In the first months of 2022 I got to a point where, if you asked me point blank what and when was the last major musical event I attended, I had no idea what to answer. Apart from a not-so-satisfying techno parenthesis in Bratislava during the winter, to find the answer I’d have to go back and dig into pre-pandemic memories. This protracted absence from the dancefloor, coupled with my tendency to be introverted and other lockdown-syndrome effects had dragged me into a state of complete apathy, almost fear, toward any kind of live music experience. Why should I go to a crowded, messy, sweaty place when instead I can experience the beauty of the music I love in such a comfortable and curated environment as my own home? This is what I ended up asking myself more and more.
To escape this condition I knew I needed a push. A motivation stronger than all the delusions that were holding me back. To be completely honest, I wasn’t expecting it to come from the most “virtual” of the music genres that I regularly listen to: wave. When the Liquid Ritual event was announced, I immediately realized that it could be the turning point I was waiting for. I’ve listened to a lot of music since I was a little kid, but I’ve always struggled to develop a sense of belonging to any particular community within any music genre. With wave it has always been different though. Whether it’s because I’ve been able to witness firsthand most of its history, because it is still a relatively small circle or simply because of the quality of its members, I have always felt an unprecedented affinity with this niche. Moved by both hope, a newfound excitement, and a huge dose of anxiety too, I eventually jumped on a plane and headed to London.
What did I (re)discover? That listening to wave in a dark room alone is amazing, but listening to wave in a dark room filled with passionate people is next level. These two nights at Bar A Bar have taught me how to love the dancefloor again, they fulfilled so many buried raver fantasies, and brought back a version of myself I’ve craved to be. Singing ‘Tel Aviv’ at the top of my lungs, losing my mind at the first notes of Deadcrow’s set, waving (pun intended) to the notes of classics played by Kareful at 3 in the morning. All experiences that may sound common to those of you who are lucky enough to regularly go to concerts, but that have been missing from my life for too long. As far as I’m concerned, that’s why I’m so grateful to the Liquid Ritual team. Not just for the mere fact of having organized an event and physically bringing artists and fans in one place. But for having restored and reshaped my passion for live music. For having brought my dreams alive.
Last night, wave saved my life.
Cover photo by kaleidokitty