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The Grog Shop
Saturday, Mar 29, 2014 10:30 PM EDT (10:00 PM Doors)
Nightmares On Wax (DJ Set)
Saturday, Mar 29, 2014 10:30 PM EDT
- Sunday, Mar 30, 2014 2:00 AM EDT
Grog Shop, Cleveland Heights, OH
Nightmares on Wax is an institution, albeit a delightfully different one. The man behind the moniker, George Evelyn, just keeps reinventing, not in a wilful Bowie way, but flowing along, going at whatever speed he fancies to wherever his ideas carry him. For the last seven years he’s lived in an Ibizan farmhouse and, while he’s Warp Records’ longest serving artist – “the granddaddy,” as he puts it – he overwhelmingly focuses on his current projects, letting them revitalize his music.
Perhaps best known in Europe for his ground-breaking ‘90s albums ‘Smokers Delight’ and ‘Carboot Soul’ – although in America the cinematic lo-funk of 2006’s ‘In A Space Outta Sound’ is better known – Evelyn’s pride and joy these days is his four year old underground party on the white island. Wax Da Jam at Las Dalias, Ibiza’s oldest nightclub, 50 this summer, has become a go-to haunt for locals, for promoters and insiders, the place where George explains, “Everyone turns up as individuals but everybody leaves as one.” Here he soundtracks a night of groove, experimentation, percussion and improvisation, alongside guests such as DJ Shadow and Roots Manuva. It’s all fun, though, all for kicks. It’s all about ‘Feelin’ Good’, hence the name of his new album.As well as working with Warp, George had his own label for five years, Wax On, but he ceased involvement in 2010 to concentrate on his increasingly popular Wax Da Jam nights, which grew out of his Wax Da Beach parties in San Antonio Bay.
“It’s been pivotal to my music making,” he says, “and also made me think about the new concept of my live show. I’ve done the full band thing and the sound system thing and now I really want to marry the two and to do so with a real live percussive edge.”
With tours coming this Autumn, Europe and the US will be able to see these ideas come to fruition. In the meantime, there are the ten tracks of ‘Feelin’ Good’, the same number as ‘Carboot Soul’, a good omen according to George, a man positively overflowing with good omens.
“The album initially had many possible names,” he ventures, “But I got on the mic at Wax Da Jam and talked about how music shifted the energy to make people feel good. It’s everbody’s sovereign right to feel good, so I want the album to remind people of that, a soundscape to feeling good, that’s my aim.”
Setting his sights high, as ever, with a cheery, unpretentious sincerity, George Evelyn continues to carry the original flame of acid house and late ‘80s Balearica, pushing it alive’n’kicking into 2013. His new album will surprise many, as bubbly, warm and lively a thing as will be heard all year. Nightmares on Wax are back. Then again, like the underground itself, they never really went away.