Over on the sunny shores of Ibiza, clubs and promoters are facing one of the biggest changes since ravers first descended on the island in the '80s. Grime and hip-hop are becoming huge draws (see: #MERKY Festival for starters), and many visitors to the island are coming solely to hear their favourite MCs rather than DJs. Not surprisingly, many promoters and clubs are wondering how to react. For Together — who host regular parties at club Amnesia — they find themselves in a really fortunate position. Their bass-heavy brand of dance music need not adjust itself for the grime and rap heads since the two sounds already complement each other nicely: beats and bars for the warm-up and then pure 4x4 madness to take you through to the morning, all held together by a common appreciation of big, fat basslines.
The Together parties have been going for five years now and already feels like a 'beefa institution. Their penchant for dance music with heavy basslines has kept them at the forefront of this ever-evolving scene. With that template in place, their guests and resident DJs, such as bass princess Hannah Wants and D&B behemoth Wilkinson, are able to draw on sounds old and new, always adapting whilst keeping that common thread in place. Complex sat down with Together promoter Robert Yilmaz to discuss sticking to your guns whilst embracing the now.
How long have you been in the promoting business for?
We've been running Together parties in London for over twenty years now. In Ibiza, this is our seventh year and we have also been doing some parties in Barcelona recently at Pacha, as well as hosting festival stages like at South West Four in August.
What is that made you want to work in this stressful part of the music biz?
For the love of the music and being able to throw great parties. There's nothing better than seeing thousands of people having the time of their life and feeling like you are contributing positively to those people' lives at that moment.
Do you feel like you've made a big enough dent in the D&B and house scenes?
I think we're making great strides in Ibiza especially. When we first started hosting events on the island, drum and bass wasn't showcased regularly at any of the island's leading clubs so we feel like we've made a lot of headway on that front. Every week, we have the biggest names in D&B in the main room from Chase & Status, Rudimental, Sigma, Andy C, Wilkinson, Sub Focus and more and it goes off in a massive way! There's definitely an appetite for it. The Terrace provides a more house music-led alternative, with our residents Gorgon City, MK, Duke Dumont, Hannah Wants, Disciples and Claptone all pulling in the crowds. Every Tuesday, we try to give people a festival atmosphere where they can go from one room to another and listen to completely different styles of music.
Grime and hip-hop seems to be taking over the island day by day—what are your honest thoughts on that?
With there being a lot of people on the island from the UK, there's always going to be that need for an event that is providing something a bit different from the usual house and techno recipe, and we plan to be the night that caters for that.
Name five tracks that sum up the Together experience and the reasons for choosing them:
1. Chase & Status, "Blind Faith". Our residents C&S have been with us since day one, and it always goes off in the main room when they play this and they always do. This is definitely one of those tracks that reminds us of the raw energy that builds up in that room.
2. Gorgon City f/ Elderbrook, "Smile (Terrace Dub)". This one is a re-work of a big Gorgon City track. The Terrace Dub epitomises the vibe that we try to create on the Terrace, featuring a great bassline coupled with some catchy vocals that you can't help but dance to! The Gorgon boys also look to create 'terrace' dubs of their big hits which always goes down a treat on the dancefloor.
3. Rudimental, "Powerless (MK Remix)". Undoubtedly one of the kings of Ibiza, MK never fails to play this one and it's the perfect summer tune—a feel-good house track that reminds us of sunshine and happiness.
4. La Roux, "In For The Kill (Hannah Wants Bootleg)". Hannah Wants has been a resident for us for five years now, and three years on the Terrace. We have very fond memories of her playing this track to thousands of people on the Terrace coming to a standstill. A goosebumps moment for sure.
5. Wilkinson, "Sweet Lies". This is another main room fave, with the sweet vocals and a D&B beat that gives the whole club goosebumps. The music video was also actually filmed in Ibiza, so that explains the vibe of this track.
What's next for Together?
We're constantly growing in strength in Ibiza, and our London residency at Ministry of Sound and 02 Academy Brixton. We want to take the brand to festival stages and other clubs across Europe and around the world one day. Together is only getting bigger year by year, so watch this space!
Together runs every Tuesday night at Amnesia in Ibiza.