January 15, 2011 | 12:00pm
Friday, January 14, 2011
Better Than: Reliving the electroclash era through its unfortunate haircuts and makeup.
With about a decade's distance now from electroclash's birth in proto-hipster South Williamsburg, it seems grossly unfair to still categorize the scene's stars as such. The groups who most thoroughly embraced the trend long ago disbanded (Anyone remember Dirty Sanchez? Creme de Menthe? W.I.T.? No? Oh. Thought so.) Meanwhile, the talented producers and DJs have changed with the times. (Although, come to think of it, whither Larry Tee?)
And, thank god. While the Internet keeps shrinking the nostalgia cycle, it still seems too soon for a misty-eyed look at electroclash. So those hoping Miss Kittin would provide it last night were probably disappointed, for at least the first two hours after she took the Vagabond stage at 1 a.m.
This was to everyone else's benefit. Miss Kittin, of course, enjoyed a successful DJ/producing career before the trend, and has embraced new sounds since. The France-born, Germany-residing DJ/producer still brings a snarling energy to her set, but now it's highly tempered with techno. And where electroclash sets were heavily vocal, these days, Miss Kittin aims to create a groove instead, for a more seamless mix that got the vibe straight-up rave-y by the third track.
Throughout, though, she gave a small nod to her usual performances, vocally riffing over tracks, and at one point singing a large chunk of Felix Da Housecat's "We All Wanna Be Prince." Other notable selections included a tech-y, cut-up and flipped rework of "Funkytown" (really).
A good two hours into the night, came a turn towards the vocal finally: New Order's "Blue Monday" played pretty much straight-up, a sped-up version of Simian Mobile Disco's "Cruel Intentions," and a shrill, female-sung electronic version of "Papa Was a Rolling Stone." Eventually, too, came one of her own tracks, her collaboration with the Hacker called "Life on MTV."
It was the king of slow-building slot on the decks that would have been worthy of Winter Music Conference -- or however we should refer to it now. Unfortunately though, it doesn't seem like Miss Kittin is scheduled to play Miami again in March, so if you missed out last night, you may have missed out for 2011.
Personal Bias: Miss Kittin will forever remind me of the Soho Lounge-and-i/o era. And the unfortunate haircuts and makeup of that time period? Guilty as charged, maybe.
The Crowd: Post-goths, grown-up hipsters, eastern European Barbies, dudes dressed like Mystery, a couple souls who unfortunately brought glowsticks, and, for whatever reason, plenty of revelers topping six feet
Overheard in the Crowd: It was so loud, it was impossible to overhear anything -- but for the random anonymous gropers in the crowd, you're totally going to spend your time in hell getting molested all day.
Random Detail: The door guy's chicken costume was a nice touch.