|Posted: 04 Nov 2007 05:25 Post subject: Time Out Chicago takes time out for DJ Pierre's Afro Acid Pr
Time Out Chicago / Issue 140 : November 1, 2007 - November 7, 2007
DJ Pierre brings his squelchy sound back to town.
By John Dugan
AFRO CHIC Pierre plots a future back in the Midwest.
Photo: Courtesy DJP Musik
A little more than a week ago, DJ Pierre released his new single "Tha Dance!" straight to
Beatport.com. Sparse, futuristic, bubbly electronics with layers of dispassionate voices
uttering phrases like "acid takes control" and "move your body to the beat""it's a
winner in today's everything-old-is-new club environment. Globe-trotting DJs like Josh
Wink have been playing it like mad. Pierre's e-mail blast on the track describes it as
"tech-house," but really, it's an update of the style he authored, acid.
Pierre might not be looking back. "I just want Chicago to get a little more current," he
told us recently. "I'm here to say we were the cutting-edge people, let's embrace the new
sounds." But acid is back in vogue as a pure form of electronic dance that adds some
needed weirdness to a typical minimal or electro set.
Chicago birthed house music, but is also the home of acid, aka acid house. In 1985,
Nathaniel Pierre Jones"as a member of Phuture (with Spanky and Herb J)"recorded "Acid
Trax," a sci-fi chunk of rhythm, using a Roland 303 bass synthesizer. The track was
adopted by Ron Hardy, arguably Chicago's greatest DJ talent ever, and generated a buzz in
Chicago clubs before it was even released. The sonically spacious but infectious "Acid
Trax" eventually spawned an entire dance and drug craze in the U.K.: acid house.
Pierre produced loads of music under numerous guises (Phuture Phantasy Club, Pierre's
Pfantasy Club, and Photon Inc.), often for Chicago-based Trax Records. His music lured
more young Chicagoans into the house scene, some as clubbers and a few as DJ-producers. In
1990, as house music dried up in his hometown, he took a leap of faith and relocated to
Jersey City with hopes of proper remuneration for his productions. In the '90s, with acid
house raging overseas, he made a living with deejaying, remix and production work, teaming
with dance label Strictly Rhythm and gigging as in-house remixer for Jive Records. In
Pierre's own lore, he also created another sound, wild pitch, with a 1990 track called
"Generate Power." It was a golden age of collaboration and growth of the dance industry
and a hell of a ride.
After September 11, many of New York's key Pierre-associated dance labels, such as Nervous
Records, closed shop. Pierre made do producing for U.K. labels and even began bringing
Chicago to Gotham. In his last couple of years in New York, he threw Afro Acid parties
featuring Chicago staples like Mark Grant, Harrison Crump, Glenn Underground and Green
Velvet in DJ sets with the theme "Chicago jacks New York." The Afro Acid parties, "uniting
electro, acid, funky house, minimal," have since been thrown in Philadelphia and Miami .
But with family in the Midwest, and his label contacts in Europe, Pierre moved back to
Chicago in early 2007. In the beginning of October, Pierre returned to local clubs with a
DJ set and live Phuture set at Zentra, reprising a format the group pulled out at New
York's Sullivan Room in August.
With numerous acid comps surfacing""Acid Trax" and other experimental house gems are
collected on the 2005 comp Can You Jack? Chicago Acid and Experimental House
1985"95"Pierre is perfectly positioned to capitalize on the acid rebound. This month,
he'll play Tokyo, Kiev, Glasgow and Berlin.
Meanwhile, Pierre, now installed in Tinley Park, is honing his upcoming Afro Acid Project
album, which, incredibly, will be his first proper solo record. He expects it to drop as
early as January and show us that he's grown in unexpected ways. "The lyrics are more
about humanity and different political issues. There's stuff that's important besides just
Manny Cuevas aka DJ M-TRAXXX
Afro Acid Digital
Email: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
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