Sounds of the underground

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  • Friday, 24 Jul 2015

Coming together: Play for Passion (P4P) is the brainchild of veteran DJ Kumaraza.

SUNDAY evenings and nights at Elevate Kitchen & Bar in Changkat Bukit Bintang have been featuring some off-kilter music and vibes with Play For Passion from 3pm weekly.

It’s been going on for more than eight months now and features a weekly line-up of a spread of DJs, from the new and fresh to the veteran and established, plus a special guest or two along the way.

The brainchild of long-time scene veteran DJ Kumaraza, it’s an event put together in an effort to forge ties between DJs as well as promoting non-mainstream electronic music – “Intelligent Dance Music” or IDM – in Malaysia, and freedom of expression in their performances of non-mainstream music.

“It started in mid-November 2014 when Elevate, having just opened, offered me a Saturday night gig. I told the owner I would take Sundays instead and organise an evening party but I needed six months to build it up and they agreed,” he explained.

“So I came up with a concept called Play for Passion (P4P) dedicated to DJs who play underground music but hardly get to shine due to lack of clubs focusing on these kinds of genre. I thought it would be ideal for DJs because most of them would be off on Sundays.”

It was clearly an initiative by DJs for DJs to support the non-mainstream music concept when the Kuala Lumpur clubbing scene is being dominated by commercial EDM but it was a slow start for Kumaraza.

“As I started the first two weeks I ended up playing a 12-hour set myself as I couldn’t convince my fellow DJs that this concept would work but the owner was impressed with my effort and let me continue,” he said.

Only in the third week help finally arrived from the first batch of DJs who came forward to support his concept.

“This batch is now my regular line-up at P4P and I greatly appreciate the contributions of Alex Martin, Bernie, Trippy DJ, Backslash, Shah Renu, Chris, Mantis, Uzair and Alex to the success of P4P. They are the ones who really kicked off P4P,” Kumaraza said.

Now, after eight months, it’s become pretty much one of the most talked about “off-the-mainstream” Sunday all afternoon and evening parties in Kuala Lumpur with nearly 50 DJs from as young as 18 to as old as 52 having graced the decks.

And February saw the introduction of the monthly Dust & Groove Vinyl sessions promoting the sounds, both old and new, of the classic format that was the foundation of DJing.

“P4P welcomes all DJs who plays their own sounds and it will be heard by a house full of DJs who appreciate the music,” Kumaraza added.

“As we move on we want to give the DJs maximum exposure by promoting their names, recording their sets and uploading them to our podcast (on Mixcloud). We’re also thinking of live streaming in the near future. To join P4P, visit our Facebook page and send us a profile or simply join the event every Sunday. It starts at 3pm at Elevate Changkat,” he said.

Coming up for Play For Passion

SUNDAY (July 26)

Play 4 Passion Presents: Dust & Grooves 6 (SyiokSendiri Sessions)

The monthly edition of vinyl comes back you way this Sunday from 3pm. Vinyl sounds both old and new from Justin James, Jason M, Rohan Phatboy, J-Sun, Bernie, Kumaraza Placebo Effect, Kash and Ray Soo.


Play For Passion Hari Raya KosongKosong

P4P Opens up for a grand Hari Raya special with a feast of both food and back-to-back DJ sessions from the likes of Alex & Uzair, Bernie & J-Sun, Renu & Kash, Backslash & Harley Scott, Kumaraza & Trippy DJ, Ju-C and Jason E, Apak & MRP85, Fyan&Fadd Lee, Alex Martin & DJ Kuma, Mantis & Other Kind.


20-2A, Changkat Bukit Bintang, KL

Free entry but you can call 011-2630 0023 for information and reservations.

DJ Line ups are subject to last minute changes.

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