The Butler Did It: A night in Zagreb with Hercules & Love Affair Soundsystem


What better way to end an Electronic Beats Presents tour than with numeorus guests dancing on stage alongside Andy Butler? Last night, a good chunk of Zagreb’s music fans learned that here is none.

After sucessful gigs in Amsterdam and Warsaw, Electronic Beats Presents tour ended the exact same way we wanted it to end – inside the packed and jolly venue Tvornica Kulture, with charismatic Butler behind the decks and his energetic vocalists Rouge and Gustaph in front of them. The whole two-hour show was audio-streamed by internet Radio808, whose DJs also supported the show via warmup and closing performances.

It was wonderful seeing so many fans of Hercules and Love Affair (and of EB) gathering again. Maybe we all got a bit emotional because it went down at the same venue where the first-ever Croatian EB festival was held, remembered by many because of a stunning lineup of Roisin Murphy, Digitalism, TEED and other artists at the same stage two seasons ago. Maybe it was because the show last night closed a successful festival-and-music-filled 2012 for us and our crew. Maybe we were just in the mood for some seriously danceable disco—or maybe it was a combination of all three. Whatever the case, it was a love affair Zagreb won’t soon forget. ~









Photos: Matej Grgić

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Electronic Beats Video Highlights 2012

2012 was an exciting year; from a New Order Exhibition to an exclusive Pet Shop Boys Show, we’ve done it all—and we even filmed most of it! This is an audiovisual journey, so let’s just drop some names and then lean back and watch: Squarepusher, Hot Chip, Dillon, Modeselektor, I Heart Sharks, Woodkid, Hudson Mohawke, Mostly Robot and more more more!

April: Electronic Beats Festival Gdańsk

May: Electronic Beats Festival Cologne

June: New Order Exhibition and Concert in Berlin

July: Electronic Beats Festival Bratislava

September: Pet Shop Boys Live in Berlin

Electronic Beats Festival Budapest

October: Electronic Beats Festival Vienna

Electronic Beats Festival Zagreb

November: Electronic Beats Presents in Podgorica, Montenegro

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Hold tight Zagreb, EB presents Hercules and Love Affair Soundsystem live and streaming this Saturday

What’s that thing about good things coming in threes? That. The third and final stop-off for Hercules and Love Affair Soundsystem’s European jaunt—presented by Electronic Beats—is scheduled to touch down this Saturday 15 December in Zagreb, Croatia. After the Vogue warfare of Amsterdam and the impromptu onstage football of Warsaw, heaven knows what Andy Butler and his gang of disco renegades have in store this time. Best take your vitamins beforehand.

You can still get tickets by visiting the link on our frontpage or by clicking here, but you’d be wise to hurry because they’re selling fast. If you don’t manage to land tickets (we said hurry!) or just can’t make it to Zagreb we’re happy to stump up the next best thing. The event will be streamed live via Radio 808 from 9 p.m onwards, with Butler et al taking to the stage at 11 p.m. Radio 808 will also be providing support on the night courtesy of two Radio 808 Soundsystem DJ sets. Be there, or tune in, just don’t miss. Christmas will be ruined.

21:00 Doors
21:00-23:00 Radio808 Soundsystem
23:00-01:00 Hercules And Love Affair Soundsystem
01:00-03:00 Radio808 Soundsystem

Open Radio 808 stream here

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Hercules and Love Affair Soundsystem live in Warsaw

It was a long, cold, December night in Warsaw, Poland. Well, actually, it was not cold at all. At least nowhere near the Basen venue where this Electronic Beats Presents party took place. The show was sold out and no surprise at all—it was the grand finale of the wonderful season. Exactly year ago Electronic Beats’ program finally reached Poland, starting with a blast: The Electronic Beats Festival in Warsaw, starring Groove Armada and Wiley. Then we had another festival, in April, in the beautiful city of Gdańsk, with James Blake, Squarepusher and Digitalism headlining, and afterwards Electronic Beats reached Katowice, with the memorable OFF Festival before party, including Chew Lips. There’s no doubt EB already belongs in Poland and both the artists and the audience proved it once again last night.
The doors opened at 9.30 p.m. and half an hour later the party really started. First up were Polish duo Last Robots—a poetic name for a first act. A huge picture of moon was displayed behind the backs of Igor and Bert, too focused on their job to even notice, and we sensed it was going to be long and adventurous trip. However, it had to begin somehow (props go to the guy with red baseball cap who entered the dancefloor immediately) and Last Robots set a pitch perfect mood; massaging mild electro waves into irresistible house. Once they achieved momentum, it wasn’t easy for dancing crowd to stop.

