The beautiful Potato Head venue which looks out over the Indian Ocean has already seen DJ Harvey, Hot Chip, Gilles Peterson, Roy Ayres, Horse Meat Disco, Felix Dickinson, Osunlade and many more gracing the decks at Sun Down Circle over the last year with some epic sun-kissed and star-speckled shows. Such artists have never been seen before in Bali, indicative of the ambition and growth Potato Head has. It’s also redolent of Ibiza’s early days, a dreamy place with a unique vision; there’s a burgeoning radio station and record label in development, set to work with local Balinese musicians and artists and harness their musical creativity and bring them to the international stage.
Sun Down Circle is the most exciting independent music project to emerge from South-East Asia, with Dea – one of the region’s most enchanting DJs – a huge part of its growth, with Tiago, Jonny Nash and Gerry Rooney forming the tour’s guests alongside Bali-based DJ Phil Cooper.
It was toward the end of last year when Gilles Peterson first heard DJ Dea at Potato Head. This chance meeting led to an invitation from Gilles to come and play at World Wide in France, for Gilles didn’t just hear any set from Dea – he heard the best DJ session he had witnessed in a decade. And the seeds were sewn for the tour to bloom in 2016.
Gilles says: “I stood aside and let this master remind me of the art of creating new images with music. His vibe is somewhere between Harry Thurman Underwater, alternative psychy-ness from outer Papua New Guinea and Euro Disco b-sides. The man has been collecting from the alternative cheap bins whilst I’ve been heading towards the more conservative crates. He’s built an entire set around a sound that never sounded better to my ears, like the essence of Balearic on a private beach in 1978. That night I peeked into his record box while his back was turned (terrible etiquette I know) and only recognised one record! After that night, it became my ambition to have Dea on the beach at World Wide in 2016.”
Aradea Barandana, known as Dea, grew up in Jakarta, the bustling capital of Indonesia, where he began to develop his passion for 70’s disco, psychedelic rock and world music. It’s a career which has seen him quietly and diligently develop into one of the most inspired and inspiring DJs around, crafting truly epic sets with music segued from so many influences, which had Gilles so impressed at Potato Head. And now Dea is headlining the Sun Down Circle tour this summer, a sublime DJ who is finally being brought a wider audience.
The world tour takes in six dates, with Dea, Phil and guests bringing their uniquely sublime sounds to the dates below:
Saturday 28 May is Potato Head Singapore at the Keong Saik Carnival, then in Potato Head in Hong Kong, on Sunday June 12, Dea and Phil take over the decks; then it’s Thursday 23 June at Brilliant Corners in London for a Love International warm up with Dea plus guest Gerry Rooney; next up is Sunday 26 June at Pikes, Ibiza with Dea and Phil; Sunday 3 and Monday 4 July takes in Love International, Tisno, Croatia with Dea, Phil, Jonny Nash and Tiago; and finally the tour finishes on Friday 8 July at Gilles’ World Wide Festival in Sete, France, with Dea, Phil and Jonny Nash.
Phil has over 20 years of DJing behind him and has played at many of the world’s best clubs and festivals, from Space in Ibiza to Bestival in the UK, via Lake of Stars in Malawi and Singapore’s Zouk, with his style as eclectic as his vast range of shows. Phil’s career has included running and owning record shops, records labels, NuNorthern Soul and KAT recordings, radio presenting, artist management and his own PR agency – he is a hugely respected figure in the industry around the world.
Jonny Nash is as equally comfortable behind the decks as in the studio, spanning all forms of oddball dance music, from Chicago, Detroit, Rimini and beyond, and is a regular guest at Potato Head and also owns and runs the ‘Melody as Truth’ record label.
Lisbon’s Tiago is a weekly resident at Club Lux, and has remixed one of the first releases on the SDC label coming out later in the year and played at the Sun Down Circle parties too.
Finally, Liverpudlian by birth, now based in London, Gerry Rooney is an esteemed record collector and DJ, one of Harvey’s cohorts and founders of the (in)famous Black Cock record label.
Sun Down Circle – Love International Croatia Warm Up, Brilliant Corners, 470 Kingsland Rd, London, E8 4AE, Thursday 23 June, 7pm – midnight.