Archive for December 2011
Well what a year it has been, the highs the lows, the ups the downs, the rollercoaster rides & the emotional tears of joy, the two main protagonists being the awesome afterhours that is Beyond together with one of its most prolific players. So, it seemed wholly appropriate to deliver our final review rapture of 2011 looking at the last two events from earlier this month, wrapping them into one super size reflection and also capturing plenty of other people & players that made up this brilliant Beyond brace.
We have to be completely honest when we say that we are fast running out of superlatives to describe what has undoubtedly become our favourite clubbing brand of all time, one that this year celebrated its 10th year in operation, while it leaves behind a 2011 that has seen a score or more of majestic meets leave an indelible impression & mark in our minds, mounds of magical memories, a flock of fabulous folks and the most magnificent music making from a myriad of maestro’s that have elevated this awesome afterhours from iconic to legendary status in our clubbing catalogue. And while 2011 has seen the creation of new chapters in the brilliant book, intrepid international expeditions to France, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Spain & South Africa casting our clubbing net much further than ever before, this including barnstorming brands in their own backyard’s, Berghain, Red & Blue, Delice, La Demence, & Muccassassina, in admitting that all these proved dynamic draws, like the strap line that is & forever will be associated the club in question & review here, all roads inevitably led back to just one place. But you could be forgiven that that place may have meant, Lovechild or SuperMartXe, Gigolo or Room Service, Hard On! or Meat, all which played out prolifically in our own backyard, the capital’s clubbing circuit, it could only be that one place we have hinted to that you stand it out from this considerable crowd of clubs and by a country mile at that.
Beyond is, undoubtedly, a club & brand that has re-written our clubbing history books, having knocked the previous pretender to our top dog crown, Trade, right off its powerful pedestal, this so called mothership of clubbing having dominated our first few years circulating the capitals scene on arriving from our home, South Africa all too many years ago, although has pretty much paled in comparison to the contender that has not only wrestled our pinnacle place out of Trade’s hands, but has gripped it tightly for virtually the whole of the ten years it has been wooing & wowing us. And we say with unashamed bravado that Beyond touches our minds & souls literally every day of our existence, we carry it in our pocket, we see it on our phone, we hear its music in our ears, but moreover than that, we look forward to Sunday mornings with both extreme excitement & those bubbling butterflies in our stomach that make the amazing afterhours our brilliant best. But, we are not alone in this accolade, as scene websites & publications have lauded loads of awards on this captivating club, while 2011 alone has seen the brand spread it wonderful word internationally too, tours of Paris, Brussels, Amsterdam & Ibiza among a host of others, that along with being beamed out to the wider world on the radio, touching all six continents of this gigantic globe.
So, without a doubt, it has been a yardstick year for Beyond, we can counting ourselves so lucky to have been a part of this prolific picture, we ourselves having showered the club with compliments, posts, reviews, reports & recommendations unparalleled with any other. And with all that in mind, couldn’t think of a better brand or choice to devote our final resplendent clubbing reflection of 2011 to, two happenings earlier this month our focus, the first marking our return to the scene after a six week ill health absence, the club itself rolling out as the official afterparty for WE’s “Disco” event, meaning that as we arrived at just turned 6.30 a.m., the queue was still substantial, although being superbly managed as usual by Tom Fuller, we pleased as punch to see him back at Beyond after, like us, as few weeks and doing what he does best. But it was the calls from Steve Pitron that were beckoning us in, the man eager to catch a few moments with us before his set start in the main room at 7 a.m. out arrival in the chapel space also greeted by the brilliant Bel & a handful of the Brazilian bunch with whom we have regularly rubbed shoulders with during the year.
With Steve off into the yet unopened main room to prepare for his performance, Bel in tow, we sought some pre-rollercoaster ride solace in the terrace room, finding Jamie Hammond spinning a characterful collection of upfront & euphoric house that was certainly hitting the mark, while from our spot we were in full view of the masses of ex WE party goers, many of whom had clearly, like us, made Beyond their post Coronet destination, not least Jamie Head, Fat Tony & Peyton, all of whom took a moment to say their hello’s before disappearing into the considerable crowd that was anticipating the opening of the main arena at Area. But we didn’t have to wait that long, the stampede for a special space akin to a buffalo migration across the African plains, we dashing to demarcate our spot right down to (yes you guessed it) the left of the D.J. booth, although we hardly needed to rush, as our approaching pal Sophie Pearson, had done the job just perfectly, marking out our space with red tape (naturally imaginary), just as we had planned from a few days earlier, a whole gathering of the remaining Brazilian bunch making us feel right at home once more, it feeling mere days rather than weeks we had been away from this heavenly & hallowed clubbing turf.
