Initially, I was intrigued by the Joris Voorn booking at Coda back in February, but having already committed to other events, opted not to go. That lasted until I heard some of his recent sets, where I was completely blown away by the diversity of his sound and the groove that persisted throughout. Hearing his new music completely changed my mind giving me no choice but to attend.
Arriving at Coda shortly after midnight, the club was already full, with a queue 30 people deep outside on the street. Daniel Dubb was on the decks, playing an opening set that was heavy and fast, but had the room buzzing early. It did make me curious how the headliner would transition, given that his sets normally have a more melodic and funky buildup within the first hour or two.
At 1 a.m. my question was answered, and Voorn took to the decks with an opening hour harder than I was accustomed to him playing, but very appropriate for the Coda crowd. As his set went on, it was almost as if the DJ would move from chapter to chapter, sampling different styles of music at each stage. Ranging from heavy techno, to progressive trance, even sampling in soulful disco-house and the occasional hip hop vocal, there was no end to the diverse nature of his sound.
Heading into the evening, I heard that Voorn was booked to play from 1 – 3 a.m., so as his set neared the two-hour point I was focused intently on enjoying every tune the artist played. Yet when 3 a.m. came, there was no end in sight, and he continued playing. Time and time again he would lower the music ever so slightly, giving the illusion that he may be finishing, before once again slamming down thundering bouncy bass lines that had members of the crowd arguing over how “dirty” the tunes were.
It was not until 5 a.m. when he finally played his last song. The club was still largely full of music fans who knew they had seen and heard something unique, and those left in attendance showed their appreciation with whistling and applause. While Voorn was certainly the highlight, Simon Jain deserved mention as well, for being willing to let the headliner play through his timeslot, knowing that the crowd was loving every tune.
The set and evening were one of my favourites in recent memory. In the span of just a few weeks Voorn has catapulted from someone on the periphery of my attention, to someone I’ll follow adamantly and will not be missing the next time he is in Toronto.
See the full photo album here.