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The best venues for electronic music events are not the ones used by the popular Boiler Room. This music producer that stands out for the DJ sets it organises around the world generally uses night clubs and basements especially decorated for the occasion. Some of the most emblematic Boiler Room DJ sets are Henrik Schwarz’s in Berlin, Flume’s in London, David August’s in Berlin, Nicolas Jaar’s in New York and Skrillex’ and Disclosure’s in Shangai.
Neither Mixmag has them, even though they have organised very attractive events. Some examples are the sets played by Elkee Kleijn in Los Angeles, by Claptone in London or by Bonobo also in the British capital city.
The most impressive venues for electronic music sets are the ones chosen by the French producer company Cercle. The majority of them are in France, but they have also produced special sets in Tahiti and Spain (in Ibiza, of course). In France, they use castles, palaces, gardens, churches and forts. As you may expect, the greatest tourist attraction of the French capital could not be missed: there is even a set played live from the Eiffel Tower.
Without further ado, let me invite you all to enjoy the top ten DJ sets by Cercle.
10) Kölsch in the Eiffel Tower
The most emblematic icon of the French capital city could not be left out of this ranking. Even though I am not a huge fan of Kölsch, The shots obtained during this filming are not to be missed. Melodic house at sunset (a constant in Cercle), the Seine with its typical bridges and the Champs Elysées. As the night falls down, the lights are turned on and the city shines beautifully for the camera: Paris at its best.
9) Mome in Tahiti
With a more commercial and beachy atmosphere, Mome was responsible for one of the most remote DJ sets. It was filmed in a floating cottage in Tahiti, the biggest island of the French Polynesia, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. The ideal shelter for lovers dressed up in Cercle, and Mome, with DJ mixers and guitars, provided the music for this idyllic context.
8) Satori and the Band from Space in Luovois Fort
Eccentric Satori was also present in Cercle with his band and he played a set very much of his style: a lot of instruments (amongst the strangest in the market), worthy of admiration dance moves and unconventional musical combinations. The energetic Dutch musician, that generally finds inspiration from poetry, from painting and even from food, played in Luovois Fort, located in the shores of the French city of Rochefort.
7) Deborah de Luca in de Chambord Castle
Deborah introduced me to Cercle’s world. She pushed me into this magical world of unbelievable venues. She could be a model, but she is a DJ, and a great one. The Italian was born in Naples made the audience dance for more than one hour at the ace of a minimal-techno that probably loosened some of the bricks of the castle. De Chambord Castle was included in the list of World Heritage Sites in 2000 and is located in the Center-Val de Loire. It was used as a royal residence and as a hunting and partying lodge. Thanks to Deborah de Luca, partying resumed in the castle.
6) Popof in l’Accorhotels Arena Skating Rink
Some more techno but, on this occasion, brought to you by the local DJ and producer Popof. Alexandre Paounov (A.K.A. Popof) started his career two decades ago in France and, nowadays, is one of the most renown DJ’s of the genre. The special thing about this set is that the stage is located in the middle of a skating rink. Of course people fall, of course cameramen bump into people and, of course, Popof makes them dance, even if they are on skates.
5) Pan-Pot in the Museum of Air and Space
Tassilo Ippenberger and Thomas Benedix met in Berlin and the formed the duo Pan-Pot. In this set, recorded in the Museum of Air and Space, amongst spaceships, planes and hangars, they deploy a dark techno that drives the audience crazy. Not even the rain can stop the flow of energy brought about by this Berliner duo.
4) Stavroz in Saint-Eynard Fort
After so much techno, we need a rest before we face the final sprint of this ranking. The Belgian band Stavroz can help us. In this concert in the impressive Saint-Eynard Fort, located just on top of Grenoble, the quartet enlivens the sunset with unique sound combinations. The Belgians mix jazz and rock with electronic sounds, thus achieving a vibe that has them touring the world around. Off to the mountains we go, hand in hand with Stavroz.
3) Black Coffee in Salle Wagram Auditorium
The most renown African DJ and producer was born in Durban (South Africa) and is called Nkosinathi Innocent Maphumulo, A.K.A. Black Coffee. In this DJ set full of house and lights, recorded in Salle Wagram, an auditorium built in 1865, he proves why he was chosen the Revelation DJ of the Year in 2015. Africa is a massive continent and many of us know very little about it. Black Coffee can be, at least, an entrance door.
2) Boris Brejcha in Fontainebleau Palace
Position number two of the ranking is for the German mask man DJ and producer Boris Brejcha. The worldwide greatest exponent of minimal-techno played at Fontainebleau Palace in May, 2018, and he performed one of Cercle’s most iconic DJ sets. Boris overflows energy during the whole set and the audience just cannot stop dancing. You are all invited to the palace, with Brejcha as the deluxe musician.
1) Solomun in the Roman Theatre of Orange
Of course number one is for the king: Mladen Solomun. The native of Tavnik, Bosnia Herzegovina, of 42 years old, played last month in the Roman Theatre of Orange in the best DJ set ever organised by Cercle. Everything was unbeatable: the context, the filming, the crowd and, obviously, the music. Before experiencing Solomun live, it was hard for me to completely understand his musical quest. However, the set that made us dance in Mandarine Park for five hours was the best I have seen live up to the moment. But it was not filmed… And it was not, unfortunately, held in a Roman theatre built in the I C. d.C.. On the contrary, this was filmed. Even Solomun himself thanked everyone for being part of this event… Two hours of an exquisite tech-house, in which Solomun does what only Solomun can do: control people’s brains through music. The king did it again.
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