Man Power Recalls Last DJ Gig in Mexico Before COVID-19 Lockdown

Man Power Last DJ Gig Before Lockdown

Yesterday we launched our Last DJ Set series where we’ll be talking to DJs about the last set they played before lockdowns and travel bans went into effect. First up was a chat with Detroit-bred Berlin-based techno luminary Alan Oldham (a.k.a. DJ T-1000), who recalled his last set in Romania.

Today we’re thrilled to bring you our chat with the one and only Geoff Kirkwood (a.k.a. Man Power), a prominent purveyor of sublime house and techno who draws upon a wealth of musical styles in his next-level productions and DJ sets.

Read on to find out about Kirkwood’s final set before the world went sideways and learn what he’s been up to in quarantine. Spoiler alert: he’s been keeping busy.

When and where was your last DJ gig?

Man Power: Foro Normandie in Mexico City

How did it go?

It was fantastic. Lots of energy.

What was your mindset going into it? Where had you played previously?

It was an unusual gig as it was my first time appearing as my techno and hardcore alias MPX. I’d never played in this guise publicly before.

Did any tracks, in particular, go over especially well during that gig?

No Moo’s “Mallet Fury really” was a special moment. It’s quite a cerebral slice of Drexcyan electro, so it provided a moment of hypnotic communal reflection in amongst all the tough syncopated techno.

What is your best memory from that gig?

Watching a bunch of beautiful and cool Mexicans, approximately 20 years younger than me, dancing to Kicks Like a Mule’s “The Bouncer,” one of the tracks that got me into raving when I was a small kid.

Everyone can’t wait for clubs and festivals to begin again. What do you miss most about DJing? How are you keeping your skills sharp?

I miss the communion. I didn’t realize how much a part of my life that was until it was taken away from me. It’s like when somebody tells you to think about breathing and it becomes difficult because it’s an automatic function, not a conscious one. I’ve been recording at least two mixes a week for people while I’ve been locked down. It’s keeping me on my toes and forcing me to dig through my own music and buy new things.

A lot of DJs have been doing live streams and working on tracks. What have you been working on during the lockdown? How can fans support you right now?

I was prolific when I didn’t have much time to go in the studio, so this lockdown has seen a surplus of creativity which I’ve tried to channel into new projects other than Man Power.

  • That said, I did release my next four EPs (16 tracks) to raise money for the NHS.
  • I did an open remix challenge and I’m releasing about 30 of the most appropriate submissions to raise money for charities that help NHS workers.
  • I started two completely new projects and wrote a full album for one of them.
  • As mentioned I’ve been doing a bunch of mixes every week to help people who want to use my platform to gain themselves extra attention.
  • I’ve also done live streams for my friends at Sub Club Glasgow, O/NDA New York/Rio de Janeiro and TOPAZdeluxe in Monterrey, Mexico.
  • I’ve put three albums into production from other artists for my label, Me Me Me.
  • I’ve curated a 30-track compilation of original music by various artists for Gottwood Festival’s Gottwax label, which I manage for them.
  • I’ve also been releasing irregular videos that act as kind of tutorials but mainly done in an effort to demystify the dance music world and increase its accessibility for talented people who may not have the same advantages to bluff their way in as everyone else.

Any last words on your last gig?

Machino, the live act who played before me, is fucking ace.

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Darren Ressler

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