Derrick May & Kevin Saunderson

Selected by
Don Crispy

Xavier Morel: Trance a la France

Fully soundproofed and boasting a powerful lineup of DJs in the coming weeks, Shibuya' Womb is finally on track to assume its rightful place among Tokyo's top dance clubs. An upcoming event on June 15 - Birthday - sees world-leading DJs and techno innovators Derrick May and Kevin Saunderson join forces for a four-turntable face-off, the first of its kind in Asia.

While Derrick May is a frequent visitor to Japan, the upcoming visit will mark his first to Womb. As a member, along with Juan Atkins and Derrick Saunderson, of pivotal of early Detroit techno producers Deep Space Soundworks, May has been synonymous with techno since the early '80s.

Mating the warm strings of the emerging house sound with the harder, percussive edge of Detroit techno, May was responsible for essential early techno tracks such as "Strings of Life," which he released from his Transmat label.

With the explosion of house and rave in the '90s, May has been accorded demigod status, DJing worldwide (including occasional sets at Liquid Room and most recently, Luners) and releasing mix compilations for Sony, among others.

Derrick May: Detroit's finest

Along with May and Atkins another member of the trio also termed the Belleville Three, Kevin Saunderson met up with the pair while attending Belleville Junior High in Detroit. Influenced equally by the funk of Parliament/Funkadelic and the synth-pop of Kraftwerk, Saunderson formed his own KMS records in 1986 and began releasing singles such as "Bounce Your Body to the Box," which soon became an underground hit, influencing the burgeoning acid house scene in Britain.

Forming the group Inner City with vocalist Paris Grey, Saunderson began production work in Britain, where the rave scene was providing a growing amount of employment. Inner City achieved Top Ten hits in England with "Big Fun" and "Good Life."

In the '90s, Saunderson has continued to release more pop-oriented work with Inner City, as well as harder sounds under monikers such as Reese, Tronik House and E-Dancer. He has also recently released LPs as part of Studio!K7's X-Mix series, including 1998s X-Mix: Transmission from Deep Space Radio, as well as DJing the world over...

Meawhile, Movements of Electronic Body Music, an event this coming Friday, June 8 marks Womb's first big trance session, with French DJ Xavier Morel topping up a lineup that also includes Equinox DJs Masa, Kotaro and a live set from Spiritjack.

Hailing from Paris, Morel has been a major name as a DJ and creator on the trance scene since the early '90s, getting his first big break as a collaborator with Juno Reactor on the superb Bible of Dreams album. Also working as an A&R man for key trance imprint Blue Room Released in the mid-'90s, Morel recently launched his own label, Atomic Reactor, with releases from emerging acts Male or Female, Spectral and Generic Funk to name a few. In Japan, Morel has been closely allied with Equinox, contributing his uplifting blend of trance to many an Equinox party over the past few years.

Movements of Electronic Body Music: Womb, 6/8, 9pm, JY4000, w/1d. Tel: 5459-3939.

Birthday: Womb, 6/15, 11pm, JY4000, w/1d. Tel: 5459-3939.

Ralph Lawson
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396: Ralph Lawson
395: Ed real
394: Swedishnight@code
393: 4 heroes meets 2000 black
385: Sonicmania
384: Hotaka Mountain Festival
383: Shur-I-Kan
382: Richie Hawtin
381: Deep Dish
380: Professor T
379: Roy Davis Jr
378: Flaura & Flynn
377: Vitamin D
376: Dmitri From Paris
375: Derrick May & Kevin Saunderson
374: Deep Banana Blackout
373: Sunpower
372: Rei Harakami
371: Christian Smith
370: DJ Hasebe
369: Reboing
368: Poptones
367: Jamyz Nylon
366: Yoji Biomehanika
365: Big Chill
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362: The Room 8th Anniversary
361: Madame Friction
360: LTJ Bukem
359: Medeski, Martin & Wood
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356: Matthew Herbert
355: Juno Reactor
354: Gilles Peterson
352/3: New Millennium Countdown
351: Captain Funk
350: Francois K.
349: Seven
348: Gratia AIDS Charity Party
347: Epic Wave & Protocol
346: Double A & Twist
345: Electraglide
344: Seb Fontaine
343: Freaky Flow & MC Flipside
342: The Word Is Sex
341: Isotope 217
340: Fabio
339: The Pink Cow
338: Nigel Dawson
337: Thunderpuss
336: Digital Experience #2
335: Wire 00
334: Org
333: Metamorphose
332: Bamboleo
331: Kingyo Club
330: Big House II
329: Alan Thompson Japan Tour
328: Doc Scott
327: Susumu Yokota & Max Brennan
326: Rob Gee
325: Skam
324: Karafuto
323: LTJ Bukem
322: Sven Vath
321: Alton Miller
320: Jazz Electronica
319: Smith & Mighty
318: Goldie
317: Nukleuz Tokyo Tour
316: Tribute To The Love Generation
315: Alex Lauterstein
314: Archive Records Japan Tour 2000
313: Champs
312: Haru 2000 Matsuri
311: David Morales
310: Tsuyoshi
309: Vision Quest