Dirty South came back this past Friday, as if resurrected from the dead. “Darko,” his new album and second release this year, has set him on a path of newness. And with it, we say good-bye to a youthful Dirty South.
As any good artist should have happen, his talent has ripened. There is a subtle, deep, and rich transformation from his earlier works. He still toys with heavy synthesizers and teases with the build, but there is a power that comes out of his newest album release. This power is in the audience’s identification with the music, which somehow reflects the sentiments, feelings, and moods of today. We’re not completely different, just as Dirty South is not completely different – our essence remains intact. However, just like his music, we all have evolved. So his music makes us feel connected, represented, and understood.
Thus, his art is our reaction.
There was a point late in the night, maybe 4am when there wasn’t a phone in sight. It was us dancing with the booth only a foot distance away. There was an energetic pairing between fan and DJ. We felt it, and he felt it too. You can tell by the smiles, the singing along, and movement in unison. It was a beautiful thing. And in acknowledging on the dance floor that a youthful Dirty South no longer exists, I thought I might not hear another “past-life” song, such as “Sweet Disposition,” which he played at Hyde Beach six months ago. And he proved yet again that you cannot predict a Dirty South move.
He played it. And it seems like each time I hear it, it sounds a little different. I think he might still toy with the sounds of the 2010 song…(if I were to interview him, I would ask that question). But all this to say, I started crying! Tears of happiness. A lot of memories – of my first love (not Dirty South), of being really young – and then knowing this is the guy in front of me who created this beautiful-ass song.
It was special. And come to think of it, I don’t think this is the first time I’ve teared-up in one of his sets. Maybe there’s just that one DJ that does it for you. And that’s what I mean by his art is our reaction. Not many artists can bring you to dance like a maniac, cry like a teenager, or smile like it’s Christmas morning.
No doubt his music will be instrumental in shaping music going forward. I hope you all had as good of a time as I did! And spread the news: Dirty South is back!