Reviewed: The Summer Chapter (Saturday)
The Rainbow Venues are responsible for bringing in the biggest names in dance music to the second city. The Summer Chapter has been highly anticipated over the coming months as one the most go to festivals on the UK circuit. It was clear that the Saturday was purely a Techno affair. Blackdot is renowned for showcasing the biggest artists within the world of Techno and tonight was no different. Berghain favourite Marcel Dettmann and the Italian duo known to the world as Tale of Us headlined the bill.
When entering Room 1 in the Blackbox it was clear that if God created a room for Techno this was it. The aesthetics and the sound of the room are what hit me the most. The room was incredibly stripped back with low ceilings and the lighting just right, it was subtle but effective. The red vibrant lighting seemed to work effortlessly as it created an industrial atmosphere.
It was coming up to 1:45 and Walking With Kings were finishing off their beautifully delivered set which warmed the hearts of the crowd enough for them to be prepared for the upcoming storm. There was a nice sense of awe in the room and you could sense the excitement for Tale of Us to take to the stage. The Blackbox was nice and busy with plenty of room to dance. This is one of the beauties I found with the space. As Tale of Us took to the stage I had high expectations and obviously heard great things, so it would take a lot to wow me. Tale of Us did exactly that, they wowed me by providing a beautifully structured melodic Techno set that took me into frenzy, I wasn’t alone in this I’m sure. The long build-ups that could have lasted for a couple of minutes then unleashed into a ferocious drop, when I say ferocious I don’t necessarily mean heavy but emotional and melodic. The crowd took to this and engaged by chanting along, creating an atmosphere that I have struggled to find in the UK before. Tale of Us had the audience in the palm of their hands, teasing them by layering over tracks and creating a suspense amongst the Techno heads of Brum. It might sound corny when a DJ says I want to take the crowd on a journey, you’ve probably heard it all before but Tale of Us did create a journey, their unique style seemed to blend in perfectly with the lighting and the excellent acoustics of the Blackbox, this created the perfect vibe for a summer bank holiday. As I looked around it was nice to see keen ravers responding to what could only be described as alternative Techno.
Having lost complete sense of time, due to my battery going dead on my phone, I could tell that Tale of Us were coming to an end due to their choice of track selection, god knows how long they were playing for, it’s like the old saying: time goes quick when you’re having fun! When Marcel Dettmann took to the stage, I was so excited! Probably due to seeing one of my favourite artists so local. I had no question that Marcel would deliver and I was right, his set outlined everything a techno rave should be, an intense affair with continuous groove. His set consisted of his trademark minimal sound, which seemed to travel right through my body. It is clearly evident why Dettmann is a regular in a club as prestigious as Berghain. His selections were world class causing the dance floor into a never-ending frenzy.
It is so clear why artists like to play in the Blackbox, I mean why wouldn’t they? The venue is perfect for the scene, the sound, space and carefully curated line-up create the perfect ingredients for any keen raver. The Summer Chapter was everything I expected and more, it is great for the second city to host events such as these, everything was spot on. The Rainbow Venues as an institution is the go to place for any raver, not just in the midlands but also across the UK and Europe. I can’t wait for what’s in store next year, if you can’t wait until then a certain Nina Kraviz is bringing her unique sound to Birmingham alongside the highly rated Bjarki. If you consider yourself a lover of Techno, be sure to add this to your diary.