With our second weekend back on the scene stealing much of our time, we find ourselves looking back on the previous one & the days around it, as London’s Gay Pride looks set to dominate our latest That Was The Week That Was report, we hitting the ground running, with more activity on one week than we had for a sizeable chunk of June. So let’s no delay you anymore as we reflect on what was most definitely a purple patch period of partying.
Thursday’s of late have certainly been proving to have become the start of the weekend for many, it being no exception for us this week, as we headed down to Room Service for the WE “Heroes” pre-party, also taking in another pre-party at the same time, Room Service’s at Circa to be exact. And finding ourselves back in our feet meant we were also in review mode, capturing the whole evening in our reflection, “Pitron Posse Packs A Punch”, which kind of says it all, so worth look if you haven’t or another if you have, at http://discomatt.com/web/2011/07/reviews-pitron-posse-pack-a-punch-room-service-we-heroes-pre-party-thursday-30th-june-bite-size-review/, while the night marked the first of our march towards a Pride weekend in London that we won’t forget. With both Steve Pitron & Kris Di Angelis treating us to a superb soundtrack of towering tunes, Jodie Harsh & her team certainly know how to throw a prolific party and this time was no different, while news of the Ibiza launch, which went down a storm, was the icing on a resplendent Room Service cake. Watch out for another pre-party this coming Thursday (14th July), as they entertain Brazilian bash Casa Latina & keep checking http://clubroomservice.com for the new look website coming your way.
Part of the reason why Thursday’s seem to have become the new Friday’s again is due to Gigolo attracting more & more people out into Soho, David & L.a. Hart having established this gathering in response to the success of Room Service, pitching their party against the former that has since seen the two sit as comfortable bedfellows among a scene circuit that sees many jumping between the two before laying their hat on one or the other. Throwing a Pride pre-party of their own, picking on Peyton to head up this magnificent meet, was just the attraction they needed, a packed out Lo-Profile reflecting on one of the best Gigolo’s yet, Messrs English & Fisher sorting the sounds spectacularly, Tony turning up the musical heat with an inspired & uplifting set, while Gutterslut guy Nick gave Gigolo that East London edge that played into the hands of the Hoxton lot that love his grooves, With their themed nights continuing, the Hart boys turn out another treat this week, as Terry Vietheer & Jamie Head “Go To It”, more details on this & all Gigolo gatherings available at http://gigolodisco.com.
Moving to Friday and we found ourselves back in Soho for the third night in a row, this time taking in a splendid set from new(ish) boy in town, Brazilian beaut Junior Moura sorting the sounds at Profile Bar, while we engrossed in plenty of socialising with Steve Pitron, Naomi Ruiz & co, an exceptional evening of fun & frivolity ensuing with floods or familiar faces aplenty swinging by to say hi, while we were in our own floods of hysterical laughter at Steve’s naughty antics. And whilst there were pre-pride parties aplenty across Soho & Vauxhall & elsewhere, the mood was very much more Brazilian at both Profile & Lo-Profile, a special “Carioca” inspired Society tempting us downstairs, the delectable DouGuim setting this social splendour alight, while fellow countryman Leandro Kloppel continued to fly the Brazilian flag of banging beats. But Profile was enough for us, Mr Pitron pushing our delicate iron lung to its limits, a planned drop-in on Onyx shelved in favour of a respite, indeed with , top notch D.J’s on duty every Friday & Saturday, with one of the friendliest bar teams we know, plus a food offer to rival many eateries in town, as well as 2 4 1 drinks offers, a Sunday lunch that is unbeatable value, as well as their Tuesday “Steak Night”, this is one bar you simply have to swing by soon, full & further details out at http://profilesoho.com.
Onto Saturday and London Pride 2011 was in full swing by the time we arrived at Soho Square about 4 p.m., the parade over & done with, the main stage at Trafalgar Sq having attracted considerable numbers, while the streets of Soho were crammed with revellers, our choice to head for The Fire Dance Stage & the heavenly hospitality of Craig Elder, Tom Fuller & the rest of The Orange Group team. And with a succession of superb back-to-back sets, as well as two P.A. performances, the second from Shawnee Taylor no less, belting out “Stronger” then “Live Your Life”, we played witness to one of the best square Pride parties we had seen, our review “Exciting The Iron Lung”, reflecting just how amazing it was, so worth a look at to http://discomatt.com/web/2011/07/reviews-exciting-the-iron-lung-london-gay-pride-2011-the-fire-dance-stage-saturday-2nd-july-full-size-review/.
