Moby DJing

Whether it be for inspiration, playfulness, or living the life, Moby returned to clubs last year as a DJ. He's always been close to the dance scene. In fact, in his earlier years, didn't he frequently DJ? Wikipedia doesn't seem to think so, but I thought I heard something about that.

My fandom for Moby doesn't go way back to his beginning. I started paying attention to his music when some of his tracks started showing up in compilations. In 1999, he released Play which I liked. I fell in love with 18 in 2002. That Summer in 2002 was the first time I had a chance to see Moby live, but I blew it because I thought $50 was too expensive for tickets. It's still somewhat expensive, but Paul Oakenfold was there too. (Edit: Actually it was Summer 2001 for the Area One Tour)

I've been a fan every since. I loved Hotel. I listened to it everyday throughout the summer of 2005. Up until that point, I had seen all my favorite musicians and groups live, but Moby was ever elusive. He'd either not tour in the Midwest, or I'd hear about it after the fact.

To this day, Moby is still my favorite musician who I've not seen live.


But anyways, back to the point. In 2008, Moby released an album entitled Last Night. It was a correspondence to all his memories DJing the previous several months. It was a very chill but upbeat album. It was great to flip on and lounge to. ^_^

So when he started touring a little more extensively as a DJ last year, I really wondered what his live sets would actually sound like. On August 2nd, 2008, I had my chance. It was my chance to not only see Moby live for the first time, but to listen to him DJ! I was pretty excited.

However, those plans were dashed by a prior engagement (literally). It was the same date as my good friend Erika's wedding, of which I was part of. Even though Moby was a mere 2 hours away in downtown Chicago, it was not my fate. That night, I did not belong in Moby's audience.

Wait for Me

A couple of weeks ago, Moby released his newest album, Wait for me. Unfortunately, I don't really like it. Play, 18, Hotel, Last Night all had a playful inspired energy. Wait for me is a pretty depressive anti-war album that really doesn't appeal to me.

But, with Wait for Me, Moby is back into song writing and playing music rather than DJing. He's become pretty political over the past year which has taken him out of the clubs and into the studio. So, my chance to see him DJ has passed for now.

That is... until yesterday.

Essential Mix

Thank god for Radio 1 and Pete Tong. During the Ultra Music Festival last year, they recorded Moby's set on stage with Carl Cox. After coming across a torrent from this set, I quickly downloaded it and had the pleasure of listening to it today on the bus!

Moby's Essential Mix set is pretty interesting. It's incredibly high energy. I knew that there was no way he'd play anything but House music, but I thought it would be a little more progressive and ambient given his album background. If you had me listen to this set and afterward told me this was Moby, I would be shocked.

But there could be two major factors in play here.

1) This is the Ultra Music Festival. DJs don't fuck around when it comes to Miami in Spring. They bring their A game to the table, and cater to the 10,000 music lovers hopping around in the tent. The music feeds off the crowd just as the crowd feeds off the music. It's wildly intense, so it stands to reason that if he were playing House music, it would be incredibly energetic.

2) He's playing on stage with Carl Cox. Carl Cox is known for incredibly energetic sets. With Moby's set leading into Carl Cox, Moby has to bring the energy up to the level of Carl Cox. So there's a little of that too.

I was super happy that the 3 or 4 ending tracks were all remixes of previous Moby songs. ^_^

A True Moby set?

But, I have to ask myself, "Is this a true Moby set? When Moby DJs, is this really his sound?" I'm not entirely convinced. Again, it would've been nice to see him in Chicago last year to have some context, but that's not fair to Erika to complain about it.

The DVD packaged with 18: The B-sides, has Moby's entire live performance at Glastonbury 2003. This performance is exactly what I would picture Moby live. It's a pretty mellow and vibrant performance. This is the kind of rich ambient energy I was expecting from his DJ set. It's really weird...


The day has finally come!! These past ten years of listening to Moby, striving to hear him live, will finally come to light. On September 30th, Moby will be touring through Chicago for "Wait for Me" which is pretty awesome.

But! He'll be @ Myth, Minneapolis the day after on Thursday October 1st. I think it's finally time to scratch off one of my life goals. And it probably won't be anything like how I expect it to be. ^_^

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