Now we were ready to jump onto the terrific train of tunes that would surely make up the impending rollercoaster ride of rapture, Steve starting as he meant to go on with the brilliant “You Better”, the room packed to the rafters before the track had ended. And with Steve’s Celso now captivating our company, the podiums already full with extrovert revellers, the lighting in the hands of the superb Smalls responding to Mr Pitron’s playlist perfectly, his second selection was equally as good as the first, “Music In My Soul” sending us into a spectacular spin on our spot, Brazilian boy Luis joining us in our joviality. But even these two tremendous tracks were set to be eclipsed by the next which, to this day, is simply known as “Track 3”, yet one which blew us away, we being left breathless by its brilliance, as like “Offshore” it was definitely joyful tear material, not to mention dripping with destroying qualities that have become nearly as much as an infamous as those rollercoaster rides we find ourselves on. With Steve now firmly in the zone, the new tracks kept coming, our iron lung hardly being able to cope, our excitement reaching such heights that we were close on wetting ourselves, not just due to the mesmeric music our maestro was masterminding, but because we daren’t leave our spot for the much needed toilet break for fear of missing out on even a second of Steve’s scintillating set.
With our much needed visit done, it was back into the groove in an instant, the tremendous tracks, one after the other sending us into a “Doing The Disco Matt” frenzy, Bel with her tweeting & Sophie with her whistling all adding to the awesome atmosphere, even the eye catching Eduardo from the Brazilian bunch wanting a piece of our dance delirium, dragging us off our spot and into his path, although we certainly weren’t complaining. Mind you, it wasn’t long before we had reassumed our usual position, not least due to the final Steve selection in a simply scintillating two hours of hypnotic house, “Bitch Lady” sending us wild as well as into a fit of hysterical laughter, not least due to the hidden meaning of the track and one we knew Mr Pitron had picked on purpose. Yet, there was going to be much more hilarity to come from the morning, Steve now next to us and egging both Bel & Sophie’s tweets & whistles the frolicking threesome cornering us on our spot with their playful taunting & tickles and all this while The Sharp Boys took over where Steve had left off, classics like “Put Em High” intermixed with latest hits, both Geroge & Stephen on fantastic form and hitting our magnificent mark with their masterful music machinations. But our morning, while pretty advanced by this stage was not yet over, our usual retreat into the terrace for a meet up with Tom finding Fat Tony tearing up the place with tons of terrific tunes, his captive audience clearly lapping up every tasty morsel with gusto.
However, it would be in the company of Mr Fuller that we would see out our resplendent return to Beyond, although not before a string of hilarious moments, kicked off with a “Kitty” lookalike female standing near us next to the bar, Tom remarking that she looked more like Bagpuss, while the usual line of gorgeous guys kept heading in Mr Fuller’s direction, each occasion prompting us to carry out the customary check for a hip hugging line. And with it never ceasing to surprise us what a draw our magnificent mate was (indeed is) to these delectable dudes, we continued to be aghast as a whole succession gratefully agreed to pose in front of the camera with which Tom had thrusted in our direction, we acting like his personal David Bailey but loving every minute of it. But a step outside would be the signal we needed to call a halt to this humongous happening, although not before falling into the tracks of the adorable Andrea, whom we had lost in the first few wonderment moments of WE and had hardly set foot on her since, missing her completely during Steve’s set, meaning she made up for lost time in an instant with his hysterical quips that that included “…where the f*** were you?!?!…” & “…you can f*** right off yaaaah!!!!…” leaving us wanting more, she soon dragging us right back to our main room spot, Alan K now in charge of the tunes. So, with a calling cry over the D.J. booth, he lauded the most magnificent multi mixed version of “Release Me” on us, he clearly pleased as punch to see us back soaking up his set, we equally as chuffed to have him back at Beyond too, the icing on our cake being a session up next to the main room man, seeing him in amazing action.
So that was the first of our brace of Beyond’s, we only needing to fast forward a week to find ourselves back on our spot in the club’s main room, back being an appropriate word as we couldn’t have been happier to see Mikey D at the decks, our short absence nothing compared to his, although in an instant it felt like he hadn’t been away at all, a glorious mix of tougher tech tunes intermixed with dancefloor delights, “You Better”, “Souk” & “Pressure” among them, while a look in our direction & then a quick chat over the booth confirming that we were nibble size tweeting, made both of us feel right at home. Mind you the flood of familiar faces were doing to trick too, the likes of Jonny M, Minty, Terry Bryan &, of course Tom Fuller all helping, the delectable Dorin also doing his bit with a huge hug & kiss, the previous days upset caused by a certain individual fizzling out of our minds, our thoughts now firmly on the task in hand, having a terrific time. And with Smalls in place & Mikey masterminding mounds of majestic music moments, we knew that Beyond was once again the place to be, a place that had served us so well for the whole of the year, a captivating constant in our lives that made everything else all the more worthwhile.
