Playlist: GRDN Gold Volume 4: Electronic Vinyl for Halloween New Year

Graham LeBron
10 30, 2015

Over the last few months, I've been part of a crew that has been working on organizing an amazing event this Saturday, Halloween New Year, at my new favorite venue, Starline Social Club.

It's going to an amazing night taking place on all 3 floors, the place is going to be firing on all cylinders, believe me. There are 4 groups playing songs by their favorite artists, Prince, The Cure, E.S.G., and Nirvana.

Oakland electro favorites, GO DARK, are headlining on the release of their BrightWild EP. Check out the video game they made and download the EP for free! We've also got a costume contest with $200 prize, fortune tellers, a secret absinthe bar, multiple DJs, and of course, a pumpkin drop at midnight.  The lighting and video projections by Luke Judd are going to blow your mind. 

I suppose I should explain that part. When I used to live at Lobot Gallery, an art space in West Oakland started by Starline Co-founder. Adam Hatch, we would make our own holidays to replace ones we didn't like. It started with Valentine's Day, not our favorite, so we combined 2 we did like and came up with Thanks-o-ween. You dress up and bring a dish to a huge dinner with all our friends, especially single ones. Much better, right? So, we decided to ramp up Halloween by adding in the celebratory vibe of New Year's Eve. It adds a little more joy to an already festive occasion, plus we drop a pumpkin filled with candy at midnight and celebrate the Halloween New Year. Adam and I decided it was time to revive the tradition at the Starline and even take it up a notch. It is rumored there will be multiple pumpkins dropping from the ceiling of our expansive ballroom this year.

Get your tickets now, it will sell out.

So, this mix, is made for the Dance Dungeon that is being created by my friend and accomplished electronic musician, Stevedood. He asked me for an hour of electronic music, and I took it as an opportunity to showcase my house and electronic tastes. This is about as I ever delve into this kind of stuff and I think it turned out pretty well.

I grew up going to dance clubs from about age 15. There was quite a club scene in Dallas in the late 80s and early 90s. I would only later discover that I was very fortunate that there were all ages clubs with DJs being influenced more by the music coming from NYC, Chicago, and abroad than anything else in Texas. It was quite an eclectic musical upbringing and I spent a great number of afternoons at record stores trying to figure out what song it was I had heard the night before. How else could I find out? We were usually too intimidated to ask the DJ, because most of the time he wouldn't tell you anyway.

Which, by the way, I've always made a point of not doing. It's not like it's their music to keep to themselves, right?

Though I don't go clubbing much anymore, I've always kept a general eye on dance music, especially as it has continued to rear its head in pop music. I've never been a fan of the highly derivative, repetitive house music that seems to split into smaller and smaller genres every year. The whole formula with the breaks and the drops leaves me cold. I gravitate more toward the trippier stuff or the artists that use more interesting textures and perhaps even subtle pop song structures.

That's what this mix is. There are 2 tracks from my favorite electronic album of the moment, Daniel T.'s "Tetrachromat", some semi oldies but goodies by Royksopp, Bomba Estereo and Lusine. Techno pop pioneers, Vince Clarke and Martin Gore have a project called VCMG that fits right in here. Mike Simonetti's (ex-Italians Do It Better) new project, Pale Blue, also brings the groove. Along with Is Tropical, Palmbomen II, a track from a great Soul Jazz comp called Sounds of the Universe, and a few tracks from the Young Adults label that I've just been getting into. I always gotta throw in a jam from on my favorite Bay Area producers, The Beat Broker. It is an hour of great dance music. If you're into that kind of thing.

Either way, if you live in the Bay Area, I highly recommend Saturday night at the Starline. See you there!

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