It was during the NeedlExchange’s TNX MAL party in January that I noticed that the crowd dancing in an industrial warehouse in Northeast D.C. seemed half-composed of New Yorkers.
“This party is a special place,” one New Yorker told me. “It is a gem that I miss now that I no longer live in D.C. When I was thinking of coming to D.C. for MAL Weekend, seeing this party listed made up my mind.” As he spoke, he stood in the middle of a group of other shirtless, dancing New Yorkers. Each one taking turns to lean-in and nod or offer their own praise.
The NeedlExchange (or ‘TNX’) collective was formed in 2013 as a collaboration between popular Washington DJs Tommy Cornelis, Bil Todd, and Baronhawk Poitier. They quickly found success among a growing fan base, even when their work was not on the consciousness of those familiar with the mainstream rotation of queer nightlife in D.C. Their work tends to pop-up at most frequently at queer dance events they hold in undisclosed warehouses in Washington. However, the quality of work has grown their popularity in other cities where they perform (they have been frequently featured at the nationally respected Honcho party in Pittsburgh) and they have won adoration from influential DJ collectives such as San Francisco’s Honey Soundsystem.
This year, TNX welcomed another influential Washington DJ to their collective – Morgan Tepper, popularly known as DJ Lisa Frank. This Saturday night, the collective will throw their annual pride party in an undisclosed warehouse in Northeast D.C. Ahead of that event, Brightest Young Things talked with the collective about their work, their inspirations, and what pride means to them.
Brightest Young Things: A simple question first. Could you describe the type of music that you play in your sets? I ask that because it is different than what you often hear at gay dance parties. I’ve been with friends at great events in other cities where they’ve said “this feels like the NeedlExchange“. But, I have a hard time explaining what that feel of sound is behind “dark, sexy, and great”.
BYT: Can you tell us a little about the arc of your collective? I see that you have a new member and you’re also playing in cities other than D.C.
+ The NeedlExchange (TNX)
+ Jacq JillTickets: http://bit.do/PRIDE179pm – Sunrise
Warehouse Location, NE DC
Martin Audio Sound
· Alcohol available for purchase until 2:30am
· Strictly 21+, please bring your ID
· Cash-only bar and box office – ATM on-site
· Street parking. Please respect the space and each other.