However, the morning was set to go from strength to strength, as the arrival of two otter constants in our lives Steve & Celso would find us hitting our gyratingly terrific top gear, this after a captivating catch-up with Steve Sharp & more of those friendly & familiar faces passing us by, Liz Dowling, Severino & Sylvester among them, while Tom continued to provide plenty of enthralling entertainment as he pulled the boys, doing a roaring trade with Fire’s re-opening party tickets. But we were D.J. booth bound, Steve wanting us to be part of his arrival & reunion rejoicing with his back-to-back pal of a D.J. partner, our excitement levels now at fever pitch as we prepared to be once again destroyed in a pool of emotional yet joyful tears, although with the magical moments we were spending in our lofty position getting a little too much, that along with Mr Pitron’s playful tickling pranks, we quickly retired to our spot to succumb to the second stormer of a set. And the first flood of tears hit home pretty much instantaneously, those trademark stares from our fabulous friend over the booth in our direction starting us off, then the addition of three fingers being held aloft, clearly indicating that “Track 3” was being lined up, but not just that, as the third track in his set showing, a gorgeous gesture that erupted our emotions effortlessly.
Now we were In Steve Pitron seventh heaven again, Celso in close quarters, Bel by our side, the Brazilian bunch occupying our area & Mikey enjoying a post performance Beyond boogie within eyeshot, our delightful D.J. clearly also enjoying every second, his smiling looks across with the choosing of every track saying it all, while a sense that we were about to be, in our pals own words “…destroyed…” by his dance delectations, was sweeping over us. And as it turned out, our feelings were not lying to us, first “Music In My Soul” then “Catch You” sending us spinning yet also ravaged with emotion, Bel instigating her own infamous microphone moves to the latter, while Tom Fuller was doing his best to avert our attention away from the amazing atmosphere now apparent, calls for “Get A Room” well placed as a cute young thing was burying himself in our friends face. But the terrific tunes kept coming, “You Better”, “Live Your Dreams” & “levels” among them, although quite uncharacteristically, Tom was drawing us away from this prolific Pitron performance, our absence for the short few minutes it was, ringing alarm bells in our head, our arrival back on our spot evidence that Steve had wondered where we had gone.
Back in our rightful place, we were soon savouring yet more scoops of superb Steve sounds, although with Bel now with her beautiful Brazilian beau, Tom flirting with his young Brazilian boy and even Luis having his turn with a passing hunk, it was clear that more than just romance was in the air, we craving for our own slice of the action, albeit that we had the music to once again fall in love with. And with Beyond at full tilt, Elektra Paris & her drop dead gorgeous go-go’s atop the podiums, the Area lighting & effects sparking in the Sunday morning spotlight of a showing, Mauricio Ortiz also passing by to say hello, it was not only the music we were in love with, although with the second week in a row seeing Steve pull “Bitch Lady” out of his musical bag of tricks, we realised that clubbing & dancing doesn’t get better than this, a remark we have made on many occasion about beyond & about the pitch perfect Pitron performances we have been privileged to be part of, this one no exception. Yet with Steve’s set over, it was a case of continuing our clubbing traditions in this awesome afterhours, our catch up with Tom over post Steve set drinks, followed by a return to our spot and the savouring of an Alan K performance that once again included an colossal multi mixed compilation of “Release Me”, we witnessing this one right next to the man himself, once more up in our select & sort after spot, proved a huge highlight among a mound of many more at this second scintillating session in a week, this awesome afterhours delivering to the degree that other clubs can only dream of.
So in rounding off this lengthy look at the legend of a club that is Beyond, while our reflection on this breathtaking brace of brilliances was the carrot for us to deliver this in-depth delectation, the truth of the matter is that we need little or no reason to orate about this awesome afterhours as we do, much of what we have already said proving just what an outstanding club this is, not just in comparison to others on the capitals clubbing circuit, but right across the world. From the lighting, to the effects, from the atmosphere to the energy and from the people to the players, we can say with total conviction that Beyond tops any other clubbing brand we know, including both those of today & of yesterday, a ten year triumph that has ridden the most wonderful wave crest for the whole of this exceptional existence. And when we look at the players that have graced its decks over the years, whether guests or residents, it reads like the most magnificent who’s who of the gay clubbing D.J. scene, many of whom we are so fortunate to call friends, some close and one very close. So it is to those dynamic D.J.’s that we dedicate this final review of Beyond for 2011, indeed the final posting on our site for this year, as it is these D.J.’s, over & above all the familiar faces we see every time we visit the club, that spin our wonderful world around with the magnificent music, meaning we are sure that, within the next few hours when the club steps into the first spotlight of 2012, we will be right there with that close D.J. pal, no doubt on the rapturous rollercoaster ride. (DISCO MATT)
With the social soiree scene mover & shaker of 2011 starting the New Year as it means to go on, Disco Matt takes a last minute look over the contribution that brilliant brand Gigolo will be making when it combines with Salvation at Café De Paris, this very important promotions team hosting the VIP area & balcony.
