Dusty’s Invasion 

UK’s Inland Knights bringing down the house

What: Drop Music’s Invasion Tour

Where: Dusty’s

When: April 5

House, house, and more house. It’s time to celebrate that spring solstice in your runners or your trainers.

Get eyes and ears ready for a UK invasion with producers Inland Knights, headliners at the Invasion Tour.

The tour is organized by Savage Beagle resident DJ, Milton Currie. It’s a travelling production from L.A.-based Planet Groove Entertainment. Inland Knights come to Whistler after playing Miami and L.A.

"I’ve been bringing in DJs over the last few years, including Asad, but this is definitely the biggest show I’ve organized," says Currie, whose last international record shopping trip took him to London, UK.

"The music scene over there is ahead of us. What’s underground here (in terms of house music) is mainstream over there. I saw guys in suits walking into HMV and buying house albums," he says.

The show format features the main room, where a two hour set from DJ Milton is followed by three hours of Inland Knights’ deep house mixing at the scale hall.

An additional chill out room will be hosted by Dusty’s Honey residents, Mat the Alien, also originally from the UK, and Ghetto Boy.

While the show’s content will be familiar to industry insiders as well as record shop scouts, music is wide open to anyone with a taste for new beats, and house grooves.

The Inland Knights, Laurence Ritchie and Andy Riley, have been producing with Drop Music in the U.K. since they first discovered acid house parties in the late ’80s.

"Deep house is soulful, and feels good – it’s great music to move to," says Riley.

Inland Knights regularly perform at London’s Fabric night club, as well as The End and more intimate venues.

Ritchie started outdoor sound system parties in the woodlands in Sheffield, which grew in size under the themed header, Smokescreen. The word-of-mouth parties continue this summer from June through August, if you get across the pond.

Riley, who was involved with the Toka Project with Steve Walker, formed a musical partnership with Ritchie in 1996. Their Drop sound was honed from years of running large dub systems at these outdoor gatherings.

As the number of people trying to make it as DJs continues to grow, most try and develop one distinct style that caters to the audience.

It’s all about the mix.

"Two different DJs might take five records and mix them five different ways, and something new is created every time," says Currie.

The song segues, as well as the song choice, are of prime importance.

"The part in between the songs, as well as how the song is put together, is what differentiates each person’s style. The goal is one, continuous mix, in 10 or 12 songs," he adds.

"I’m a perfectionist, so if it’s not quite right I’ll do it over and over. Your ear gets trained to listen to the way that songs are put together."

Currie figured mixing music made sense, after listening to so much of it as a doorperson in the early years at Tommy Africa’s.

"I would buy records, and then practice after hours. I learned a lot from opening for a bunch of guest DJs that Czech brought in – learning from watching what they did."

Next came a residency at the Savage Beagle, and the rest is history. Currie plays Mondays and Thursdays, catering to a mainstream audience, which in Whistler includes lots of hip hop.

And the Inland Knights bring years of experience to the show.

The best part of being in the music industry for over a decade?

‘The fact that we can do something we love to do, and travel with it as well," says Riley.

And the worst?

"Planes. I really don’t like them."

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