I?ve been away from Ibiza since November, with some work and travels through London, New Zealand, Fiji & Australia, travelling solo & loving it. But, summer is just around the corner, and I?ve been looking forward to a proper catch up with my long time friend & label partner, Ben Fhurst. So, I was very happy to have secured us a gig over in Andorra where we could reconnect the way we know best – Ben on the decks, me on the dance floor (with a camera in hand too of course) !
How did this all come about? Well, last year one of our film crew had been talking us up to his Andorra crew & Sebastian Diaz from Loop 54 came down to our Follow Us night at Sankeys Ibiza where we got to catch up and he got to hear Ben Fhurst?s set in the Spektrum. We?ve been in talks ever since, searching for a suitable date for us to join them at Loop 54 in Andorra. With me on my way back to Ibiza this weekend & Ben?s Ibiza gigs only starting last Thursday at Restaurant It Ibiza?s Aperitivo night, the dates worked perfectly to squeeze in our Andorra debut just before the Ibiza summer began.
On Saturday, I left the first sunny morning London had seen in months, to arrive at a surprisingly cold, wet & grey Barcelona.
It was like I?d gone the wrong way! But Ben was only an hour behind en route from Ibiza, and soon we?d be boarding the bus to Andorra where a dinner, hotel, night out & new friends awaited us.
While on my travels down south, I was on a big detox, abstaining from meat eating, as well many other toxins, and it was as if the Loop 54 crew knew about this & felt they had to do something about it right away!!?
We arrived to a warm welcome from the owners of Loop 54, at an Argentinian, open grill restaurant, where MEAT was the only treat on the menu. We spoke music, party & travels as we got to know our new friends over a very filling meat feast,? preparing us for the night of dancing ahead.
We had some time to quickly check in to our hotel, drop off our bags & dust off the travels before the doors to Loop opened at midnight. On our way, Seb took us past another club just up the road called ?Monopol 80?s? which his sister runs. Seb project managed the design, music & decor so we enjoyed getting to check out another one of the venues he?s involved in. It?s an 80?s, Saturday night fever style club, with vinyls on the walls, light boxes on the dance floor, night rider, grease lightning, rubix cubes, boom boxes and much more of the 80?s icons all over the walls. One quick shot from the bar & we were on our way.
I love the feeling of Loop 54. Its a ground floor, single level club. It?s small & intimate, just the way we like it. The venue is known for attracting musically educated clubbers, and those that are up for some further schooling on the dancefloor. The music policy is house & techno, no requests, no commercial, no despacito (this was even written on the flyer, love it!), a smoke machine & some lasers – a proper little underground venue that reminded me of some of my earliest days discovering dance music.
There was only a handful of people there when we arrived, but by 2am, throughout Sebastian?s set, the venue filled up track after track. Seb played a great opening set, heavier & more chunky than we expected, and the crowd were embracing it completely, which encouraged Ben to come in strong from the start.
Ben played a killer set. And I?m not just saying that, I loved every second of it, as did he, and for the dedicated clubber, there?s nothing better than a DJ loving the night as much as you while he?s up there spinning his tunes! I?ve got so many highlights from the night, but here?s some of my top moments I had to share.
1: I?ve seen a lot of DJs in my time, and it really does make such a difference for me when they have a damn good time while DJ-ing. On Saturday night, Ben was giving out all kinds of enthusiastic energy, bouncing around behind the decks & busting out some new manoeuvres I haven?t seen before 😉 His energy transmitted to the crowd & it was like a tennis match of good vibes being passed from the crowd to the DJ & back again.
2: On the flight over from London, I?d been thinking about one of my favourite tracks Ben brought to our ears in 2015, Epika – buy Guy Mantzur. I love this track & it reminds me of good times with Ben, Steve & myself in Casa de Los Hermanos back when we lived in Salinas in 2015. I had almost considered suggesting he play it, but I would never actually make a request in a DJ set. So, I felt pretty damn special when Ben signalled to me across the room, pointed down to the decks & said ?next ones for you? and of course, it was Epika. Telepathic legend of a DJ he is, thank you Ben Fhurst, what a track !!
3: Always a proud moment for me when Ben drops one of our label releases in a set. I love getting to feel the crowd reactions first hand, and Sean Branton?s ?Momentum? from our Lucky Nights Techno Series went down a real treat at loop on Saturday. If you haven?t heard it before, have a little listen right here.
4: Another big highlight for me was the last hour of the night, when Aaron, the owner of Loop 54, jumped in on the decks for his set, and soon after, Ben and Seb were both back on for a b2b2b till lights came on. I think some true friendships were formed in that hour.
The club closed up at 5am, but when the lights came on, the people didn?t want to go home! Eventually, after a night of house & techno, the evening?s musical treats ended in a gentle way with Aaron playing us some of his favourite reggae, followed by a cheeky lock in with the owners & the staff. We kept on dancing while Ben & Aaron continued playing some of their favourite tracks, like two kids showing off their favourite toys to a new best friend.
A top night had by all, and one we definitely hope to do again, and next time we?ll stay for longer than a day and get out there early enough to hit the slopes. The next morning, we woke up to a beautiful sunshine day in Andorra, with the sounds of a massive river running out the back of our hotel. We went for a cruise through town, took advantage of some of Andorra?s 4.5% tax & treated ourselves to some gifts & a lunch before continuing on to Barcelona & eventually back in Ibiza by midnight Sunday.
What a trip, loved that night ! Next up, Ben plays an Amsterdam Kings Day boat party on 27 April after having played on last Thursday at Restaurant IT Ibiza.
See you all at the next event in your city.