When it launched to an adoring audience back in March this year, superb social soirée splendour Gigolo raised more than just eyebrows, the club quickly attracting a fervent following not to mention helping to make Thursday nights the clubbing hot date in the capitals clubbing circuit diary, starting the weekend a night earlier than many other folks, the hip & hop thing to do in the hands of both this & competitor brand, Room Service. Indeed, while some saw Gigolo as just that, competition for its nemesis, what it rather proved was a penchant for partying and both clubs ended up relatively comfortable bedfellows, until, with little or no notice, Gigolo fell off our radar, having lost its seat at home Lo-Profile on Wardour St, rumours rife of brand battles (not again!) forcing promoters David & L.a. Hart to withdraw. However, with colossal calling cries for its return, literally the day after, ringing in their ears, it was just a question of when as opposed to if that Gigolo would be back, its “Cumback” event earlier this month paving the way for a start to the New Year in creative combination with another brilliant brand, hence Gigolo Meets Salvation was born.
Always having served up lashings of style & sophistication matched with sexual seduction, the marriage of both Gigolo & Salvation is one that ties a tremendous knot between the two, like the bedfellow situation we mentioned before, this another example of just how well Gigolo sits with its clubbing compatriots, the brand David & L.a. have built, now sitting on pretty firm foundations in terms of both appeal & draw. So, joining forces with a club such as Salvation seems to be a win win situation, both for the two teams involved as well as the capital’s clubbers and while comparisons to another connection over in Elephant & Castle will undoubtedly be drawn, Gigolo seems to have made a pretty good decision in laying its hat at Salvation’s doors, not least that the style & sophistication that both ooze, should sit very prettily together, host venue Café De Paris the perfect place for Gigolo to flaunt its considerable wares, while we are sure that exceptional lens of David & his ShootMeUp credentials will be working overtime to capture every inch of the incredible images that will surely be abundant in leaps & bounds come tomorrow night.
So, the photography aside, what is Gigolo bringing to the Salvation NYD party table & what the deal on access to their, VIP area, or what we would prefer to call it, the very impressive part of proceedings? Well, having spoken with L.a. about their contribution to this prolifc party, he went into lengthy detail (we love a bit of length) on what to expect, not least “…a full blown decadent disco orgy with London’s hottest & sexiest men…” we attempting to cool the heat under our collar when he went on to say that “…Gigolo’s room will be hosted by porn star Issac Jones and a hot load of gay porn star meat courtesy of UK Naked Men & Butch Dixon…” and having seen them in action for the brand before, you will definitely want to get your slice of this sex pit of porn-tastic play, not least the opportunity of getting snapped with your pick for the stars of this Salvation sideshow, although to be fair to Gigolo, it will hardly need to steal Salvation’s spotlight to make a splash, rather compliment the cavorting in the creative clubbing combo. But no Gigolo gathering would be complete without mounds of majestic music and what better a person to fulfil that role that the cute but commandingly capable Zach Burns, our protégé player of 2011 that saw him as the star turn at Gigolo’s launch, he being a feature ever since, not least at the last “Cumback” event when he nailed a simply stunning set that had even our weary WE & Beyond worn legs doing the Disco Matt magnificently. With a bag brimming with brilliant beats, Mr Burns has also treated us to a taster of the tons of terrific tunes he will surely turn out tomorrow, his podcast pressing at http://soundcloud.com/djzachburns/dj-zach-burns-gigolo-salvation an absolute must listen as well as addition to your compilation collection and one we love from minute one to seventy seven, so sure you will too, along with his Sunday set at Salvation, Gigolo style, tomorrow.
Well, need we say more, apart from run over the dynamic detail of this prolific party, Gigolo taking its place by Salvation’s side tomorrow (Sunday 1st Jan), at Café De Paris on Leicester Sq (nearest tube Piccadilly Circus), doors, including Gigolo’s VIP ones, opening at 6 p.m. and this magnificent marriage of a meet running through until a planned 1 a.m. finish, although with this Gigolo “Spunktacular” element of the event being held in Salvation’s VIP room, area & balcony, you will need a ticket to ride, the VIP package nevertheless one of the best value options around at just £20 (that’s only an added £5 to the standard ticket), this also getting you fast-track entry & a free coatcheck, not to mention all the other perks we have covered off & comes with Gigolo very impressive part of proceedings. So, to grab your pass to porn, as L.a. aptly puts it, “…the place where the tunes are pumping and the hunks are humping…”, do not pass go or even go directly to jail, rather get locked up with Gigolo at https://facebook.com/pages/Gigolo/161685023893371?sk=app_156218351098324, that or pop into Prowler in Soho, where the VIP Salvation tickets are also on sale, while for more information on Salvation’s servings tomorrow, check out our Recommends post “Spiritual Sunday Soiree” right here, or go to http://salvation-london.com.
