Rave Diaries 01:

No (worthy)
rave in the USA!


Image of ravers waiting in line to enter Beghain.

Image of ravers waiting in line to enter Beghain..

And you can @ me on that. An audacious statement? Perhaps. Those that object, please do challenge me to a proper party!

This may have been an easier duel to entice in Raveland B.C. (before corona) but honestly having tasted the mildly peppered U.S. techo scene from Detroit to LA and Miami, the vibes have tested positively weak. The only exception is the now closed Eighteenth Street Lounge in Washington, DC. Blessings to that magical space and the fromidable DJ Sam “the Man'' Burns' deep house legacy. ESL’s Sunday service was a sanctuary to so many in that sleepy city, and I will never forget the beautiful energy. I would love the underworld ravers to shamefully disprove me. We shall see. to be fair, It’s Mortal Kombat level annihilation to disagree with me, if you haven’t ever raved overseas.


There is a potent ingredient missing in the US rave scene and that is the critical electricity of unpretentious collective energy. The speakers can’t make it and the drugs can’t fake it. The energy I speak of is a culmination of every single viable and inanimate thing present at the party. All of these elements combine at varying degrees of intensity to create the techno and house heartbeat. It can only be experienced through a masterful invasion of all the five senses with every audible transition.

Before I bash any particular party, every vibe exists for the crowd that is attracted to it.

Inevitably, there is a stark contrast between a Charlotte De Witte set at Club Space and a regular shmegular weekend at the paradoxical dark paradise that is the beloved planet Berghain. Berlin, at nearly every chance, gives us absolute energy. Last year’s Pornceptual is a rare exception, but that deserves its own brief, bleak recap. The thing about commercial, well… anything, is it substantially lacks authenticity. People are there more for a status flex than they are to genuinely connect to either the music or to others. Superficiality is the face of these parties, and that in itself is devoid of pure techno soul.

Techno Soul is intentionally unpretentious. The sound can fill your ears, but the frequency is flat and lukewarm. Energy fluctuates uncontrollably but it is mandatory for it to feel like an invisible thread is genuinely connecting the collective. Even virtually! Everyone came to the rave to feel Free, regardless if the feeling is fleeting. Although I have not been to a quality rave in the states, it may still possibly exist. Magical ravers please submit your best list.

A virtual revival may just get things to where they need to be post 2020, when the effects of this odd Plan-demic fade away quickly.

By: Alicia Golden - @TrippyLuna