Live Bloops: Daphni / Session Victim @Stattbad Wedding, Berlin, Germany

What I missed last week, parte deux: During my week without music, both Kidnap Kid and Brandt Brauer Frick played DJ sets I would have attended otherwise. Whom I did not miss was Daphni aka Caribou aka Dan Snaith the weekend before, though I just now come around to write about it. Snaith was supporting Radiohead on that weekend, playing as Caribou in a big open air venue on both days, and put in an appearance as Daphni on Saturday night in the former indoor swimming pool now known as Stattbad Mitte. So thank you Berlin for being as broke as you are, because where people used to swim, they now dance – but while the location is special, now regularly hosting club events, the main room wasn’t designed for that purpose and neither tiled walls nor a floor descending from the non-swimmers to the deep-end are working in its advantage.

I reviewedDaphni’s Jioalong LP on this blog, and back then wrote that it is nothing I would listen to at home, but the simplistic dance tunes would surely be great in a live setting. And now he played just that mix of his very heady minimal sounds, interwoven with groovy samples. But there wasn’t enough bass, or beat shifting, and an utter lack of transitions. Maybe it was the room, or a part of the crowd coming to this event as a Radiohead after-show event, but many seemed to give up on the music and kind of having fun despite it after a while. I left the room only to check back in a few a times, so maybe I missed the really ecstatic parts, but I doubt it. Oh, and I supposedly missed Thom Yorke playing back-to-back with Snaith at the start of the whole thing. Whatever.

But the frustration with the pool area gave me the opportunity to venture into the depth of the building, towards the boiler room. There, between pipes and valves, Session Victim were doing a deep house/disco set that more than made up for any lack of bass or of feeling above. Hauke Freer and Matthias Reiling drew in the crowd, and here was where the party was at, although there seemed to be a shortage of drugs – judging by the times I was asked if I had any. Session Victim are no newcomers to the Berlin scene, and they even had a small “hit” last year, below. They are on their way to play some shows in the US in November, so don’t miss them if you would like to hear some not-so-Berlin sounds from Berlin.


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