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Club Review

Reviewed: Jika Jika! Festival 2018



There is a real revolution in Ireland right now. More and more DJs and producers are emerging and making their mark on the world stage, and the party scene has never been more vibrant.

Helping to make it so is Jika Jika! Festival, which took place in Derry’s former army barracks at Ebrington Square on August Bank Holiday weekend, 2018.

There were stages curated by Denis Sulta and Green Velvet, plus superstars like Octave One, Steffi, Willow, Patrick Topping, Charlotte De Witte and Louisahhh!!! all playing, and it was a fantastic event with great attention to detail, quality production and all importantly, excellent sound systems.

If you didn’t make it, you missed out, but worry not — here are six moments from the first edition that should mean you add it to do your to-do list for 2019!

Octave One dropping ‘Blackwater’

No one does a live show as well as Octave One. The Detroit brothers bring a truck load of gear and cook up fizzing techno tracks and euphoric house grooves with real style. Of course, the biggest moment is always when they drop their classic ‘Blackwater’. When they did, the crowd surged forwards and went wild, as you can see in the video below!


Patrick Topping and Green Velvet impromptu B2B

Two tech house heavyweights are from very different worlds and very different generations but they found plenty of common musical ground when they went back to back. It was unplanned, too, which made it all the more special, as did their obviously flourishing friendship. The pair danced together throughout and it was a great memory.


Charlotte De Witte going hard

The Belgian techno star takes no prisoners, and so it was as soon as she stepped up at 7pm. She wasted no time in dropping tough, unrelenting grooves, and the famously up for it Irish crowd went with her, getting stuck right in. When she dropped Green Velvet’s classic ‘Percolator’ the place erupted in whoops and cheers and it was another spine-tingling moment.


Denis Sulta dropping the heat

The famously marmite DJ is playful and risk-taking. He can play cheeky classics that send people into a frenzy or keep it more serious and classy. When he dropped Gimbere’s ‘A Thing’, the subtle, percolating euphoria of the track and heavy drums worked perfectly to get the crowd busting with excitement and desperate for the drop. When it came – scenes.


Green Velvet teasing unreleased tunes

Not one to be outdone, the Chicago legend that is Green Velvet also played some pretty big cuts and got some pretty big reactions. When he played his writhing, unreleased ‘Deceiver’, a collaboration with Chris Lake, the crowd pulled bass faces, stomped with fever and punched the air endlessly. It’s a classically raw, strobe-lit jam from Green Velvet and really made an impact.

Steffi’s techno masterclass

The Dolly boss show her class once more with a slick, futuristic, emotive set of slippery electro and Detroit infused techno that got heads down and feet marching. One of the standout moments was her dropping Voiski’s subtly uplifting remix of Basic Soul Unit’s ‘Wallow’ off her own label. It was a moment of beautiful release in a truly absorbing set.

Grahame Farmer

Grahame Farmer’s love affair with electronic music goes back to the mid-90s when he first began to venture into the UK’s beloved rave culture, finding himself interlaced with some of the country’s most seminal club spaces. A trip to dance music’s anointed holy ground of Ibiza in 1997 then cemented his sense of purpose and laid the foundations for what was to come over the next few decades of his marriage to the music industry.

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