Bringing the old Ibiza flame back to Monday nights, we visited Amnesia for the grand opening of Pyramid.
Intent on providing an authentic clubbing experience, Pyramid is everything the original Ibiza embodies. An island once defined by a constant thirst for hedonism and escapism, Amnesia’s in-house spectacular strips it right back to the old school, a far cry away from today’s more commercialised Ibiza nightlife landscape of today.
Placed with the difficult task of filling the void left by Cocoon last season, Pyramid hit the ground running in 2018. A successful debut summer on the White Isle saw the new concept host several memorable performances from a wealth of techno heavyweights including Maceo Plex, Luciano, Raresh, Ben Klock and many more.
Now sharing alternative Mondays with Cocoon at the San Rafael clubbing mecca, the 2019 Pyramid opening set the tone for the summer with some extra special production value suiting the night’s organic ethos.
Blending together cutting-edge technology and lighting, the skeleton of a tipi entangled by two stargazing dancers took centre focus in the more extensive Terrace with a soundtrack of deeper, dubbier strains of groove-driven minimal. Elsewhere, in the more intimate settings of the Club Room, a darker, more uncompromising encore of techno was on display.
Here are five essential performances from Pyramid’s opening ceremony.
Often under-appreciated, but unquestionably the most important task of a party, especially for an opening, is that of the warm-up set. Over in the Main Room, this unenviable feat fell to the hands of Amnesia resident, Luca Donzelli. Distinctive in narration, a driving passion and refined style saw Luca open up proceedings wonderfully. His inclusion of Autotunes’ ‘Stripes and Strings’ was a highlight with a synth honing in on that old-school feeling whilst a pumping groove maintained the high energy within the room.
Following on from Luca was Hamburg assassin, Helena Hauff. Awarded the best BBC Essential Mix of 2017, her performance at Pyramid’s opening proved testament to this. Despite having quite a laidback approach, her obsession to detail and a relentless work ethic tells a very different story. In what can only be described as a deft ability to locate harmonic charm buried within a wealth of thunderous chaos, Helena was truly in her element. Forging together acidic and industrial techno with gnashing electro, such explosiveness illustrated a set largely devoid of content yet driven by feeling.
The Terrace was a much more groove-driven affair. Leading German export, tINI, was dictating dance floor movements from 2-4am effortlessly leading the crowd into her world of minimal romance. Beginning hard and groovy whilst retaining a strong sense of control, tINI’s insertion of Sonate’s 2013 Nell Records number, ‘Living On A Star’, portrayed her fondness for percussive techno with a punchy drum bass and sublime vocal shots for extra dark measure. Further fast-paced percussive cuts ensued, a great insight for what to expect from her residency at Ibiza Underground later this summer.
Considered an Amnesia favourite, whenever Ricardo Villalobos shows up in the Terrace, you should always expect the unexpected. Supplying an unrivalled blend of music and disconnection, Ricardo’s appearance at Pyramid’s opening was very special indeed. Inducing revellers with a fusion of acidic minimal house and techno, his experimental taste paired with his unique charisma made for the night’s most intriguing performance. At one point, 100Hz’s ‘The Harlot’ evoked an outburst in fast-paced, passionate fist-pumps and hip-swings, we give kudos once again to RV.
Closing operations in the Club Room, Nina Kraviz’s no-holds barred music policy was one to stand up and take note of. Sharp-eyed and laser-focused, the Siberian tastemaker was unforgiving in her selection and transitions. Delivering an emotionally-charged blend of techno, ambient and psy-trance, her range of sounds were both astounding and retained an unmistakable Kraviz twist.