Friday 17th November: Strawberry Fields, VIC
Saturday 18th November: Sugar, Adelaide
Sunday 19th November: Pickle @ Bar Rochford, Canberra
Friday 24th November: Friendly Potential @ Whammy Bar, Auckland NZ
Saturday 25th November: Output Festival, Sydney (Day)
Saturday 25th November: Animals Dancing, Melbourne (Night)
Optimo are renowned for bringing an obscure sound to the forefront of the dance scene. With 20 years of DJing experience between them, the duo comprise of Scotsmen Twitch and Jonnie Wilkes, and it was evident from their 1997 inception that they weren’t your average DJ. Before the techno and before Optimo, both artists would play different styles which included electro, noisy rock, reggae, funk, jazz and more.
One of Optimo’s greatest achievements is establishing the club night Optimo (Espacio) which was based in Glasgow. The night reigned for over a decade and had an anything goes policy which proved to be a huge success. Optimo (Espacio) featured artists such as LCD Soundsystem, Atom Heart, Green Velvet, Luciano, Four Tet, Justus Kohncke. and even bands like Franz Ferdinand evolved from the Optimo dancefloor.
Individually both members have highly active careers too, JG Wilkes records and remixes as Naum Gabo with his friend James Savage, and JD Twitch does so under his own name, and combined they have remixed some of the world’s most credible acts including Seun Kuti, Franz Ferdinand, Factory Floor, Django Django, Neon Indian, Florence & The Machine, Manic Street Preachers, Blondes, The Hundred In The Hands Ford & Lopatin, Hot Chip, Psychonauts, Simian Mobile Disco and Snow Patrol.
Watch Optimo’s Boiler Room Glasgow DJ Set
Optimo are the duo JD Twitch and JG Wilkes. They each have over 20 years DJ-ing experience and in the last decade have become both renowned and highly respected for their memorable and ecstatic deejay sets. Twitch and Wilkes exhibit a unique disregard for genres and musical restrictions in their craft, creating a nightclub experience that strikes out into territories far beyond the accepted boundaries of club music.
The duo are responsible for the nightclub Optimo (Espacio) which ran from November 1997 until April 2010. Optimo sat at the very epicentre of the Scottish Clubbing consciousness in its weekly residency in the Sub Club and is widely regarded as one of the most important and ground-breaking clubs of the past 10 years (at one point earning them the prestigious title of Mixmag’s Club of the Year).
Optimo first came to international recognition with the release of How to Kill The Dj (part 2) in 2004. This mix, and the critical acclaim that followed, would catapult the duo onto the international gigging circuit. The next few years would see them travel across the world taking the Optimo party aesthetic to England, Ireland, Iceland, Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Estonia, Lithuania, Portugal, France, Spain, Holland, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Italy, Russia, Greece, Bratislava, Czech Republic, Serbia, Croatia, USA, Canada, Brazil, South Africa, Japan and Australia.
Subsequent mix releases illustrated their exceptional maverick determination, raising the benchmark for what is expected from a dj mix and what musical ingredients could be used to create it. These titles include – Psyche-Out (Eskimo Recordings), 20 Years Underground (Soma), Walkabout (Endless Flight), In Order To Edit (R&S), Sleepwalk (Domino Recordings) and culminated most recently with a tour-de-force mix for the Fabric Series with Fabric 52 – Optimo (Espacio).
The Fabric 52 compilation underlines Optimo’s reputation as taste-makers, achieved through their shared passion for clubbing and their encyclopedic knowledge of music. However it also illustrates their skill in assembling sounds from the past and present to create an experience that is definitively futuristic in spirit.
Following this high-point the Optimo team are moving ever forwards, restless for new challenges. Twitch mixed the corner-stone compilation from fellow local label Glasgow Underground for their ‘Underground Sound Of Glasgow’ release, showcasing the best in new electronic music sprouting from the incredibly fertile electronic musicscene of Optimo’s home town. The Optimo duo debuted on the famed Boiler Room mix series in Dec 2012 with a B2B set alongside innovative Germany techno artist Move D (also one half of Deep Space Network).
Further opportunities to hear the Optimo sound can be found on the highly respected RinseFM station where Optimo take to the internet radio waves on the second mondayof every month, between midnight and 2am, providing a topical and up to the minute glimpse into the head-messing Optimo universe. The final essential ingredient to the Optimo success is of course the people. Each Optimo set is different, teased out of the dynamics of a singular group of people – whither it be a tiny basement sweat-box, the main room of a super club or a thousand people in a field – and everything they do springs from the spirit of the crowd and the rhythm of the moment. It is the unique enthusiasm of each crowd, where ever they go, that gives them inspiration – and feeds the joy in what they do.
These are the reasons Optimo have become two of the UK’s busiest and best loved DJ’s. As Twitch and Wilkes say themselves, We Love Your Ears!