XXXChange (L), Soviet Panda (R)
One of the coolest things I've seen at a local dance night happened last September at Too Much Love when LCD Soundsystem kicked off the school year. One minute First Avenue's mainroom seemed vast, dotted with just a few uncommitted stragglers lurking from the concert beforehand -- and the next minute, a jolting scene for any jaded ol' SNDP purist: looking down from the balcony, neon lights scurried across a fluorescent mass of heads filling every nook and cranny, the kids dressed like they were chasing that superfine line between "Whatever, I'm effortlessly stylish" and "LOOK AT ME LOOK AT ME LOOK AT MEEEE!" It didn't take long to discern that this was indeed the future of the Minneapolis party scene, and at least for the Twin Cities, this inclusive melting pot of students, newcomers and misfit club scene vets embracing sound palettes of all types was weirdly new.
Months later, there's signs of this "new" Minneapolis all around us, and at the forefront of the electronic sect is a very visible crew of DJs including TML's own Soviet Panda (a.k.a. Peter Lansky), the promoter/founder/DJ who's bringing highly sought Spankrock producer XXXChange to his party's 2nd birthday on Saturday. Burrowing out of the Baltimore club scene and popping off as a duo in New York, Spankrock revived dance music from its nearing-comotose state, pouring skanky rhymes (rapped by counterpart Naeem Juwan) over buoyant, booty-focused beats that, thanks to XXXChange, makes sultry bedfellows of both hip-hop and electro (much like ghetto house but fuller and more satisfying). There've been many mimics (hi Mickey Avalon!), but there's still only two dudes to thank for this attitude-packed sound, and we're lucky to have one of them coming to our city.