So, it certainly looks like we will be taking in this superb Salvation serving, reserving our spot with the Gigolo scene glitterati so if you see us in our select spot, then make sure you come up & say hi, naturally ensuring that you, “Go There! Be There!” (DISCO MATT)
If its style & sophistication you are seeking this New Years Eve, then The Shadow Lounge will be serving it up by the barrel load, that along with plenty of saucy shenanigans as the eyes of Soho look deep into the delight that is this premier gay venue’s “Greek Gods & Gladiators” gathering, But what’s it all about Alfie?, well……
We are never one to purposefully renege on a promise or a pledge, so while we gave The Shadow Lounge a “Short Shout” in our NY recommends newsletter, we did say that we would delve a little deeper into the detail of their plans for New year’s Eve. Plus given that this sophisticated spot in Soho has been part of the scene fabric for over 10 years now, we thought it only right to extend our recommends arm a little further with a last minute mini look at the venue’s “Greek Gods & Gladiators Party, which takes place tomorrow night (Sat 31st Dec), better known, New Years Eve, the day in the diary when the whole world waves goodbye to the old and waves in the new, And while some of you may find yourselves on The Thames watching the fireworks display, while others may be in house party mood with many of your magnificent muckers, we can be pretty sure that a considerable crowd will be looking to the Shadow Lounge to provide the New Year celebratory pomp & circumstance and it seems the team has come up trumps again.
So getting right into the detail, what is The Shadow Lounge serving up this New Year’s Eve?, Well, as we deluded to and the event title suggest, the theme is kind of drawing on a string of thoughts that will be all about in 2012, especially here in London, as (as if you didn’t know already), the Olympics are coming to town and so the terrific team behind one of Europe’s premier gay membership clubs decided it would be a great idea to celebrate that as we reach this momentous year in the capital’s history. But rather than looking to the now, they are taking us back to ancient times, when, as the club’s Events manager, Filipe Borne, put it to us, “…the Olympics were all about semi-naked men wrestling each other…” we like the sound of this party already!, Filipe adding “…this being a time when being gay didn’t even have a name, it was just the norm…”, yippee!!. But moreover, this “Greek Gods & Gladitors” gathering very much invites down that mythological path, no doubt bumping into a handful of Greco/Roman gods & gladiators of your own, we being pretty sure that The Shadow Lounge will be helping your dreams come true with a hefty helping of hunky eye-candy to treat all your senses to, the promise of “…stage Hellenic dancers, gladiators and sexy gods…” right up our alley!!
But naturally no party would be a party without mounds of magnificent music and The Shadow Lounge will be unleashing their centurions of sound on the captivated crowd tomorrow night, this sophisticated turned saucy Soho spot having lined up D.J.’s Harvey Adam, Adam Turner and Andrew Elmore (gosh that’s a lot of A’s!!) whom we are told will “…turn the dance floor into a gladiator’s arena to keep you dancing all night long…” and we can well believe it given the pedigree & training of these terrific talents. Now, having been credited as one of the fastest rising D.J.’s on the Shoo scene, Harvey Adam’s (also known as Harveyandro) sets his sound stool across a spectrum that includes uplifting/front house through to more tech tones tunes, but will have his eye & ear firmly on the party end of his spinning cycle on Saturday, while Adam Turner brings his home-grown skills along with some devilishly handsome looks to the party, an eclectic mix of the freshest & hottest fusion electro as well as pure & unadulterated dance remixes of your favourite pop-tastic tunes that along with the odd cheeky (not cheesy silly!) classic chucked in for good measure, all ensuring he will be a music god of sizeable proportions. Then there is Andrew Elmore, a chap that is every inch The Shadow Lounge, having been part of the residency team for the vast majority of the clubs history, his experience & knowledge of the crowd along with his pitch of both classic & modern house hits the clubs own golden ticket to a tremendous time.
