and brought together a group of artists whose personal styles meshed extremely well together. Not too shabby for your third time around!
Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs closing out the weekend