On the subject of All-Hallows' Eve, it seems there's a decided lack of parties around the end of this month. With the demise of Dean Major's System goes the "System 666" party, while Analogue Systems' Gabe, initially rumored to be picking up the slack, is instead concentrating on his New Year's Eve all-electro party. The night before, Devil's/Angel's Night, has "Trick" from Detor at Motor (313-369-0080), while Three Floors of Fun has Chicago great DJ Funk live on his Roland 505 Groovebox. The Step crew, which has been holding court every Sunday with Detroit's only weekly jungle night in the Labyrinth (in the basement of the downtown Ramada, Cass Avenue entrance) is filling in the gap with an all-night party featuring former Spacelings and Bassheads member John Ryan, who, with partner Ron, performs a set of live, and, one can imagine, pretty dusted, electro, at 3 a.m. The one upcoming party scheduled for Halloween is "Helter Skelter," and boasts GZA/Genius and other members of Wu-Tang Clan headlining, which in itself is an accomplishment seeing that the Wu's have a hard time showing up for tour dates, let alone an after-hours party. Promoter Kujo says GZA is a confirmed booking and that an in-store appearance by the partial 'Clan is in the works, also offered: "I can't reveal what other Wu-Tang members besides GZA will be there, but there's one whose record's coming out next month, so that should be a clue." Also scheduled for "Helter Skelter": platinum-selling Miami bass king Magic Mike, Chicago booty master DJ Funk -- live with his 505 Groovebox again -- and Detroit's own Gary Chandler spinning bass with DJ Southside. Bo and the Hazard-S productions crew will be throwing a pre-party, but no info line is yet available. Take note, the "Helter Skelter" info line (313-438-6058) won't be up until the day of the party, but advance tix are available at Ann Arbor's Mojo, Roseville's Record Time and Birmingham's Changes.
Detroit-via-Chicago house producer LA Williams has taken his sweet time getting his Chisel Records label up and running but, as evidenced by two new Chisel releases, it's been worth the wait. His "Chunky Trks." 12-inch, with its dark, cavernous beat, harks back to the roots of house music, when it was a deejay using the "house" (club's) drum machine, usually a 909 to harden the beat of disco and soul records. The B-side takes a radio-snatched Sunday sermon(!) and throws different slammin' beats under it. A second Chisel 12-inch, "This Is A Test," crosses the line more into techno, but less on the hard tip and more on that fluttery, synth-rapture feel that makes it safe for house jocks to spin without clearing the floor. For more information on Chisel releases, call 248-545-9483 or e-mail Chiselman@aol.com.
FEMUR THE FUNK
A few months back, Friday night Motor Resident DJ Bone (Eric Dulan, pictured) recorded a set of Detroit classics for a "Live from Motor" mix CD that will feature everything from classic Model 500 tracks to current Underground Resistance cuts. No word on when it will come out; Motor's been talking to national dance label London-ffrr, but no release date has been set yet. Meanwhile, Bone has released his debut 12", the Unleashed EP, on his own Subject:Detroit label. As anyone who's heard his sets at Motor knows, Bone likes the more organic-sounding, percussion-sampling techno, and for the most part, Unleashed's four tracks jazz up the hard 4/4 with all kinds of drum flourishes. Hidden at the end of side two, however, is the Philip Glass-ish "Feel" -- four-and-a-half minutes of hypnotic strings and keys twinkling like some rave answer to Koyaanisqatsi. Damn. Out now at a better dance music department near you.