dOP dOPWatergate Vol. 06
The most important and wealthy clubs like to puff up their egos, and for you to take a piece of them home with you. They like to be more than a club, like FC Barcelona. When an club has its own series of CD-mixes, that means that it has reached a certain level of high status and, what the hell, if Fabric and Berghain, to give two examples, do it, then why shouldn’t Berlin’s enormous Watergate discotheque? Having your own line of CD’s gives you a pedigree and earns you international respect. Anyway, I would like to say something that every straight man thinks: the best clubs aren’t those that have their own line of canned sessions, the best clubs are the ones that have the best-looking chicks. Obviously if you have a combination of both things, then you’re a hell of a club, and this is precisely the case of Watergate: it has enormous CD-mixes and some Teutonic beauties with skin and curves that would make Stephen Hawking walk. Bingo!
Into this hormonal-technoid context arrives the sixth work in the series with a proposal that tries to distance itself from the stereotypes, betting on a formula halfway between the album of oddities, a live show, and in your face session. The makers of this danceable monstrosity are the Parisian trio dOP, a force of nature when it comes to groove and house with soul. The group has decided to wrap its present up in all sorts of novel adornments, to show off, and the truth is that the pirouette has turned out well. All of the songs in the set are theirs (there are remixes, their own songs, and cuts in collaboration with other artists), the material is unpublished and exclusively for this CD, and the format seems to remain perfectly afloat between the immediacy of the session and the surgical precision of the live concert. With such striking wrapping paper, one might think that this endogamy would turn out to be annoying and heavy, but it’s not. The brains of dOP manage to get the trip to make sense from beginning to end, and not to become a shower of musical puffing-up and ego tripping just because. The thirteen cuts that make up the set behave as a whole, like a musical fluid that fills your lungs, but lets you breathe, as if you were Abyss’ laboratory rat.
The idea is clear. They want to make us dance, but they don’t want clapping, whistles, naked male torsos or other dirty tricks belonging to more provincial dance music. Their thing is good house aristocracy, so they seek refinement and high class. What they are into is a well-educated dance floor, cultivated, with good manners, beautiful people moving with grace, women with long legs in summery clothing, impossible cocktails on the bar, a terrace next to the Mediterranean Sea (or the River Spree). You can’t reach such ambitious heights with bad, ego-tripping songs. So the beat of the session is house, but a deep, hypnotic house with intravenous sedation–the linking of “Before You Go” and “Carte Blanche,” for example, attest to this, not to mention nods to the purest Detroit sound – “Call the Shots”– and a feline elegance designed to get the girls wet between the legs. The low notes are cavernous, but sweet, pleasant, like a silent vibrator on the clitoris or a perfectly oiled spring.
The good thing is that they never let themselves get carried away by the euphoria. They know how to restrain themselves and keep the bpm’s in line. And this is priceless. They allow themselves the luxury of taking little rests and then going straight for the jugular with shots of deep tantric house, as we see in the brutal break-in of “Glory Hole”, which will give you goose pimples. The cadence is lazy and offers very stimulating passages of real instrumentation, like the marvellous pianos of “Deaf Wagrant”. Here there is quality. Beauty. Submerged in a silky drunkenness, you get to track 13 without realising it, you emerge from the amniotic liquid, and you thank them for a subjugating, stylised, gentle, fresh, creeping set. Bruce Lee said it best: “be Watergate, my friend.” Óscar Broc