It had been too long since the last trip to San Francisco. The last time I went to a massive here was Cyberfest 2003 by Coolworld. So, looking at the lineup for Love Parade aka Love Fest, to be held on September 23rd got me pretty hopped up.
Christy and I had actually booked our hotel room for that weekend by a coincidence, specifically; it was our three-year anniversary. We began our relationship by going to Cyberfest 2003 together, which was a pretty good first date.
So here we are, three years later, almost to the day, in the same city, the same hotel, and we are getting ready to go to San Francisco's new end of summer electronic music mega party.
Before the official "after party" had begun, which is the only party that we made it to, there was a big parade with floats made of trucks. The floats ran threw the city and eventually parked in front of city hall playing all sorts of techno. From what I gathered it was quite a parade, but partying from 8 pm until 4 am seemed like enough, so skipping the daytime portion was no big deal.
Arriving on the scene, we were greeted by music still bumping and thumping in front of the Bill Grahm Event Center.
What a scene it was, to see Ravers of all ages getting down in front of city hall, and what a credit to San Francisco for being one of the only cities in the United States that would be cool enough to allow such a thing.
In general, San Francisco is a model city, especially when it comes to civil rights and liberties. Here, at least, individual rights count for something.
Majority rules politics, by comparison, is a simple-minded way to determine how everyone should act and what they should be allowed to do.
On the subject of politics, it took a bit of deal making to get anywhere near the front of the Guest List line where our tickets were waiting. If we actually had gone directly to the back, you may not be reading this article right now as the line seemed to be growing in length and width the entire time we were in it. Many times I saw would be ticket holders lose ground in the battle, actually going backward, to reach the ticket window.
Thanks to many years of work on Ravers Digest, I got my hands on our ticket in less than 20 minutes while some people must have waited for hours in the Guest List Line for VIP tickets. How many hours, I cannot say.
A few minutes and mental moves later the security guard at the door had cleared us for take off, and as all good Ravers Digest stories justly begin ... we were in !!!
Most everybody else was outside at this point, but that was fine, since it gave me a chance to explore the venue crowd free.
Simply put, the center area was an enormous Trance room containing a giant dance floor, numerous video projectors, oodles of speakers, and enough lasers to crush the rebel alliance. Maybe the biggest and best light show ever, really it was spectacular.
BUT, a Trance room alone does not a massive make. To the left was a House room that was much smaller, about 60 feet wide and 150 feet long. To the right was an identically shaped jungle room that was silenced by a power problem, thankfully not an equipment failure.
To most this would be q big disappointment, but for me it was just a throw back to back in the day, the summer of 2000, when raves exploded in popularity, Jungle records advanced disproportionately in noisiness, and virtually every party had sound problems in the Jungle room. Back in the day, all it took was a good mix to literally set the amps on fire. Thanks to advances in the art of sound stages, this is now a distant memory that only a few of you can claim.
Minutes later, the sound in the Jungle room came back on, and did not quit again all night long.
The party had started only in that the music was playing and people were beginning to shuffle in. That O. So Special feeling of the party "going off" was not hitting me just yet. That would not happen until around midnight, when there was so much energy and excitement in every room, every square inch of that mother fucker that I felt the super special and slightly sad feeling of being in love with a point in time, a love that just simply cannot last, a blissful feeling that I have felt many times before only to have felt the pain of losing that love an equal number of times.
Tonight, actually, was more special than most thanks not only to the World-class line up or stellar production quality or the event itself. Tonight was extra-extra special because of all the great San Francisco party people we met, most notably an outrageously sexy female named Mellisa. A man eater class hottie! We're talking center of the sun hot!!!
For most men enjoying their 3 year anniversary this would have been a brief encounter, but luckily for me Christy is as fair as she is bodacious, and she too took a liking to the ultra sexy Mellisa as well. Best of all, Mellisa came with a lover named Morgan. Morgan was a hot little girl [Morgan was actually an adult] and not a man, which is why I said "best of all" instead of "unfortunately".
So anyway, back to the party... uhm, er what was I saying?
Oh yeah, so we were at this Skills party called Love "something" and this shit was going off!!!
Bad Boy Bill was ripping it up in the House room, which to be fair, he always does, the guy is a pro, and Donald was there too, and Dan. Hell yeah, it was the rave legends of House.
But really, the final set of the night, in the Jungle room, after Diesel Boy, was the one and only king of the Jungle, Aphrodite. Pulling tunes from the dark ages of Jungle, when the complexity of track production came second to the basic appeal of a rolling bass line and only perfect break beat drum patterns were used.
I can't say if only a world class DJ can get away with playing records that were played out years ago, but GOD DAMN it sounded good right about now.
To report accurately on his set, he did also include a few dub plates.
I love that jungle has evolved and mutated drastically so many times in the last decade, and there are countless epics that could not have been produced if Jungle remained eternally in the dark ages, but like the color black, sex, and an enormous bash, some things are always in fashion.