So that’s the party theme & that’s the music machine, so what about the delectable detail? Well, The Shadow Lounge swings open its N.Y.E. doors at the super early time of 9 p.m. tomorrow night (Sat 31st Dec), also having lined up a super late of a spectacular if but bleary eyed finish at 7 a.m., advance tickets still available (although you will have to be quick) online at http://theshadowlounge.co.uk, or from Soho outlets Prowler & Clone Zone, priced at £20 for members & their guests (up to 4), while for others it £25, entry on the door possibly available, but expect to pay £30 plus, while we are told that a phone call or even a pop into the venue could secure you that all important entry pass, while in terms of entry, we are sure you will want to be one of the first 100 guests in, not least as the team will then welcome you with a complimentary champagne and canapés reception, all served by the fabulous Shadow Lounge hosts, no doubt dressed for the occasion. And talking of dress, there is an optional code of “…togas, sandals and whatever it takes to bring you back to Ancient Greece: Zeus, Poseidon, Dionysius, Cupid, Hercules…” you get the picture. Plus, if you feel like splashing out, VIP booth reservations are also available, including your own personal waiter & space for plenty of friends, more info up on the clubs website (address above). So, if it weren’t for our house party commitments, we are sure Shadow Lounge would have been on our NY tour of duty, meaning we cannot think of a better place for you to be seen on the scene on Saturday, so get your hands on (while you can) the most talked about New Year’s Eve tickets and welcome the New Year in style at The Shadow Lounge. (DISCO MATT)
With our “Best Bites” posted in part one, now it’s time to “Short Shout” in part two, this second half of our re-styled newsletter guiding you through the forthcoming N.Y. weekend, covering a delightful dozen of scene showings where you could be laying your Happy New hat, whether your choice is Soho, Vauxhall or Shoreditch, each shout getting the Disco Matt thumbs up!
Well, the die is cast, our weekly recommends newsletters are back, although in a slightly revised format, splitting our “Best Bites” away from our “Short Shouts” (here), making the weekly roll call of where to be & be seen on the scene a two part affair. And in dividing it the way we do, we are hoping to shout for many more bars, clubs & events here, this N.Y. weekend being no exception, meaning it’s time to crack on & mention many, this in addition to those “Best Bites” & Focus” recommendations already reaped.
So to Soho first and The Shadow Lounge, who are ringing in 2012 with a special party, the theme “Greek Gods & Gladiators”, very much hinting towards a year in London that will be all about The Olympics, the relay team of D.J.’s including Andrew Elmore, Adam Turner & Harvey Adam, while there will be a mass of mythological majesties to feast your eyes on, bronzed hunks & plenty more besides, that on top of free canopies & champagne for the first 100 guests through the door. Kicking off at 9 p.m. on NYE (Sat 31st) , advanced tickets & info on this event is available via http://theshadowlounge.co.uk while we will be popping an Extra Bites post out in time for tomorrow.
Our next Soho shout goes to Rupert Street who never fail to pull in the punters on NYE, the free entry to the premier place on the bar treading trip a pretty good reason why a flock of folks do just that. And with resident D.J. Alessandro Londra spinning the sounds, it should be a right good knees up, the bevy of beauties that are the bar staff sure to get you in the party mood, while with house champagne at just £15 a bottle, is cheaper than going to the offie. Add that to fellow Bello Italian Micky Galliano on the D.J. decks tomorrow night (Fri 30th) and this brilliant bar definitely gets a huge tick from us, more info out at http://rupertstreet.com.
Onward and to Ku-Bar, both venues seeing in the New Year in style with promises of poppers, streamers, blowers, hats, whistles & the rest, Lisle St switching the big screens to go live to the BBC before midnight, so you can take the whole London fireworks display in without leaving your beer, your wine or (preferably) your champers behind. So, rather than braving the cold, succumb to the heat of both Ku’s, the temperature rising with all those cute Ku boys floating around, while a delightful drop of D.J.’s will be spinning the sounds including The Very Miss Dusty O & Lady Lloyd, further details on happenings available by going to http://ku-bar.co.uk
Then how could we leave out The Edge, this four floored fabulousness up on Soho Square already beginning to decked out for one of the biggest NYE parties on the block, the team promising a drove of drag queens, a bunch of bar hunks & a score of scene starlets, all deployed to pump up proceedings, while music pumping will certainly be the name of the game too as weekly resident & our king pin protégé player of 2011, Zach Burns, spins the pop, and (we hate to use the word but…) commercial tunes, although “aga-doo” has been banned. That said, with a theme that demands you to dress to impress, anything could happen in the wardrobe department, more details on the NYE delight as well as other shenanigans at http://edgesoho.co.uk.
To our final Soho Short Shout and Circa, a bar which we warmed to from the minute we stepped foot in it not too long after the launch earlier this year, the place oozing style & sophistication, if a little compact & bijou. But what Circa lacks in size, it makes up for in substance, this NYE being no different to the norm in that respect, as the team welcome Munroe Bergdorf & Adam Turner (my he’s a busy boy!!) to the decks, while the exceptional eye-candy that frequents the place will be well worth saving that first 2012 kiss for, the late opening till 4 a.m. another reason to swing by, more info available at http://circasoho.com.
