Richie Hawtin jumpstarts weekend of electronic music

Story as originally posted at The Detroit News –

Foreshadowing the Movement 2003: Detroit’s Electronic Music Festival in Hart Plaza this weekend, electronic music artist Richie Hawtin plans to play tonight at Ann Arbor’s Necto nightclub.

The club can hold 400 people, which is far less than the number of people who want to see him.

“We are looking forward to opening the festival … at a club with a different atmosphere,” Hawtin says.

During last year’s Detroit Electronic Music Festival, Hawtin threw an afterparty, called Control, at City Club in Detroit. At sunrise the next day, people were still waiting at the door to get into the roughly 800-person venue.

Hawtin, who was raised in Windsor and is founder of Windsor-based recording labels Plus 8 and Minus Inc., has been releasing albums since the early 1990s and throwing sought-after parties in Detroit for nearly as long. His reputation stems from innovative production techniques and control over sounds generated on drum machines, synthesizers and other gadgetry.

He has recorded under other names, most famously as Plastikman, as well. By fusing the upbeat acid-house sounds of Chicago and Europe with darker Detroit sounds, the Plastikman sound in the mid-1990s became internationally recognized for its transformation of acid style into austere, bass-kicking landscapes.

The artist has revised his live-show equipment from the combination of turntables, effects processors and a Roland TR-909 drum machine that he has used in recent years to using a customized DJ mixer that his father helped design, says Clark Warner, label manager at Minus.

And Hawtin is planning to release a new Plastikman record in October, the first release under that moniker in several years.

DJ Magda and Minus’ Clark Warner are also scheduled to perform. Unlike Hawtin’s parties in Detroit, the party will start at 8 p.m. and close at 2 a.m. to accommodate Hawtin’s hours-long DJ sets.

People who bought tickets for Hawtin’s party in November can use their ticket stubs for a $5 discount off the $20 Necto ticket price.

“We’re used to these kinds of shows. For Paul van Dyk, we turned away about 600 people,” says Bryan Mellberg, managing partner at Necto. “Electronic music fans are polite and well-behaved.”