It’s been almost a two decades since Simon Dunmore conceptualised the Defected brand, and during this time it has dominated the dance music industry. Leading the way with its innovative vision and emphasis on providing quality clubbing experiences, it has promoted equality and freedom, uniting a global audience through a shared love of house music.
As the scene has moved forward into modern times, so has the record label, with the development of event concept Glitterbox and maintaining residencies in Ibiza, not to mention regular radio shows hosted by the finest artists of the genre, and its very own festival in the secluded Garden Resort in Croatia.
With a very busy season ahead of them, Defected came to Bristol to warm up for the summer, setting up home at one of the countries’ best clubbing venues, Motion.
Upon entering the warehouse, transformed from a skate park into a raver’s paradise, we were welcomed by the upbeat, funky house sounds of Low Steppa entertaining a packed out main room and energising the audience with contemporary fusions of timeless house hits that exude nostalgia. Dropping classics like Rhythim is Rhythim’s ‘Strings of Life’ and Daft Punk’s ‘Around the World’ that highlighted house music’s iconic and eclectic heritage.
Later on, special guest Claptone donned his signature gold mask and top hat and launched in to a 90 minute musical journey that soared through the vast elements of house and techno. The set was built around uplifting melodic breaks that enticed arms to soar through the smoke and lasers, into pulsating bass riffs accompanied by subtle synth patterns that moved through a variety of genres.
From the distorted elements of techno to piano hooks synonymous with the acid house era, finishing with a seamless transition between Candi Staton’s ‘You’ve Got the Love’ and his huge hit ‘No Eyes’ as the crowd graciously thank him for his outstanding performance with enthusiastic cheers.
French producers Amine Edge & Dance have made their mark in recent years with their innovative ideas and versatility across dance music genres, and their performance lived up to the hype that surrounds them. The set takes a turn to the darker sounds of house as they experimented with gritty synths and deep bass sounds that captivated the audience as they hung to each rhythmic beat, distracted only by explosions of confetti and co2 cannons that flooded the main arena.
Closing Motion down for the evening was one of Defected’s finest, Sam Divine who returned to her home town where her talent was first discovered to put an end to the winter blues and bring our hearts into the summer with Balearic beats, soulful house riffs and good vibes that end the night on a euphoric high, with fans leaving the venue revitalised and excited for the musical season to come.
It is no secret that Defected are the front-runners when it comes to all things house music, and this night only further proved this. Their dedication to creating musical experiences that are solely based on the quality of the music and what it represents is why so many people return year on year to their shows, infected by the electric atmosphere they so cleverly create.
This night only provided a teaser of what to expect from their upcoming events, and it certainly left us wanting more.