By sundown on Thursday I knew exactly where I needed to be. It had already been an unusually long week. The typical monstrosities reared their ugly faces; damp weather, nagging deadlines, and drunk co-workers. It was only fitting I guess, the end of the world was right around the corner and everyone was trying to remain positive; bunch of god damn merrymakers in disguise.
JB and I quietly drove towards Voltage Lounge on North 7th Street. A subtle rain danced on the roof clicking and popping. “So what are we getting into tonight?” asked JB, handing me a large bag of beef jerky. Protein was a staple of Thursday night drinking. “Drum and bass, sexy raver girls, and two for $5 mixed drinks,” I mumbled while carefully chewing. Other than that, all I knew was that a collection of do-gooders put together a special evening. A trio of party hosts, Charlie Carrillo, Brittany Matuszny, and Leah Au Fait had wrangled up a fantastic cause for the holidays: Food Not Bombs, a collection of surplus food for the hungry. I imagined the sheer terror of attacking hunger with cans of creamed corn and green beans. Quickly men! Lock and load! A can is jammed into a mortar then fired it into a starving community. BLAM! THUD! They’re all saved! Spaghetti-O’s for all! It’s a goddamned holiday miracle!
We parked out front and stepped inside. A weary eyed doorman sat next to several large speakers that rattled our chests with fast paced break beats. “Good luck, dude.” JB grinned. The doorman attempted to muster up a smile as I made my way towards the bar. JB was overly excited when I turned around and handed him a 16oz Pabst Tall Boy. “Only three bucks!?” JB smiled. “Things are about to get heavy.”
The building was broken into two parts. Downstairs was a spacious dance floor; the other was an upstairs balcony complete with $10 hookahs, a second bar, and the perfect vantage point to watch the dancers. Clomp, clomp, clomp, clomp. We strolled upstairs and sat down at a table. A dance off was already underway. Mr. Flannel Grunge, a hybrid child of Techno and Nirvana, kick flipped off the ground, leaping, hopping, pulling, twisting, and shifting around the room. A tall competitor emerged from the crowd, rubbing his hands together. He grinned, tapping his foot gently to the beat. “Awwwww HELL! It’s about to go down!” said JB, laughing to himself. It happened in a flash. Kick, punch, chop, block! Duck, jump, turn, pose! I rubbed my eyes in disbelief. “Holy shit. Are those UFO pants?!” JB yelled at me. The intense sound waves had penetrated the time space continuum. 1999 was bleeding back into our reality, reminding me of my own poor decisions involving JNCO pants, plastic bracelets and Adidas visors.
Glow sticks flew in the sky, matching the pace and voracity of the music. Scantily dressed “Electrocute Dancers” from Light It Up Productions paraded around the room. JB’s head darted back and forth as the gorgeous girls moved around the dance floor enticing the room to join in the fun. A pretty, thin brunette clenched a brightly lit hula hoop tight while Santa’s little belly dancer joined the other girls. Men gathered in a circle, mesmerized by the strobing lights and rhythmic bass. “I feel like I’m stuck in some kind of badass video game,” said JB. “I keep expecting Cammy to suddenly battle Eddy Gordo.” I nodded to him, carefully watching the dancers intoxicating moves.
We stood quietly for the most of the night watching as one DJ flawlessly swapped out for another. Each artist brought their own unique talents to the room, bending sight and sound into a single expression. A relentless pulsing beat broke emotion into an open forum of feeling. Girls gyrated viciously through dance and rhythm while men shook and shimmied with the best intentions.
Whether it was good, bad, painful, sexual, scary or indifferent everyone came out to openly express themselves. A strong cause always brings a positive crowd, but everyone here was different. The night itself was a feel good, respectful platform for imaginative form; the love, the music, the mission. No amount of rain or snow could stop that kind of passion.
The bottom line:
This is an awesome community of talent, fun and excitement. Need something different in your life but not ready for that warehouse party in the middle of nowhere? Then you need to check out Sound Krash Thursday. Everyone is friendly, the DJs are very talented, (Check out their work in the links below!) and most importantly, drinks were CHEAP. Two for $5 mixed drinks, $3 dollar beers. You can’t beat that. The next Sound Krash Thursday will be held at Voltage Lounge in January, and is monthly.
Special Thanks to RKF Photography for letting us use their work!
421 N 7th St
Philadelphia, PA 19123
Honorable mentions for sponsoring a great event:
Crash Bang Boom
Light It Up Productions
Food Not Bombs
DJ DIRTY DAN
From Queens, NY, he headlined the Xmas edition of Sound Krash. Dirty Dan is a regular at ‘Burning Man’and ‘WMC’. He is known for genre bending blends, along with his infectious style of mixing, and an arsenal of live effects. His technical skills as a House DJ and the beat juggling/cut styles of a Hip-Hop DJ mesh together to bring a hybrid form of club music for a new generation. Look for his new album out March 2013.
Hailing from Long Beach, New York, Vinyl Fatigue is known for keeping old school
jungle alive and kicking spinning in the style of ‘93-95 jungle. He recently
released on none other than vinyl of course, a remix of Warped Dynamics – Lord of
the Amen on Beat Lab Records out of the UK.
[A crowd favorite of the evening.]
Since the late ’90s he’s been one of Philadelphia’s most skilled and original vinyl scratch DJs. SwingKidd has been infecting the sound waves of the (215) with an impressive display of turntablist techniques. He is also a Producer of Hip-Hop, drum & bass and electronica.
Originally from Queens NYC, and part of the infamous renegadevirus soundsystem
since 2000, Hector Mamjuana has played nationally and internationally to crowds of ragga hungry ears. Originally fusing a sound of breakcore and gabber, he is now using his expertise to put together ecclectic ragga jungle mixes, featuring
original dubplates cut exclusively on acetate records.
[One of our favorites of the evening.]