Right, let’s mosey on down to Vauxhall and while The Orange Group has already been given a big slice of our New Year cake coverage, there was one event that fell through the DM recommends net, perhaps as it falls on Friday, i.e. tomorrow (30th Dec). Yet with Onyx once again teaming up with A:M to produce a party that lasts for a full twelve hours, we are not sure how we could have missed it, especially as joint promoters Steven Sharp & Verity Mayes are welcoming special guest (a prolific promoter herself) Jodie Harsh to the decks, she a pretty accomplished D.J. along with being a real crowd puller/pleaser. Plus with residents that include Onyx’s Lee Harris, Jc Christopher & Lisa German, along with A:Mer’s Fat Tony, David Jimenez, & D’Johnny, this “Christmas Nativity Headliners Part 2” is well worth a look in, host venue Area’s doors opening at 10 p.m., with more details available at http://orangenation.com.
Well that wasn’t that short for a shout was it, so let’s try again, this time hitting off on The Royal Vauxhall Tavern (RVT), who as usual have a packed weekend, tomorrow (Fri 30th) seeing “Robyn Hood”, otherwise known as the annual RVT panto take to the stage, while the rest of their NY weekend is given away to “S.L.A.G.S./Chillout” who hold a special “Pink NYE Ball” on Sat (31st), while on NYD it’s another session with D.E.E. & co, added to which on Monday (2nd Jan), jeepers creepers, its yet another one, the third “Experience” in one weekend never enough for her faithful following, more details on this legendary venue available at http://thervt.org.uk.
Moving just down the street (or is that lane) and we find The Eagle who, themselves, have a pretty hectic NY weekend, tomorrow night seeing the Tonker boys ring in the New Year, even if it is a day early, while on NYE, it could only be Carpet Burn with their “Big Bang” party, welcoming Readers Wives to the guest D.J. slot. Then, as if you had seen the back of a double (or in some cases a treble) dosage of do’s, both NYD & bank holiday Monday sees the Horse Meat Disco crew celebrate reaching 2012 in one piece, guest D.J John Morales welcomed with open arms on NYD, while its Maurice Fulton’s turn to fill the same slot on Monday, more details on all happenings out at http://theeaglelondon.com.
Now, just before we head east, let’s move a little south, to Brixton in fact, as it is The Brixton Club House that gets our next Short Shout and for good reason, as the black & beautiful (or should that be bootyful?!) Bootylicious finds itself a fleeting visit of a one-off home for NYD, the team making advantage of the their hosts revamped spaces that now include a state-of-the-art dancefloor along with a brand new chill area. And with the D.J. line up that includes Jeffrey Hinton, Kartel Brown, & Tyron, Mc Brandy will also be on hand, no doubt keeping everyone in party mood, this party kicking off from 11 p.m. on Sunday (1st Jan) & running through till 5 a.m., more info out at http://thebrixtonclubhouse.co.uk.
So, out east we go and to Shoreditch, East Bloc equally as busy as some of its Vauxhall counterparts, we having already given our Best Bite slot in this neck of the woods to the venue who host Gustterslut on NYE. But the partying starts a night before, tomorrow in fact with the superb Super Techno Party Machine, D.J. Larry Tee turning out the tunes, while hopping across the NY weekend to NYD and its two parties that steal the East Bloc spotlight, midday affair Kowloon picking up where Gutterslut left off, entertaining the likes of DTPM’s Miguel Pellittero, Borja Pena, Daniel Delay & special Berliner guest Kevin Funkt (we know who he’s dating!). But the picture is completed by Blue Jeans, a spin-off of from Meat, promoter & D.J./producer Kris Di Angelis trying out his new clubbing concept, the night having an equally Room Service inspired feel with Jodie Harsh, Dmitry Strugen & Joshyou Are sorting the sounds, info on the exceptional East Bloc available at http://eastbloc.co.uk.
Then heading up into Dalston, we find The Dalston Superstore, who also have a three tiered NY weekend, although in attempting to keep it a Short Shout, we just hit off on NYE & NYD, the former in the hands of Sink The Pink, who hold their “Tranarchy” event with, yes you guessed it, a transgender team that includes their now infamous “Stick a Wig On The…” competition, while the musical moments are provided by Holestar, Prince Nelly & John Sizzle. Then on NYD, DSS has a Gutterslut feel to it when Wet-N-Wild, takeover DSS for both the day & the night, serving up disco, electro & plenty more, Per Q.X. Nic Fischer & Shay Malt among the 10 strong D.J. team, more details on this all events at this hip & happening hangout a mere click away at http://thedalstonsuperstore.com.
