27.03.2010 - timewarp mannheim - techno heaven (review)


Well-Known Member
I had always wanted to go to Timewarp in Mannheim, but it was only this year when finally dates went out well for me. So I took the train from Berne (only 3 hours) and curiously travelled up to Mannheim last Saturday!

We entered TW at around 10:30pm and immediately met up with friends (Ibiza summer people). They had arrived earlier and so they showed us around. We took a walk through the vast area, had a look at every of the 5 dance floors and soon got in the mood to finally start the party. I hadn’t really been out since x-mas and so my clubbing batteries were 100% full (in a way it almost felt like going to the Ibiza openings, only that the weather didn’t really feel like summer yet).

So, before I’ll start the run-down of the night, here’s the official running order of all the floors:

Floor 1:
19:30 – 21:00 steffen baumann
21:00 – 22:30 lexy
22:30 – 00:00 the disco boys
00:00 – 02:00 monika kruse
03:00 – 05:00 chris liebing (incl. change to daylight saving time)
05:00 – 07:00 speedy j
07:00 – 08:00 collabs
08:00 – 09:00 plastikman (video transmission from floor 2)
09:00 – 11:00 felix kröcher

Floor 2:
21:00 – 22:00 seebase
22:00 – 00:00 michel de hey
00:00 – 02:00 ellen alien
03:00 – 07:00 sven väth (incl. change to dst)
07:00 – 08:00 martin buttrich live
08:00 – 09:00 plastikman live
09:00 – 11:00 dubfire
11:00 – 15:00 ricardo villalobos, marco carola & loco dice

Floor 3:
21:00 – 22:30 sasch bbc
22:30 – 00:30 turntablerocker
00:30 – 03:30 tobi Neumann (incl. change to dst)
03:30 – 06:00 ricardo villalobos
06:00 – 08:00 marco carola
08:00 – 10:00 loco dice
10:00 – 11:00 reboot live
11:00 – 13:00 magda

Floor 4:
21:00 – 22:00 blast sl
22:00 – 23:00 stefano libelle
23:00 – 00:30 federico Molinari
00:30 – 02:00 nekas (incl. change to dst)
03:00 – 04.30 dorian paic
04:30 – 06:00 chris tietjen
06:00 – 07:30 robert dietz
07:30 – 09:00 arian
09:00 – 10:30 livio & roby

Floor 5:
22:00 – 23:30 gerd janson
23:30 – 01:30 dixon
01:30 – 04:30 karotte (incl. change to dst)
04:30 – 10:00 laurent garnier (& scan-x live)

The first half hour we spent in floor 3, where the turntablerockers were playing some decent techhouse. Floor 3 was a big hall – although not as huge as floor one and two (which were massive) and had an ok sound quality and stunning visuals in the front (well – every floor had great visual walls anyway!). we knew we would come back to that floor later and so we went into the main hall where floor one and two were located. Yes, two floors in the same massive hall, but no overlapping sound at all (the floors also were separated trough a wall). Michel de hey was playing in floor two. I was happy to see him again, it had been a long time since I heard him play the last time (as a guest of cox in space) and he did a great job, an energetic tech-house set. That was before midnight and it still had a warm up feel to it. The whole venue was not full at all yet.

Then we walked over to floor 5, the pearl of all timewarp floors. It’s definitely the smallest and most beautiful floor of the entire event. It is located in a glassy bowl and was decorated with lots of shiny disco balls hanging from the domed ceiling and attached to the wall behind the dj booth. Check out the pics and vids (I will add them later!). and this floor also has the most clubbing feel to it, while all the other floors feel more like a mega rave. Last but not least, this is also the floor which regularly gets packed and then you have to wait outside for a while until some people are leaving and so there’s room for you and your mates. When we first entered this floor, Dixon was playing. Now Dixon is an artist I have a lot of respect for, I absolutely adore his productions, but have never been lucky enough to see him playing. And how I loved his set! It was quite downtempo and definitely deeeeeep. Aaah! Looking back, his set (or at least what we got of it) was one of the highlights of the night…and it was only just past midnight!!!