As The Pride Saturday for many continued in the streets of Soho, all eyes were pointing toward WE “Heroes” at The Coronet, although we preceded our planned trip there with a romp around Barcode Vauxhall, a night that became a huge part of the purple patch period or partying that we deluded to, the phrase of the weekend becoming “I WANT MY PORRIDGE”, which was cause for much hilarity, screaming, shouting & running (you had to be there!), our third review of this wonderful weekend give you a Bite Size idea of our antics on Albert Embankment, out at http://discomatt.com/web/2011/07/reviews-i-want-my-porridge-junior-moura-plays-profile-barcode-friday-1st-saturday-2nd-july-bite-size-review/, also combining our previous nights shenanigans with Steve at Profile Bar. However, whilst the world & his wife went to WE, we were so tired out from mummy bear chasing goldilocks, we had to return home & rest for the following morning, instead sending our “Secret Squirrel” undercover reviewer into the thick of the “Heroes” action, our caped crusader reporting back on what proved to be a resounding success, not quite the sensation of “Candy”, but by far the largest party of the weekend, Coronet filled to capacity, Pagano & Carlos Gallardo apparently stand-out as was Shawnee Taylor’s P.A. performance. But don’t take our word for it, check out over “Secret Squirrel’s” take on this WE wonder at http://discomatt.com/web/2011/07/reviews-pumpimg-pride-party-we-heroes-saturday-2nd-july-bite-size-review/, while WE will be back for more this August Bank holiday, the place to watch for more info as it breaks being http://wepartylondon.com.
So Sunday dawned and there was now only one place to be, all roads once again leading to Beyond, who had joined forces with barcode for a second time, cresting another super sized event, this one aptly called “Super Pride”, it turning out to be just that. And while we didn’t grace its doors till turned 7 a.m., it seemed everyone had got their bright & early as Area & the extended outside space was absolutely rammed, each of the three rooms of the traditional beyond side of this super sized space buzzing with brilliant beats, the likes of The Oli, Fat Tony, Paul Christian David Jimenez & Gonzalo Rivas doing the business. But, as usual, it was the main room that stole the show for us, first Mikey D delighting us with scores of superb sounds, although it was Steve Pitron that sent us over the top and into floods of emotions, a real tear jerking moment towards 10 a.m. requiring us to seriously get a grip as what we were witnessing in this, probably our best Beyond of the year yet (and there have been loads!!), just the thought that we were there but were so close to not have been so, enough to erupt our emotions, although the string of Steve sounds did their own job of pushing over the edge, so scintillating was his set. Indeed with such a lot to say, we laid down our first Full Size review n over two months and for good reason, one which you can catch at http://discomatt.com/web/2011/07/reviews-rapturous-return-erupts-emotions-beyond-super-pride-sunday-3rd-july-full-size-review/, while Beyond stretches its magic far & wide, a world tour which saw them feature on the La Demence cruise, continuing this Saturday in Paris, with Brazil, Spain & Greece still to come. Plus they are on the radio each Sunday morning, then pushing the envelope each week in Area, http://jonny-m.co.uk/beyond, the site to keep your eyes peeled for news on this brilliant brand.
While our weekend was drawn to a premature end, having over pushed those still healing bones, it was far from it for many others, first Later at Fire with its “Funfair” theme bringing out the alfresco adorer, while so many who had been partying since Friday, continued unabated right through till the early evening when Booster took over. Naturally S.L.A.G.S/Chill-out had their say too, the sun shining enough for the famed “Grassy Knoll” to fill out, while a much better (funny that!) Dame Edna Experience made it an entertaining early evening, having got plenty of stick for missing the Pride main stage the previous day. Back to Booster and it clearly benefitted from the Pride effect the roll from WE to Beyond, to Later & then to Romain Lopez’s lure, Orange then carrying a near capacity Fire main room deep into Monday morning & the raptures of RAW. With Steven Sharp’s club night seemingly riding a never-ending wave crest at the moment, it was a shame our legs couldn’t carry us there, but August Bank Holiday will be a must, if we don’t make it before, more details of Orange & other gay parties at Fire available at http://fireclub.co.uk/gayparties.
Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday kind of took a hit following such a huge weekend, the usual hangouts reporting quieter numbers than usual, even a student filled Popcorn not quite the same as previous weeks, our “Secret Squirrel” having left early as it really wasn’t for him.Tuesday has always been a bit of a dead duck and this week was no exception, although it dawned with a Pride special Open at Fire, very much giving all those scene workers & others who couldn’t party across the weekend, the opportunity to do so, numbers filtering across for Popcorn and whilst never busy, it did better than usual. As for Tuesday night, it seems that “Candy Boys” at Candy Bar keeps sticking at it, while Mr Ryder’s strip shows pulled in a plume of punters. As for Wednesday’s, with no Industri, Barcode having closed its doors the previous week, Shinky Shonky at Ku-Bar & new(ish) night, Everything Taboo at Shadow Lounge, to hit with retro style sounds & clubbing, while Patrick Lilley’s Work, having found new residency at Fire in Vauxhall continues to pull in the people of colour & their admirers. Useful websites for these outings include http://popcorn-heaven.com, http://ku-bar.co.uk, http://eaglelondon.com, http://thehadowlounge.co.uk & http://patricklilley.com.
