One of Sydney's longest running and most iconic nightclubs, Chinese Laundry, kicked off a completely revamped music policy this month. We caught up with Paul Azzopardi, who has recently returned to the club as Musical Director, to find out what's in store from Chinese Laundry 2.0.
You left as promoter of Laundry to work for Soapbox, a division of Ministry Of Sound, in September last year. Did you ever envisage you’d be back booking music for Laundry again so soon? No I didn’t to be honest but I am very happy to be back in there again as it is an amazing club and Sydney’s club scene needs a club like Chinese Laundry as there isn’t another club like it in the city. I've taken on the role of Musical Director for the club and we have some great young hosts, Jackson Donegal and Elinor Williams, who now oversee the nights at the venue.
What can we expect from Laundry’s new revamped music programme? How will things be different artist wise (both locally and internationally) now that you have Ministry Of Sound behind you? Our aim is to provide quality musical offerings every weekend and make it the place you want to go.
Friday nights is called Bassic and we have given it the tag line of “Sydney’s home for all things Bass”. We will be focusing a lot on the really current sounds taking inspiration slightly from the Diplo/Mad Decent crew, trap, Australian sound, future beats and also drum 'n' bass, dubstep and some heavier sounds too.
Saturday nights are called LNDRY as we wanted to bring some more focus back on to the venue, and with three rooms to cater for all tastes we are able to provide a broad offering. The Laundry room is house and electro, the Cave is techno, progressive house and all things that fit in those styl,s and the Sand Bar is hip-hop.
So the Garden parties are returning to the Slip Inn courtyard, yes? What was the reason behind the move back? The Garden Parties are back! That is correct, we all agreed bringing the Garden Parties back to Chinese Laundry was a priority as the parties are very special, but it also means that the focus for everyone is 100% back at the Slip Inn complex.
John Digweed is kicking off the first one this year. Can we expect some more exciting internationals for the Garden Parties this summer? John Digweed will be kicking things off and really excited to have him back with us for the fourth time. We have the whole season planned out with six parties in the making with amazing names.
The club has already hosted some awesome internationals since its re-launch, including the much anticipated Anklepants gig. What were your thought on it, beyond all the hype and online chatter? Ankelpants was incredible, we have always pushed the boundaries at the club and always tried to make our offering different to what you can get at other venues so when the chance to book what is the easily the most Interesting artist in the world, it was one we were always going to be all over. His show was one that you need to see to really get. He is an amazing showman and his productions sounded incredible on a big system. It was a big home run in terms of performance and marketing / viral facebook exposure.
You were artist booker for Laundry for nine long years. What’s the one of the funniest/weirdest stories you can share with us during this stint? Oh man, there are so many that I would love to tell but really can’t so here are a a couple of PC stories....
Some quality moments would be kicking on with Groove Armada after they performed and then Tom from Groove Armada swapping clothes with one of the bar girls for a laugh. She then had to rush off for some family emergency and he had to wear her dress back to the hotel. Or the night James Lavelle DJ'd for 4 hours during Staffies for about twenty staff after the club closed...that was special!
What is your favourite track so far this year? Will Clarke - 'Big Booty'. Reminds me of being in Ibiza in May just gone as it was being dropped by all the big DJs at every party we went to.
Who should we be watching out for this summer? So many big names at the club over summer but I wouldn’t want to give anything away just yet as I like to save some surprises.
Chinese Laundry September Lineups:
Sept 5th Party Favor
Sept 12th Akuou / Promnite
19th Boss Bass
Sept 26th KLP / Hatch / Bar 9 / Habstrakt
Sept 6th Tommy 4 Seven | Destroy The Machines
Sept 13th John 00 Fleming
27th Surprise International Guest
Sept 20th Will Clarke | MoS Clubbers Spring tour feat. The Only & Komes