Call for Music Critics and Essayists: If you're a smart, historically-minded music critic or essayist, let your voice be heard by our quality readership.
Call for Music Critics and Essayists: If you're a smart, historically-minded music critic or essayist, let your voice be heard by our quality readership.

DJ Irene: Global Housediva 2: Live in Ibiza

Dj Irene
Global Housediva 2: Live in Ibiza
Strictly Hype

This ain’t no ear candy. The pump, the bump, the funky, freaky beats are going to get you, whether you like it or not.

This is hard driving, chop-socky, club-infused music. The sweat of others seemingly drips over you. Eyes glaze, bodies rock and floors jump. While you may be listening to this CD in your quiet ’70s retro apartment or in an aluminium-sided house in the ‘burbs, you will be momentarily (for an hour anyway) be transported to the heart-stoppin’, head-pounding, body-shaking floor of Club Irene. Responsible, is Los Angeles diva, DJ Irene.

A fixture of the L.A. club scene for more than 15 years, DJ Irene is well known and loved. And it’s clear why her following continues to swell. The excitement she has for her work entices and energizes the crowds. “People are actually my favourite, so I play for the people. Whatever their energy is, I vibe off that and then they vibe off my energy. Maybe that’s why I’m so energetic!”

A former commercial photography student, it was upon meeting Henry De Lapena that her world suddenly went from the pictorial to the aural. DJ-ing jolted her system. She was hooked. She spent all of her time watching and listening to DJs and practicing. This lead to nine years of spinning at L.A.’s Circus Disco, where she culled her fan base and they haven’t left her side since. Now her repertoire has expanded to include being sponsored by Pioneer, continuing to play for rave and club fans, along with reporting for Billboard and producing and remixing club favourites such as “Don’t Go Breakin’ My Heart” by Sonic Dream Collective.

Blood-pumping grooves and chunky beats are Irene’s signature. If the crowd isn’t freakin’, she’s doing something wrong. Global Housediva 2: Live in Ibiza is no exception to her bumpin’ beats reputation. Mixed live at Arena in Ibiza, a mainstay for anyone who’s anyone in DJ and club culture, this 31-song CD is crazed with such industry heavies as Darren R., Fatboy Slim and Roger Sanchez. Seamless from beginning to end, this hour of hard house with progressive house, trance and disco house straddling the tracks is so beat heavy that operating heavy materials, driving or doing anything that requires serious concentration, is not advised.

There are tracks to suit any flavour. Funk — “Bring in the Funk” by CZR & ITO and “Feel the Phunk” by Raoul Zerna; Dance/House — “Another Chance” by Roger Sanchez, “Finally” by Kings of Tomorrow and “Real Close” by Exodus and severe head-bustin’ house like Stimulant DJS’ “Freestyle Flow, Anne Savage’s club-theme “Real Freaks” and Fatboy Slim’s “Star 69 (What the F**k)”.

While the beat is thump — thump — thumpin’, there is no lack of melodic material. “Here with Me” by Johnny Vicious Featuring Nina, “Melancholy Rose” by Operatica and “Innocente (DJ Tiesto Remix)” by Delirium are smooth enough moments for outside the club, entertaining or just hangin’ at home.

There are no hammocks here — weak tracks that are programmed between two good ones. Just serious energy with no breaks, rest stops or diversions along the way.

This ready for action, in your face CD just proves that DJ Irene continues to pump the funk, grind the beat and mix some of the best sounds in music today.