Friday Night: Justin Martin at White Room

Categories: Concert Review
justinmartin.jpg
Justin Martin
Friday, January 23, 2009
White Room, Miami


Better than: Anything I have heard live in quite a while.

Given the inordinately low temperatures in Miami last week, Friday turned out to be a fairly adequate night for clubbing alfresco in the White Room patio. By 11 p.m. you could hear the deep pulsating bass emerging from behind the walls of this tiny building and floating down North Miami Ave., slowly luring early comers inside.

First on the decks was PL0T resident DJ Mansur, a mainstay of the techno parties that rocked Friday nights at this venue all through 2008. White Room's vacant patio gradually filled up while he spun a soulful mix of stripped-down techy deep house, inciting the first bodies to stir across the empty dancefloor. DJ Strickly B took over sometime after midnight, blending in his own selection of phenomenally funky bass-driven tech house, as the dancing quotient gained momentum.

The patio was already packed and the crowd considerably energized by the time Justin Martin came on and kicked the tempo up quite a few massive notches. Knowing his music from MySpace, MP3s, and flimsy household stereo speakers, nothing could have prepared me for the brutal and mind-bending sonic assault of his live performance.

At first I didn't even notice he had insidiously taken over the decks, but I was involuntarily tuned in as a monstrously intense rattling bass frequency overcame the club's especially pristine Dynacord Cobra sound system. I had never heard anything like this before in my life. I must have stood there motionless in stunned jaw-dropping awe for the first half hour of this performance.

There is no denying the sheer manic fervor among his entire White Room audience as Mr. Martin delivered a ground-shaking techno set that virtually stampeded through every frequency in the sound spectrum and every stylistic flair known in EDM. From the hypnotic squelches of acid house and flamboyant synth stabs of electro-funk, to the lowdown gut-throbbing basslines of dubstep. An inspiring and stellar performance by all accounts, and the crowd's clamor continued well into early Saturday morning.

Critic's Notebook

Personal Bias: I was genuinely blown away by the quality of music that night, and that does not happen nearly often enough.

Random Detail: It seems like practically every other person I met and chatted with among the crowd that night was a DJ or EDM producer, in addition to a hardcore Martin fanatic. Justin Martin is obviously a DJ's DJ and White Room Fridays home to clubbers in the know.

By the Way: Justin Martin will be headlining the unmissable Dirtybird and Mothership WMC 2009 party along with Claude VonStroke and a truly spectacular international lineup

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