“At the end, you probably don’t hear anything, everything just goes black.”
This famous (albeit misquoted) line from one of the closing episodes of The Sopranos, kind of sums up how I felt when I read earlier today that Sven Väth, after some 19 years of Cocoon at Amnesia, is taking his legendary night six kilometres down the road to Ibiza town, and Pacha.
Announcing the news on Twitter, Papa Sven described the announcement a an indication of how ‘Ibiza will never stop changing, and nor will Cocoon’, and highlighted his excitement at this new “collision of visions”.
But other than the natty new branding – who knew the Pacha cherries would work so well as part of the Cocoon logo? – to me this is another regressive step in the history of clubbing on the White Isle.
It also means no more nights like this (one of the most ‘Sven’ Sven moments on the internet; I’m watching this as I type, with tears in my eyes)…
Ok, I should preface this by saying I haven’t been to Ibiza since 2009 (I am planning on returning this year!) but during the first decade of the millennium, I was there nine times. Approximately three months, if you add up the weeks and fortnights.
And over that time, you start to get to know the place, and particularly the places you like and don’t like.
Pacha, for me, was in the latter category.
Yes, it’s one of the most beautiful clubs in the world (if not the most beautiful), but from my experience, the crowd was just… how shall I put this…. disinterested. Perhaps that pixie dust they picked up on their trawl through Ibiza Town’s super-expensive bars wasn’t working. Or perhaps they were just wankers.
One thing that always got me was the fact that Pacha served water in little glass bottles rather than plastic ones; aka less product for the same price (€10 the last time I checked, this might have gone up).
Amnesia, of course, was always expensive too, but it was a different vibe… you felt the crowd were there for the music, not to be ‘seen’, or ‘seen with…’.
Hell, the first time I was there, it was for a Dance Valley night, with Michel de Hey lashing out quality acid techno… the ‘dahlings’ of Pacha wouldn’t know what hit them.
And THAT sound system! Whoomph.
When Sven brought Cocoon to Ibiza in 2000, it was the perfect fit; two rooms of craziness, thousands of mentallers on the same vibe as the DJ, and a cold air cannon to bring everyone back to reality (or send them to the stratosphere) when things got too heated.
Each year, Sven and the crew would adopt a new ‘theme’, generally accompanied by promotional photos of each of them looking faintly ridiculous, but in keeping with the hedonism of the location. Case in point – just LOOK at the head on Richie Hawtin in the promotional shots for the 2006 season, dubbed ‘Wild Life 2’.
Will we get the same craziness in Pacha? I doubt it.
In Ibiza, as with everywhere else in the world, it’s the crowd that makes the party, and while Cocoon in Amnesia was, for a time, the wildest party going, I fear that Pacha may bring this wonderful, demented merry go round to a shuddering halt…
But I guess we won’t know until the doors open. Prove me wrong Sven!
(PS: While I’m not a fan of Pacha, I have no doubt that it will not sink as low as Hï Ibiza, the club fondly remembered as Space, which has taken to booking Martin Garrix as a resident. There’s no making a silk purse out of THAT sow’s ear…)
[Kudos to TopDJMag TV for the YouTube upload]