New imprint Obsession Detroit kicks off with their debut release "Your Love."
Detroit's music community is buzzing about a new dance club slated to open in April or early May-just in time for the flocks of techno heads descending on the city for Movement. Co-run by longtime promoter/club owner Amir Daiza and curated by the local DJ/producer YOS, the venue will take over the space that currently houses key rock venue Magic Stick in Midtown Detroit's Majestic Complex.
In the meantime, Daiza and YOS have joined forces Obsession Detroit, the adjoining record label for their imminent club. The label will also be a platform for Daiza and YOS to release their own music, as Daiza returns to DJing under the alias A Guy Called Amir.
"It's about nourishing the new talent in Detroit and bringing them up, showing them how to be more professional and how to understand ways to position themselves in this business," says Daiza about his new label's guiding ethos. Their debut release "Your Love," a deep house number that reflects on the acceptance of universal love, is streaming exclusively below.
Chances are looking good that Daiza and YOS will be able to pull their ambitious projects off. After all, both are veterans of Detroit's dance music scene. YOS has been DJing since 1999 and producing since 2006, building a name for himself in Detroit's dance community with releases on Nervous Records, Ultra Records, Peak Hour, and his own imprint Slur Records.
Daiza, on the other hand, has owned many of the city's most iconic music venues since 1980, including Elektricity, arguably the metro area's top venue for big-name EDM acts like Dada Life, Krewella, and Paul Oakenfold.
But this fresh venture sees Daiza returning to the music that fueled his passion for the nightlife industry-techno, house and disco. Crucially, the new club will sit on Woodward Avenue in the heart of the city, as opposed to the suburbs. In that sense, it will be closer in spirit to Saint Andrews Hall, another music venue that Daiza has owned. Saint Andrews was essential to pushing electronic music culture in the 90s and 00s, and hosted some of Detroit's biggest dance music parties-including Three Floors of Fun, where a DJ would spin a different sound on each floor. The bottom of those three floors was called The Shelter, a name synonymous with Detroit electronic music history; it's where Ghostly International found its footing and Richie Hawtin jumpstarted his career. If you've seen 8 Mile, that defining rap battle scene was based on the madness that went down at The Shelter.
This is the environment that Daiza and YOS yearn to bring back with their fledging label and club: an unpretentious home for Detroit's rising techno and house artists to showcase their talent, and a platform to push new sounds into the city and world beyond. "If there's going to be a new club, [new music] is the direction it's going to go. That's how the label is going to be," says YOS, who plans to shape the club's sound with nights of rising techno and house talent.
YOS and Daiza's efforts to inject life into don't end there. Portions of the profit from "Your Love," as well as full merchandise profits from the label, will go to Bridges for Music-a charity that supports electronic music development in developing countries. They chose the charity based on their mutual underlying mission: bringing people together through sound.
Ashley Zlatopolsky is an electronic music journalist based in Detroit - @ashley_detroit