But hey, it was midnight already, Moonlight Matters time! And he certainly wouldn’t want to prevent anyone from having a good time. Sebastian Vandevoorde brought his a-game with an eye to making it be bigger and better than everything else that night. He served more catchy choruses than everyone else, more vocal hooks, more of, well, everything actually. Did the walls tremble because of the bass tornado coming out of the speakers or was it because of hundreds of dancers shaking their bums to the sexy, fat funk tunes? The answer will never be known with certainty. Moonlight Matters is known for his own productions released under the Kitsune label as well as remixes for pop giants like Adele or Moby and certainly knows how to grab your attention, drawing you irresistably from the bar to the middle of the ‘floor. And it’s really impossible to resist when you hear hits like New Order’s “Blue Monday” or even ABBA’s “Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!” included in the frenetic house and disco set.
By the time that Hercules And Love Affair Soundsystem got onstage, straight off a plane from Moscow, the crowd was sweating. They looked a little tired when we met them at the backstage a couple of minutes before, but once they started the show we understood why… They were coming to the end of exhausting European tour that encapsulates barely controlled big room madness. During the soundcheck Andy Butler said that a venue like Basen, with its huge walls of concrete and steel, demands some really massive sound and he kept his promise! Hercules and Love Affair Soundsystem sounded like the disco/house golden era was right here, right now—and we believed Warsaw actually was the capital of dance music last night, indeed, we dare everyone to say it wasn’t! Winter? Forget it. At this stage it was so hot in a fully packed Basen that Andy got rid of his shirt after fifteen minutes and Gustaph, one of the vocalists, was running around in his short pants. Speaking of vocalists—they were not there just for singing, they also vogued like crazy, proving Amsterdam wasn’t a one off. If anyone came packing the party vibes, they did, alongside with a distinct whiff of chaos: football onstage, anyone? Well, it gives a new spin to the whole “DJ Kicks” series, doesn’t it? ~
Find more event photos on Facebook and Google+.
Text: Jarek Szubrycht | Photos: Adam Burakowski / T-Mobile Music

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Podgorica Live Review: EB presents Montenegro

Last night, Karin Park, Fil Lavin and The Brandt Brauer Frick Ensemble performed at Crnogorsko Narodno Pozoriste Theater in Podgorica, Montenegro.


The show was sold out. There was an immense demand for tickets in Montenegro’s capital, also because the tickets were offered at an affordable price. The concert featuring Karin Park, The Brandt Brauer Frick Ensemble and DJ Fin Lavin took place in a 382-seat venue, the capital’s National Theater – the Crnogorsko narodno pozorište. You have to bear in mind that only few artists ever pay Montenegro a visit on their tours. So, also for this reason, the debut concerts of Karin Park and The Brandt Brauer Frick Ensemble were highly anticipated by the audience. It became most visible at the small bar at the back of the hall: Everybody wanted to drink, so the small bar that usually serves audiences at classical concerts eventually collapsed as they basically ran out of drinks. But even more notably, here everybody was dancing.


Below: Podgorica’s local hero Fil Lavin aka Filip Jankovic


Karin Park delivered a strong performance together with her brother David on drums – as reference points Fever Ray and Robyn come to mind. Perhaps it is no surprise that all three are of Swedish origin. Without attempting to play down Karin’s captivating vocal performance, I want to put special emphasis on David Park and his drum sound. Using his feet, he triggers sounds and effects, while he plays the drums with his hands. No wonder that the Park siblings received standing ovations after their set – cheered by the ever-enthusiastic Podgorica audience.


Below: Karin Park




Following next: The Brandt Brauer Frick Ensemble (watch the video of their live set at last year’s Electronic Beats Festival in Vienna). If you have ever been to a concert of The Brandt Brauer Frick Ensemble you’d know that their subtle orchestral music, touched by electronic sonics, doesn’t seem to fit into such an euphoric backdrop. But by persistently intensifying their repetetive and hypnotic music, Brandt Brauer Frick and ensemble managed to lure the audience into a whole different musical world. They probably played some tunes faster, or they may have added the electronic sound elements less subtley than usual. Be it as it may – they built up a completely different kind of tension compared to the dark electronics of Karin Park. And again: dancing people, including the security guards, at the bar and standing ovations by the audience when their set had finally come to an end.


Below: The Brandt Brauer Frick Ensemble




Due to the National Theater’s curfew at 11:30 p.m., most of the concert-goers, all the film crews as well as some of the artists went to the nearby Alan Ford Caffe to continue the party to the sound of DJ Fil Lavin of Montenegro origin – the same DJ who had been spinning tracks in between the concert slots at the Electronic Beats presents Montenegro just an hour before. To me, that was the most beautiful aspect of it all: that the party continued and that these two spaces were mutually linked thanks to Lavin.


Here are two links:


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