For those of you who are unfamiliar with Treehouse, here’s the rundown: it’s this tiny little club in Miami Beach that consistently brings the best techno, tech and deep house producers and DJs from around the world. I don’t know how they do it, but they do. Last Friday, Ambivalent and Lee Curtiss played in separate rooms to a crowd of torn techno-lovers. Do I stay with Lee Curtiss and listen to funky house, or do I lose myself in tribal techno with Ambivalent? For me, the answer was simple.
As much as I absolutely adore the Visionquest counterpart, I just couldn’t keep put in Lee Curtiss’ room with the music steadily bumping around 123-124 bpm. At 3am that music wasn’t keeping me alive. So I remained dutiful and raged for hours with Ambivalent. I’d been anticipating this set, but nothing could have prepared me for what I experienced.
The small intimate room was packed with tech-heads. There was no other way to describe the people who were there besides the fact that we are all disciples of techno. And that night, Ambivalent was our savior. His set reminded me of Richie Hawtin, so it was no surprise when I later found out that he got cut his teeth working on production set-up for Plastikman. During his set, he used Traktor (DJ software) and Ableton (music production software) together. He also used this custom module that he uses for controlling drums and effects on the iPad. All of his gear was in play as he launched a continual series of bombastic bass, tribal drums and percussive loops. Later on his Facebook, Ambivalent mirrored the same sentiments we all felt that night, “Miami is always so good for me!! I loved playing last night and kicking off my residency with the Link crew, who feel like family to me. I’ll be back soon!!” And with that information, we were all jumping for joy. Ambivalent will be back soon!
That night, Ambivalent made me realize why I love techno so much. It releases a primal force that unites instinct with intellect. It’s about telling a story in a 3-hour set, not a 3-minute song. You never know what’s coming next, but when that bass drops you can be sure it will unleash your inner beast.