Carl Cox in Houston

Carl Cox touched down in Houston at Meridian last night after a very, very long abscence. I haven't seen Coxy since July 3 1999 at the State Palace Theater in New Orleans, and there's no way in hell a little rain and cold air was going to prevent me from catching him in my hometown. His travelling companion for the tour, Mark Lewis, warmed up the crowd with a slick underground house set that progressively went deeper and deeper; whipping the crowd into a frenzy for the Global himself...

Coxy came onstage a little after 1 AM, and his presence in the room ignited the crowd. He immediately served up a slamming new remix of Egyptian Empire's The Horn Track.

He progressed into some ultra-fat tech funk that I suspect is an upcoming Marco Bailey track. From there, he dipped into some recent Smith + Selway stuff which was likely their track Labryinth but I could be mistaken.

Carl appeared to be using Ableton on his Mac to cue up tracks, but I thought he was also playing off of CDs, too. He was using a standard console for his EQ effects, and it seemed like he may have been feeding his Ableton tracks through the CD players, too. Unfortunately I couldn't really tell because he was playing onstage and I couldn't get a good angle on it. I never saw him holding a CD or loading one into the player, yet he peppered the set with backspins and his infamous single backward beat cuts.

It's difficult to trainspot a Cox set, because he plays so many new and unreleased tracks. I believe I heard Chymera's Xcela, Mi Manera's Attractiva, and even threw in one of those popular Message in a Bottle remixes that are kinda sorta popular right now.

And how was the notoriously ghetto Houston crowd? Very high-energy, friendly, and ready to dance all night long. People were dancing on blocks, the breakdancers showed up, and some guys even showed up to do a little painting. There's nothing like seeing somebody dance on a platform AND paint a canvas. Mark Lewis and Carl Cox was definitely giving them some love throughout the course of the night.

I left a little before 3AM, and the crowd was still havin' it. Big time. I hope Coxy makes it down to Houston again sometime soon, because he's still my number one DJ of all time. Definitely the best DJ set I've heard this year.


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