So, yes, the party had begun. The whole night passed away very quickly. Part of the whole fun at time warp is that you always wander from floor to floor, stay at a place for a while and then continue…so here’s what I remember from when it was dark outside:

A bit of tobi Neumann in floor 3 and suddenly, at 2am, the change to daylight saving time and it was already 3am. So we went to floor 2 to salute sven väth. He played a long set (4hrs) and was very varied – I remember listening to a piano house riff and me thinking “this wouldn’t have been possible with sven a few years ago”, but in the morning, at around 6am, he got really techy and pounding! And I must say, he’s still in top form. I always think it’s impressive what he’s achieved, not talking only about him but also about cocoon as a label. And with him being already in his mid-40ies, he’s still being one of the revolutionary minds in the business. But enough of praising sven :)

Back to floor 5 and it was already slowing getting bright outside and another legend on the turntables – laurent garnier – just dropping his “man with the red face” and everyone cheering. And another short visit in floor 3 where marco carola was playing. In a way we tried to avoid going to floor 3 too much during the night/early morning, because we knew we would see a lot of these dj’s later on floor 2 (look at the running order and you’ll understand). We still managed to miss martin buttrich’s live performance, which was a pity (but you never catch all of the artists you want anyway at such a festival).

But at least we were back in floor two by 8am (more or less) to catch the live performance of Richie hawtin (plastikman). Weeks before the festival everyone was going mad about this performance and it surely was planned as THE highlight of the whole party, also because they even transmitted the show from floor two over to floor one. Still, everyone and I mean EVERYONE wanted to go into floor 2 go get it really “live”. But at some point, they had to close the gates for a while. Now…speaking about the performance itself – I was massively disappointed. Most of the set was very very downbeat, barely danceable and just weird. I went to see the performance with no expectations at all, but still, the whole hype that had been around and the result just didn’t match…

After plastikman, we went back to floor 5 for a last time that night/morning. It was 9am and floor 5 was only open till 10am. So last chance to get more of monsieur garnier! In daylight! With classics! And also some drum & bass…just the way we know Laurent!!!

At around 10am our bodies gave us a signal we maybe should add FOOD to the system (haha) and so we went for breakfast. And here I might add that, the whole organisation of the event, was really really good IMO. You never had to queue for a long time to get drinks or food and also the toilet situation was fine! Well done timewarp. Also the chill out floor was good stuff. The only thing I don’t really like is the voucher system they have (where you have to buy vouchers and the pay with them), but I understand why they’re doing it.

After a short breakfast, we just made it to get the last bit of reboot’s live performance in floor 3. of course he trew caminando…nice memories from 2009! So it was already mid-morning, but the festival was still very very busy. I can’t really say at what time it was most busy, I guess between 4am and 10am, but it was never too crowded generally! (someone told me it was a bit less busy than last year, but I don’t know it that’s true, the pre-sale was sold out for example)

And then, from 11am onwards, there was just floor 2 for us. Ricardo villalobos vs. marco carola vs. loco dice. Great atmosphere. Afterhour feeling. Cracking music. And funny situation and memories. And at a certain point, in a strange twist of events, we suddenly got some wristbands and wooosh – two minutes later we were up on the stage, dancing next to the dj booth were above three mentioned guys were having a lot of fun and sven (wearing his turban), dubfire (another one I unfortunately missed) and Richie etc. having even more fun. That was sometime between 1pm and 2:30pm and I remember us looking down at the far end of the hall, looking at the hordes of people still going at it full power and thinking “wow, this is impressive, 2pm and still THAT many people going strong!”.

I don’t know if they stopped the music at exactly 3pm, because we didn’t stay till the very end. But I do know, there was an afterhour at a club in Mannheim with marco carola and loco dice playing.

Bottom line – if you don’t have the cash to travel over to Miami for the winter music conference, then definitely go to timewarp Mannheim. At 50€ entrance fee (and drinks at half of the prices compared to ibiza), you get 18hrs of the best electronic music around. Apart of the closing parties in Ibiza and the Streetparade in Zurich in August, which I recommend to any of you, this is the best electronic music festival I’ve ever been to and it definitely does get you in the mood for another summer full of mindblowing tunes…!!!!!
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wicked review , does sound amazing. they organise coach trips from london to go , ive always been tempted but dont think i can deal with the coach journey there n back