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Monday, October 8, 2012

Body & SOUL Is the Best Party Ever

Posted By on Mon, Oct 8, 2012 at 3:30 AM

Page 2 of 2

KAHLEY AVALON EMERSON
  • Kahley Avalon Emerson

At one point, I remember closing my eyes. Sheets of sound bathing my senses, my body almost completely worked over. The RLA was screaming, the midrange and highs so loud that they bled over into distortion. Was it Loleatta Holloway's "Love Sensation" or some obscenely obscure house track? I can't say, it was one moment, but Joe Claussell was on either way. The tail of his white headband was swinging back and forth as he created entirely new flows and directions in the music. My ears singed and my senses overloaded -- he pushed the volume so loud that it seemed we might all lose consciousness. Holloway screaming through the speakers, rushing up towards another climax, "Tiiiime wooont taaake my love a---waaaaaaay" The sheer power of it all is indescribable, but then he did the impossible! He cut the sound out from maximum, ear-shredding volume to a mere whisper. So filled with passion, he fell to the floor. Screams from the dancefloor, you could see people slumped over like they'd just been punched in the gut. Looking up at the booth, Joe's head peeked out just so, only his eyes visible. As he picked himself up, so too did the volume rise, swirling around like a growing cloud of smoke, the song contorted up before slamming us back down into a long rhythmic interlude -- some fresh air for a breath before it got even more intense.

KAHLEY AVALON EMERSON
  • Kahley Avalon Emerson

There's a long passage of time that I have a hard time remembering, two -- maybe three -- hours where it seemed as though the fabric of time and space had been ripped apart. Where were we? Where was I? Talking with some people afterwards, nobody seemed to know. All that mattered was the totality of it all, we were lost in a sea of sound, hit over the head with an essential message that seemed so comforting in our society's current obsession with status and material wealth. All that remains is a haze of vaguely remembered melodies and rhythms: Reese & Santonios "Rock to the Beat," Prince's "Erotic City," Stevie Wonder's "As," and even Lenny Kravitz's "Are You Gonna Go My Way" -- a song I hate, but which in context was entirely appropriate. Moments in triplet, moments in psych-rock, moments in the absolute deepest pockets of house (I wish I could share some titles with you, but I'm out of my league).

Four a.m. and the lights were on, but we were all still dancing. Now well into the third bardo, the intensity had passed, and the party had shifted toward its eventual end. If metaphors are any use, the landing was less a smooth glide than a slow bounce. We'd hit the runway and then lift up, then touch baseline again. Back up and then down, before gliding into the morning with the uplifting message of Chaka Khan's "I Know You, I Live You."

Good doesn't describe it, platonic ideal gets closer. This is what it should be, and I'm glad that I was there to hear it. My only complaint is that it should have lasted longer, and while I understand they booked another party the next day, I think I speak for everyone when I say that I wish it had gone until the posted 5 a.m. cutoff. But that's a minor complaint given just how good it was.

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Derek Opperman

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