Despite being located in the industrial wasteland we like to call Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Glasslands has become an indie dance haven. And last week, the Jet Jam tour last week brought out a room of Anglophiles en masse.
Jet Jam parties are international affairs curated by UK producer Darren Williams (aka Star Slinger) with visuals contributed by Slovenian artists Michaela Selmani and Anže Sekelj. It's a distinct vision with a focus on future-bass that sports omnipresent vocals and a decidedly R&B aesthetic.
I caught both Bondax and Star Slinger and was completely enamored with the proliferation of vocal-house in both sets. It all reminded me that dancefloors can totally be churches.
Bondax, a teenage duo from Lancaster, are redeeming members of the baby-faced Millennials. George Townsend (age 17) and Adam Kaye (age 18) appear on stage fitted like prom rejects rather than soon-come international dance stars, but the music certainly holds up. Their near-throwback garage vocal tracks are thoroughly produced and then mixed with more urgency than most environments can handle, and the sweet pop-ready builds and breakdowns keep you waiting for what's next.
When Star Slinger mixed onstage, he truly commanded the room. The set was big, bringing his hip-hop aesthetic to an all-house set that, in combination with his recent EP Ladies In The Back, is a true testament that R&B wins over EDM any day. I could make many-a-comment here about the appropriation of R&B by pale-faced white dudes, but from cutting his chops retrofitting jams from Drake and the set he threw down, Slinger is undoubtedly next level.
Best Tweet about the show: @halcyonhabit
Bullshitting with Star Slinger before he goes on at @Grasslands in Williamsburg, BK
(Obviously for the "Grasslands" reference… Which, what? When's that place opening?)