Bash Compactor: Cradle to the Rave
It was 1 a.m. the night after Christmas, but hood-eyed party promoter Gina Turner gave me a faint smile and said, “It’s still early yet.” In Love, the dark, cavernous Village nightclub, baby-faced producer Adrian Michna was mashing up Santogold with a thumping bass line. But we were far from Brooklyn, and the nondescript jeans and T-shirt crowd stood motionless under the flashing lights. At the bar I found curly haired DJ Lauren Flax chatting with Alexander Technique. He was making fun of the slackjawed audience: “I think this crowd wandered in from MacDougal Street. They get excited when the guy shines the laser.”
The party was starting to pick up at the bar, but it was still hard to get a fix on the divided anti-scene. A retroid from Greenpoint, wearing wire-rim glasses, assured me she was just passing time. “I don’t get down at all,” she tutted. “I like ’60s folk and women yodeling.”
A friend elbowed me lightly in the ribs and nodded in the direction of a guy in baggy pants hitting a small bowl hung around his neck. “I’m a raver—other people wont admit it,” the bearded twenty-something told me. “This isn’t nu-rave, it’s ravers after they have kids and start doing cocaine.”
A drink appeared in my hand and I retreated into a soundproofed, carpeted sexand-drugs playpen with Michna. Girls were packed into the cubbyholes three deep. “I haven’t had sex in one of these yet but there’s a lot of Jersey in the house tonight,” Michna announced. Cigarettes were smoked, and flirting was rampant until my friend sampled my drink and told me it had a weird taste.“Someone gave you that and you’re drinking it?” a tall, pale brunette asked. The two concluded that the drink definitely did not taste right.
Cue tingly hands, psychedelic trails and fuzzy thoughts. It feels like somebody put something… Then, suddenly, the kids piled out of the playpen. “Look at them go, they cut the bass off,” Michna said laughing, “and their E is starting to kick in.”
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