Long Live Death Disco: Recapping 13 years of Perth's long-running club night
After spanning over a decade, the club night - held at present-day Amplifier / Capitol - will close on December 28th.
Over the last decade, we've seen a bunch of nightclubs and live music venues come and go. Sure, much of the attention has been on the east coast - especially in Sydney, where the now-defunct lockout laws took control of much of the city's nightlife region and shut things down - but Perth has had its fair share of closures too, whether it be intimate live music venues - The Bakery and Devilles Pad, for example, although the latter has reopened as Badlands Bar - or nightclubs that closed their doors and unfortunately, never reopened; the venues themselves often continuing to operate in present-day, but completely redone and remarketed.
Throughout this time, however, one club night has remained constant - Death Disco. Since launching in 2007, the club night - which operates out of Amplifier / Capitol, which will be shutting for renovations at the end of this year - has become a mainstay in Perth's nightlife culture, labelled as the city's longest-running club night that, over the years, have welcomed talent amongst the country's biggest: RÜFÜS DU SOL, Flume, Cut Copy, Van She, Midnight Juggernauts, Empire Of The Sun and internationals such as Diplo and Simian Mobile Disco.
Today, Death Disco looks a hell of a lot different to how it did back in 2007, but throughout its entire lifetime, one thing has remained: the club's focus to uplift those early on in their careers, whether it be local DJs finding their feet in the DJ world at late-night slots, or acts like Dee Dee Dums in their early live shows. Skip forward ten years, and bands like them are now internationally-trotting, country flag-flyers named Tame Impala, and others - RÜFÜS, Flume - could probably sell-out the club night 10 to 20 times over.
For the brothers behind it all - Anton and Andrei Mazandarani - Death Disco's big finalé will bring the end of an era; its last night, December 28th, held on the final week of Amplifier Capitol's week standing as it currently is, set to be closed for a completely new face to launch in March 2020.
In the meantime - and for the sakes of good ol' nostalgia - we've got the brothers behind the longest-running Perth club night to run us through their favourite memories of the last 13 years, from the times that some of today's current-biggest acts played their side band rooms, to the personal memories that have stuck with them throughout the years. Get the lowdown on their final few events here.
Long Live Death Disco: Memories from Perth's longest-running club night:
"Gosh, I don’t know where to start. I think it all starts with Where's Your Head At that song was the embodiment of early DD. Obviously there’s been loads of great guests and the birthdays are always great. I think for me some of the best moments have just been regular nights when everything has come together perfectly. Those rare occasions when the punters have come out in droves and just got with the program.
I think those really special nights were mostly just as new genres were taking off and it felt like we were part of something a bit bigger than just a club night. When we started, blog house and electro were surging with stuff like Boys Noize, Justice, Soulwax and Trentemoller remixes and Bang Gang [Records] etc. Then being there when fidget house took off, and loving the massive new rave sounds like Fake Blood, The Bloody Beetroots and Boy 8 Bit. Early dubstep was a bit special and when that came around it felt really fresh and exciting. I still have deep love for Nero, Flux, Caspar and early Skrillex and Bassnectar. Early trap was also exciting times, with stuff like Yellow Claw and Flosstradamus.
Watching the rise and rise of Australian dance and supporting everyone from Bag Raiders, RÜFÜS [DU SOL], PNAU, Flume, What So Not and more recently, people like FISHER and Dom Dolla and so many more. Supporting amazing local producers like Slumberjack, Shockone, Axen, Levi Walsh, Shazam, Echo and Sidetrack and of course the mighty Penduluml; we have been alone for the entire journey. Tunes tunes tunes. It’s always been about the tunes and seeing people lose their collective shit is a massive buzz. Hopefully providing the soundtracks to a million great nights out, trying to be as inclusive and joyous as possible to bring people together." - Andrei Maz.
