Remember when electroclash took over Berlin’s Love Parade…?
Described in some circles as ‘synthcore’ and ‘nu-new wave’ (who comes up with these titles?), the musical genre that came to be known as electroclash arguably reached its zenith in around 2002, with artists such as Fischerspooner, Ladytron, Miss Kittin and The Hacker and Vitalic riding the retro-futurist wave.
For some (not us!), it was a somewhat vacuous genre, guided more by the styles of Paris Fashion Week than by musical nous.
For example, The Observer’s review of a Fischerspooner gig in June 2002 (just around the time the duo infamously signed to Ministry of Sound) contains the following memorable line: “Spooner turns sideways, the lights change and he appears only in silhouette. Cue wind machine, and Spooner’s wig flows magically in mid-air. It looks like an experimental light opera company has descended on south London.”
But as that summer progressed, it was near impossible to visit any self-respecting venue without hearing the latest International Deejay Gigolo cut blasting out from the Funktion-Ones at some stage of the night.
Therefore, it was inevitable that Berlin’s Love Parade of that summer, held on 13 July, would feature some of the biggest names from that nascent movement, with the trance and techno of previous Parades blended with a diverse mix of 80s-influenced electronica.
Here, for example (please excuse the godawful quality!) is Felix da Housecat, whose mix includes his own Silver Screen Shower Scene and Vitalic’s all-time classic La Rock 01…
Gigolo Records boss DJ Hell weight in with a dollop of Mt Sims’ Hate F**k, a dynamite remix of Depeche Mode’s Behind The Wheel, and, as was the custom at the time, The Rapture’s House of Jealous Lovers…
And Miss Kittin revs things up with her own Frank Sinatra, amongst others…
“We’ll always be together… together in electroclash dreams”, to paraphrase The Human League’s Phil Oakey.
[The full 2002 Love Parade video can be found here, kudos to YouTube user SaTin for the uploads. Picture from Wikimedia Commons user Arne Müseler)