The West Coast Needs Love Too

Its 11 in Kingston which means it’s time for a nap and then a couple hours of Weddy-Weddy and then a longer nap. But in New York Brent Arnold is sacrificing a Afreet while Jace runs an ekg strapped to its chest through his Sufi Plug-Ins to make sure everyone is in tune for tomorrows free Nettle show at Zebulon. If that isn’t enough to make me fly back, New York Tropical finally starts back up on Friday. But the West Coast Needs Love Too. Joseph Stewart is helping to bring a little more intimacy to Los Angeles on Thursday- I asked him a few questions about what his new night, 2True is all about.

T: What inspired y’all to start the night?

J: My club partner Max Krivitzky and I went to see Kyle Hall and Carl Craig play at a big Scion-sponsored event in a cheesy Hollywood club and the promoter had hired a Funktion-One soundsystem. I’d never heard anything like it in my life. I’m an audio engineer and studied electronic music in school so I’m very sensitive to the quality of sound but before that night I’d never thought that level of fidelity was possible in a club environment. One of the reasons I love sound is that it literally touches you – sound itself is the compression and rarefaction of air exciting your insides – and on a Funktion-One system you feel it very clearly all around your head and chest and it’s not painful. That night Max and I started talking about how great it would be to have that kind of sound for more underground parties with no theme and minimal “production”.

T: Given that the lineup looks pretty similar to parties that seem to jump off every week, what are you guys going to offer that isn’t already going on in L.A.?

J: We are very lucky at the moment to have a good thing developing here in LA but since Wildness (Wu Tsang, Total Freedom and Nguzunguzu’s old party) stopped happening we’ve had to chase the dance a little bit. Mustache Mondays and A Club Called Rhonda in particular are always incredible and book amazing djs, but we’re after something a little more intimate with where djs can really experiment and do things they wouldn’t normally in a larger venue. The non-theme is – great sound, small room and international bass musics (particularly of the house diaspora). As for the lineup, Total Freedom, Kingdom and the Nguzus are not only friends but 4 our favorite djs and majorly inspirational to us so it only made sense to invite them to play our first night. Also our friend Hans-Nikke Nielsen, a recent transplant from Perth and very talented dj, is actually making what I believe is his first LA appearance…

T: What’s inspiring to you about nightclub spaces, why make more nightclub space?

J: I think the main thing is that they facilitate what our friend the artist Brian Rogers called “an impersonal intimacy,” which people talk about in histories of the Paradise Garage or any famously mixed club. Reading your account of the Baile funk in Brazil reminded me of this as did Wildness (Wu Tsang, an artist who organized Wildness with Total Freedom and Nguzunguzu, is working on a film, Damelo Todo, that works on these social relationships). I guess we want to create a sonically-activated safe-space for impersonal intimacy. More wisdom from Brian: “Music is always promiscuous, always crossing borders…it’s us that have to catch up and make good on that.”

T: What is the dream for 2true? And how does that fit into the existing scene in L.A.

J:We’d really like to develop enough of a regular draw so that we can eventually focus pretty much entirely on unknown and emerging djs except for a few special events. This is a very exciting time for dance music and we have heard enough bedroom djs and producers around the world blow our minds to know that we want to hear things develop regularly on a Funktion-One with a sweaty room full of our closest friends. We don’t really know how that will fit into our existing scene but we’re psyched to find out.