Soul Sequence – Just for Fun
Soul Sequence is a new techno event night at the recently re-ignited Fiction Groove Bar on Long Street in Cape Town.
In a way we’re kinda oldschool, in that we believe a party needs more work than just rocking up and playing some tunes…”
Fiction was taken over by new partners earlier this year. These include electro/bass producer Haezer and his manager Dominique Gawlowski and a third partner Rob Mulholland of Door 221. Those who know and love the venue will attest to it being one of the last bastions of an era where underground dance music could be heard. I say underground because much of what got played there back in the day has filtered through to the mainstream in what is loosely termed techno/deep house these days.
Soul Sequence are dedicated to bringing the oldskool elements of ‘music first,’ ‘fun second’ and ‘posing never,’ back to the scene.
But don’t be fooled by terms like ‘oldskool.’ What the producers of Soul Sequence mean when they throw words like these around is that their techno night is more than just ‘rocking up and playing some tunes.’ They put a lot of effort into making the space at Fiction their own for the night and the emphasis is on up-tempo techno that is cutting edge and not heard on too many other dancefloors in Cape Town right now.
The origins of Soul Sequence
Soul Sequence actually originates out of the embers of Koeksister Records who made an indelible imprint on the SA electronic music scene between 2006 and 2009. Techno stalwart Ferdi Kotze (DJ hAaS) approached original Koeksister founder Damien Morrison with the idea of relaunching the brand and this evolved into Soul Sequence. The timing was serendipitous as Fiction was being revamped with the intention of returning the venue to its former glory days and so the die was cast. Their first event was in April and the response confirmed the Soul Sequence partners’ suspicion that a market for upbeat techno (not the ubiquitous minimal, techy deep stuff we hear every day) definitely exists.
… we pushed the music well beyond the norms of a techno party and the crowd responded positively our goal was to see how much we could push it and we discovered towards the end exactly where that line was.”
Interview with Damien Morrison
We chatted to founder and Soul Sequence partner, Damien Morrison, who also DJs under the moniker LifeHack about the state of techno and venues in Cape Town.
At Soul Sequence, we’re all about the more energetic, dancefloor side of Techno…”
Cape Town used to have quite an informed underground scene but nowadays all electronic music is somehow in the mainstream. Do you find that core underground following still exists?[Laughs] nice easy question for starters, I could probably spend days discussing this. I think the underground is generally split between those who can’t wait to see their preference become mainstream and those who tend to move away from something as soon as it does. I think the advent of EDM (which like it or not had its birth deep underground) on the world stage split it up along those lines and moved some with it into the mainstream and drove others further underground, leaving a whole bunch of confused people trying to figure out which way to go.
In the end though, no matter what, there’s always going to be mainstream artists that everybody knows and there’ll always be people who want to dig deeper past all the surface stuff into the world loosely defined as underground. I think it’s during this process of digging that people find like minded individuals, trade ideas, go in search of places where they can hear the music they like, finding new musical experiences, shape them and they shape it, basically becoming an identity.
For me, I think that is the essence of the underground. So yes, for sure there’s still an underground, but I think the underground has changed a lot with the dawn of social media and the increased access to information it offers. It has altered the shape of the underground music scene, making it a lot more fluid with genres falling in and out of it at a much higher rate than in the past and with people having feet in both the underground and mainstream world, sometimes without even knowing it.
The word techno has become a sort of throw-all term for anything from deep house to minimal and everything in between. How do you differentiate yourselves in that respect?
It has, but that’s because Techno underpins most of the modern electronic music genres. I think there’s been a reaction to the commercialisation of EDM and a lot of genres have hit the reset button and gone back to their techno roots. At Soul Sequence, we’re all about the more energetic, dancefloor side of Techno, so I’d say that we pick up where the pervasive minimalist Cape Town sound ends and act as a gateway to the more fullon, full power techno that’s being revived globally.
Fiction was (and still is) a legendary venue for events. Have you been impressed with what the new owners have done with it?
Yes, absolutely, they’ve turned it around nicely in a short space of time. The Fiction management and staff are top class, they have a long term vision for the club that they are very careful about sticking to and it shows. We’ve always loved their multi genre approach to the Long Street club scene and are happy to be part of it.
The name Soul Sequence is a curious one – I’d have thought ‘house night’ when I hear that name. Where do you see the fit with Techno and how did it come about?[Laughs] it’s a couple of things, basically, when we put Koeksister Records to bed and started up Soul Sequence, we wanted to keep a lot of our musical values, personality and our tongue in cheek approach to things intact.
Techno, on the other hand is very clinical and machine based both in production and sound, so we wanted to fuse the Koeksister Soul into a newer, updated machine type sequence, hence the name Soul Sequence.
Also, I guess it’s a bit of a nod to the origins of Techno back in Detroit. There’s an incredible documentary called “High Tech Soul” which explores this and I highly recommend it to anybody who’s interested in electronic music in general.
Name of a few artists we can listen to on Soundcloud that would typically be played at a Soul Sequence event…
Shew we cover a lot of ground in one night, so here’s a rough cross section I guess…
Ian Pooley, Toms Due, Matador, Royal Wolf, Anna, Embassy, Sebastian Groth, Joseph Mara, Elliot, Stranger, Housemeister, Chicago Loop, Perc, The Advent & Industrialyser, Turbo Turbo to name a few.
Cape Town seems to love outdoor parties of all genres nowadays; how does one lure people back to the clubs when it seems the kids just want to be outdoors these days?
Good question, I love being outdoors too, I love the fact that festivals have expanded to cover multiple genres in Cape Town. I think there’s a place and time for both. It’s something we’d like to do in the future, have our regular nights at Fiction and maybe once or twice a year do something bigger outdoors.
Soul Sequence at Fiction on Friday 28 October
The next Soul Sequence event takes place at the end of this month. We’re definitely going to be checking it out.
- 22:00 – 23:30 hAaS
- 23:30 – 01:00 DeFuse
- 01:00 – 02:30 Embassy
- 02:30 – 04:00 LifeHack
- R30 before 23:00
- R50 after 23:00
Visuals by Pupil Visuals
CONNECT WITH SOUL SEQUENCE
Here are two mixes from the Soul Sequence crew to wet your earbuds…