"I’m with Andrei. The more I think about it the more it really becomes about the music. Death Disco started at the right time, in the right venue. Everything aligned. The first 10 years were effortless, with a packed dance floor from 10 PM, lines around the block, everyone happy to pay a cover charge and rave hard till 4 or 5 AM. The scene has completely changed now, for good and for badm and the last three years have been a much harder slogm but ultimately we survived and were able to showcase so many wicked Perth producers and DJs, giving many of them their first big, properly produced event to play at and also providing a platform to emerging Aussie acts from all over the country has been a real privilege. Honestly, what’s better than earning some extra cash and providing for your families whilst having the time of your life? No regrets!!" - Anton Maz.
TRASH! feat. Sex Panther / April 27, 2007
This one is a highlight but no pictures, fliers, nothing…just haze memories… This was only about five to six weeks into Death Disco at Capitol and I was managing Sex Panther. Amazing band and wonderful group of girls.
I remember being blown away by Dee Dee Dums and meeting someone’s parents. They were so young they had to be accompanied by a guardian. Anyway, they went on to do alright... as in best fucking band on the planet! Hello Tame Impala. This was when we could still incorporate live bands, indie and rock into the mix as well as all the emerging electroclash, indie-dance, house and techno. A great time for music and the Perth scene.
Peak Amps/Caps Saturday action, feat. Nina Las Vegas + more / 2010 - 2014
From around 2010 - 2014 was absolute peak Amps/Caps. There’d always be awesome local and touring acts in Amps bringing out all the live music fans be they indie-kids, headbangers, skater kids, Emos, Punks, chin-strokers, you name it and come midnight when those doors open it’d just be this amazing potpourri of subcultures and styles across the two dance floors, united in their debauchery. Love the tune on this vid too. Doctor P remix of Love Goes Down by Plan B. Absolute banger.
triple j House Party feat. Flume, Nina Las Vegas, What So Not, Beni + more / 2012
I think this video says it all. Nina Las Vegas knows how to party. triple j's House Party is still a killer show but it hasn’t quite been the same since Nina left. She was never afraid to mix up genres and BPM and always had the crowd wanting more. She brought Flume and What So Not to the world’s attention too, so maximum kudos. This was the first of about 3 or 4 events we hosted at Capitol thanks to the fun times and good memories cultivated each time by the amazing team at the venue and audience of course, all the touring acts always commended the Perth audience on being so up for a good time.
Maximum respect to Amps/Caps’ Marketing guru, Gina Goodrich on securing these incredible tours for the club. Being involved and getting to DJ afterwards was always an absolute treat.
Death Disco's 6th Birthday feat. RÜFÜS, Zeke Beats, Phetsta, Willow Beats, EGO, Linda Marigliano + more / 2013
There have been so many unforgettable nights, that I’ve forgotten.
I can’t believe RÜFÜS played our event and I put them on the smaller Amplifier stage…
Teaching Senator Scott Ludlam how to DJ and throwing a massive fundraising event, ‘LUDAPALOOZA’ for him with Sam Perry, Lilt, Command Q and the WA Greens / 2014
Scott is an absolute champ and Australia is worse off without him in the Senate… although he is much better off being as far away from that seething den of inequity as one can get.
This was a killer event. We raised over $7k and Scott comfortably retained his seat with The Greens WA winning almost 16% of the vote. A record. I like to think we helped a bit. This video went viral and appeared on all the news bulletins and websites for a few days leading up to the election.
Others, from across the years / 2007 - 2019
Other highlights were DJing at Belvoir between Luke Steele, Tame Impala and MGMT…that was incredible.
We also got hooked up through Purple Sneakers and Mark Gerber (Oxford Art Factory) and were the resident DJs for every Big Day Out after-party between 2010 and 2014. Being the end of the epic national tour the Perth after party was always the most debauched. They usually took place in the ballroom and pool area of The Duxton Hotel and would go through to 6AM-ish. Holy fuck they were wild. Dizzee Rascal and Peaches having a dance-off to Chic, Bloody Beetroots high-fiving us on our DJ’ing, Nick Cave reading a novel in a corner, Mani and members of The Bad Seeds poolside cracking us all up, Wolfmother, Rammstein and strippers in the pool….proper rock and roll mayhem.
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