Jon Hop­kins’s mu­sic brings peo­ple to­gether and it of­ten re­sults in a col­lec­tive loss of mind, body and soul

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - THE TAKE - LOUISE BRUTON

Down in the belly of Body & Soul’s main stage this June, thou­sands of peo­ple lost their minds at the same time dur­ing Jon Hop­kins’s late-night Satur­day set. It was dur­ing the heat­wave and it was one of the rare oc­ca­sions when fes­ti­val go­ers’ big­gest chal­lenge was dust and not mud. Jack­ets were a dis­tant mem­ory and it felt like the sun only dis­ap­peared for an hour, sneak­ily reap­pear­ing at about 5am, when the last of the sched­uled mu­sic shut down for the night.

Per­haps it was the heat, or our hap­pi­ness that we were ac­tu­ally hav­ing a proper sum­mer, but Hop­kins’s set was one of the stand-out live mu­sic mo­ments of the year. The English elec­tronic DJ and pro­ducer is this week’s VBF for the magic he weaves in song.

On May 3rd at 11.59pm – a school night – I was brush­ing my teeth and idly check­ing my Twit­ter feed when I saw two friends count­ing down the sec­onds un­til Hop­kins’s fifth al­bum, Sin­gu­lar­ity, was re­leased into the world. It was a school night but I thought “YOLO” and pressed play any­way. By the end of the ti­tle track, I was drool­ing tooth­paste foam and up way past my bed­time. That’s the Hop­kins ef­fect. When his mu­sic plays, he is the mas­ter of your cere­bral and phys­i­cal re­ac­tions. If you’re not jump­ing in tan­dem with thou­sands of other peo­ple on a grassy hill, with every­one mouthing “Oh! My! God!” as the drop kicks in, you’re drool­ing tooth­paste at home alone.

A reg­u­lar guest at Body & Soul, Hop­kins is the cat­tle wran­gler of Ir­ish elec­tronic fiends. Songs such as Open Eye Sig­nal from 2013’s Im­mu­nity soundtrack sum­mer nights damp­ened by sweat and en­gulfed by a late-night mist and if you want to crack it down about 10 notches, his 2015 com­pi­la­tion al­bum, Late Night Tales ,isa sooth­ing balm for the soul. Fea­tur­ing con­tri­bu­tions from Dark­star, Four Tet, Nils Frahms and School of Seven Bells, it’s an emo­tive al­bum that aims right for the heart and the tear ducts. A par­tic­u­lar high­light is when Hop­kins strips it way down for I Re­mem­ber, a fuzzy pi­ano cover of Yeasayer’s 2010 song.

On Oc­to­ber 18th, an­other school night, Hop­kins plays Dublin’s Vicar Street. While it’s dif­fi­cult to imag­ine a set like his be­ing con­tained within the four walls of an ac­tual build­ing, the vast ma­jor­ity of tick­ets hold­ers are throw­ing cau­tion to the wind and treat­ing this school night like a week­end night. Sure, it’s a Thurs­day. You’ve had a long week. Syn­chro­nise your body so that your heart­beat matches his own thud­ding beats. Let your hair down and dance like you don’t have to get the last bus home. Sure, why not miss the last bus home and get a taxi back in­stead? Ac­tu­ally, take Fri­day off work. It’s not of­ten you’re guar­an­teed a full fes­ti­val set ex­pe­ri­ence out­side of an out­door fes­ti­val set­ting – ex­clud­ing the up­com­ing Me­trop­o­lis Fes­ti­val, of course.

Hop­kins brings good peo­ple to­gether un­der his com­mand. If the left­over joy from this sum­mer is wan­ing, this gig is set to top you up for an­other few weeks at least.

Jon Hop­kins plays Dublin’s Vicar Street on Oc­to­ber 18th


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