Reviewed: Ushuaïa 4th August
Back at the poolside party-plaza Ushuaïa for the second consecutive day, where the night before was definitively European/dance-music orientated, tonight’s affair was a decidedly more Urban, with a very heavy UK bias, soaring through Grime, 2-step, UKG, some Jungle, and more.
Shy FX appeared earlier than expected, dropping all kinds of madness, and the first of many instances of “Pow!”. The London-based legend was bookended by Sammy Porter, DJ Charlesy, CJ Sax, Stamina MC, and Yungen. There was a much more jovial and energetic vibe in the venue than before – a curious excitement, if you will. Not just due to the acts that were still yet to come, but also because of the number of British people in attendance. It felt at one point a place of pilgrimage, where not only were London voices heard in and amongst the crowd, but also on stage, shouting triumphantly at the 70% British audience. It was definitely set to be a special evening.
Everything was going well: the crowd was nice and the sun was turning the browned browner, relieving everyone of fluid… litres at a time! After Charlie Sloth closed his set on a quick run through the SU classics (Oasis, Bon Jovi), our hero & saviour graced the decks. Yes, DJ EZ embalmed the scorched masses with his trademark tune-jumping, bandying about everything from classic Garage to contemporary Grime, like cellulite in a twerking bum-cheek. The energy shot through the air, across the aeroplanes passing overhead, into the stratosphere, and slammed back down with the arrival of the next stomper cued up in session. Every tune a banger, every banger a classic – and yes, ‘Pow!’ turned up again.
What was interesting, however, is that while the previous night’s monumental breakdowns came – as is true Ibiza fashion – in the form of epic build-ups and synth laden climaxes, here EZ was simply dropping acapella tracks, and letting them go until he brought another piece of roar-inducing joy in underneath it. A simple-but-effective use of his tools, he reminded us all of not just what the underground tends to sound like, but the intensity of Old Skool.
Once the man took himself away from the spotlight, leaving us in fatigue-ridden bliss, the stage was set for headliner Tinie Tempah. With every song his own, the show was another light & laser fest, this time with added dancers! Tempah’s performance reiterated how many of his pieces were hits, and why most of them charted at #1 at some point or another. Descending into an Ibiza-themed section, which followed an endearing story about his initial experiences with Swedish House Mafia, he rounded the evening off well, closing the night with a bang!
In the ninth week of its residency, if you’re looking for a more Urban alternative to what most of Ibiza has to offer, this is where you want to be! “YEEEEAAHHH!”