Now to some news and to The Shadow Lounge first, which closes its doors this weekend (Sun 17th July), but not before a party to wave farewell to the old look of the venue. Yes, don’t panic folks, it’s not closing for good, but for a serious make-over, we being told it’s a little more than the nip & tuck we thought it was, the builders having already started this week, in places away from prying eyes, although it seems eyes have been straying onto those builders bums & other bulges (if you know what we mean!!). As for Saturday, Andrew Elmore see’s everyone off with stacks of latest hits, floor fillers & reams of remixes, while apparently, if you fancy the look of a piece of furniture & can carry it home, tables & all seem to be up for grabs and free at that. With their website getting a new look too, keep your eyes peeled at http://thehadowlounge.co.uk for that all important detail regarding the re-opening.
To another Soho institution that has closed for good. Barcode having been sold to the highest bidder, in this case Freedom, who, rumour has it, will be turning this trendsetter of a venue spot into a private members club, (boo hoo!!), we suspect for our breeder brethren to bask within. And having not been able to give Barcode a fond farewell, the way the transition from one owner to another was handled being a bit cock eyed to be honest, and given the 15 glorious years Barcode Soho has been not just contributing to, but making the scene a much stronger place, it was a crying shame that we couldn’t celebrate its achievements with a right royal send off. However, with Barcode Vauxhall still going, we won’t say strong, but like its former sister, playing a vital role in the gay bar/clubbing scene, this Saturday (16th July), marks its 5th Anniversary, so good reason to celebrate. We will be giving it a mention in our upcoming Best Bites & Short Shouts weekend newsletter, so watch out for that, while details on happenings on Albert Embankment can be found at http://bar-code.co.uk.
So, as we begin to round-up our weekly report, it’s time for our moment, track & tweet of the week, although having been so busy, we are finding it difficult to choose our favourite moment as there were so many, from the raptures of Room Service, the delights of The Dance Stage & the bravado of Barcode. But whilst the phrase is an easy one, “I WANT MY PORRIDGE” going down in legendary history, while our numerous “iron lung” incidents also proving classical, the moment has to go to Beyond when two tracks caught us with our emotional pants down, “Starry Eyed” & then “You’ve Got The Love” leaving us with eyes flooding & poor pal Andrea looking really worried. It was real emotion alright & many thoughts were flowing over us, but it is only Steve (& possibly Mikey) that can do that to us.
As for our track of the week, as hefty those two were, our vote simply has to go to the incredible “Pressure” which was with us pretty much every step of the way this week. With a number of versions knocking around, it is the original version by Nadia Ali, Starkillers & Alex Kenji that gets our vote, having been played at Room Service, Profile, Barcode & Beyond. No so much a dancefloor smash, its melodic rhythms & those sultry vocals very much hit the mark & while it has missed our “Summer Scorcher” list, will definitely be an “Autumn Anthem” and fighting for a top ten position in our year end chart which looks like being the most hotly contested of any so far. Check this terrific track out in full 6 minute glory at http://youtube.com/watch?v=NKfcg85fhTU.
To our tweet of the week and after trawling through the 45 live Nibble Sized review posts we popped onto our Twitter page, the one that just about stands out over some real gems is one we sent to someone else (we won’t say who but you can probably guess), it stating simply “…oh!! The iron lung!! What are you doing to us? I WANT MY PORRIDGE!!…” this painting a magical picture of a truly memorable weekend that we will remember, probably for ever. Now, as if we need to remind you, if you want to catch our live commentaries this coming weekend (Sat 16th & Sun 17th July) at Casa Latina & Lovebox, then log onto http://twitter.com/discomatt, as we could have a repeat performance of Pride weekend on our hands.
Now, we finish with our usual reminder saying that you that that if you want us to shout out for your favourite bar, club or event that rocked & rolled in the coming week, then link into us via our main Facebook page at http://facebook.com/discomattlondon and plaster our wall with your details or then drop us a line now at email@example.com. As we have hinted towards, this weekend will see us down at for Casa Latina & the on Sunday we will be across at Victoria Park for Lovebox, but will be back before then, rounding up the seven days from 8th to 13th July, so watch out for that. (DISCO MATT)