But we continue in the realm of Gutterslut for our final Short Shout out east, as it is Trailertrash that takes over from GS on NYD (well runs a little simultaneously actually), kicking off its “Pie-n-Mashup” party at The Dolphin, 160 Mare St, Hackney from 5 a.m., serving up tasty musical treats until 1 p.m. which the team tell us could well include “…anything & everything from Whitney to Techno, Chas n Dave to Disco…” while they also warn us to expect “…a lot of people falling over on the floor…” oh and we can’t forget plenty of pies (yes real East End pie & mash) too. So, with the likes of Mikki Most, Ian Robinson, Josh Caffe, Rokk & D.J. Squeaky on the decks, this is sure to be a mash-up to end them all, more info up at http://trailertrash.co.uk.
Right, that’s just about it for this part two of our re-styled recommends newsletter, we hoping that by separating our Short Shouts from our Best Bites will, in time, allow us to cover a richer variety of bars, clubs & events on a weekly basis. And with that in mind, should you wish someone, somewhere, or something mentioned in future part two’s, then just drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org, or fill out a comment to this post. So, in signing off, we take the opportunity (again) of wishing you a very Happy New Year and with all our shouts here plus our choices in part one, we hope like us, you are seen on the scene somewhere this NY weekend, meaning you will definitely “Go There! Be There! (DISCO MATT)
With the New Year weekend on our doorsteps, Disco Matt gets his Recommends act together and after revealing his plans to split his weekly newsletter into two parts, covers his “Best Bites” choices of where to be & be seen on the scene in this, part one.
Looking back over the last few weeks, nay months, if there has been one part of our writing that we have yearned for the most, it is our weekly recommends newsletter, one which has come & gone more often than a London bus, the sheer size & scale of the post meaning we have to set aside a sizeable chunk of our time, which, simply hasn’t been there of late. Yet, as we begin to draw the curtains on 2011 & welcome in 2012, we are determined to bring this much maligned newsletter back, although for sake of speed & regularity, will be splitting it into two each week, focussing on our “Best Bites” in part one (here) and our “Short Shouts” in part two., while our Weekend Focuses & Extra Bites will continue as before. So, with that revision to our newsletter made public, let’s crack on with this part, looking at our Best Bites for the New Year Weekend across Soho, Vauxhall & Shoreditch.
So to Soho first and we are thrilled to welcome back & be recommending Profile & Lo-Profile the creative combo on Wardour St that has really been motoring while we have been away, not least Lo-Profile, as their home-gown brand “Society” has successfully switched from Friday’s to Thursday’s, while its replacement, “Playtime”, has made hay while the sun shines on them rather than their Friday competition. And while “Society” now falls a little outside the remit of this newsletter, we still had to give tonight’s (Thurs 29th) party a mention as it features two of our favourite talents, Jamie Head & Terry Bryan , although the main focus clearly falls first on “Playtime” tomorrow night (Fri 30th), when Lovechild resident jocks Tony English & Alessandro London head up a Friday frolic that will surely include plenty of that handsome & hunky eye-candy which the club has become notorious for, this week, porn stars Kriss Aston & Will Helm flaunting their wares. Plus with host Jay Roberts also tempting the lucky ones into his backroom boudoir for some extracurricular attention, “Playtime” is very much the place to be & be seen this Friday, doors swinging open at 10 p.m. & the club running to a planned 4 a.m. finish, entry just £5 before midnight or £8 thereafter, while upstairs in Profile, our very own protégé player, Junior Moura, gets you in playful mood from 8 .30 till 11.30 p.m. more info on Lo-Profile up at http://loprofile.com.
However, it is New Years Eve that looks like being the big one for Profile & Lo-Profile, not least that the two will be combining to make one huge venue for the night, free flowing between to two, while entry will be monitored & masterminded via the Lo-Profile door. So what can you expect from this NYE combo? Well, first & foremost, we are reliably informed that the numbers to this event will be strictly limited so as to avoid those dreadful crushes that all so often besiege these sorts of bashes, this also allowing the gorgeous hunks of bar boys (and the beautiful bar girls too) to serve you with relative speed and we have to say that, following our Christmas drinks do with The Pitron posse there last Friday, we are really digging some of the Profile new recruits, yum yum!! But we digress, so back to the party and the music, which looks like being absolutely top draw, not least that newcomer to the Profile/Lo-Profile resident team, the cheeky Steven Artis will be sorting the superb sounds along with Nathan 6, a terrific talent who impresses us on all levels (if you know what we mean!), while Nick Evans is sure to add that uplifting/upfront house feel that any New Year’s party should have, these music makers on top of the team turning out the best of their gorgeous go-go dancers to woo & wow you on the podiums downstairs, while they will be doing plenty of circulating upstairs too, just to make sure you are all entering into the spirit. Add to that special offers on bottles of bubbly to see in 2012 in style and there is no surprise why this is one prolific NYE package, doors opening at 10 p.m. and the party running through to an extended 6 a.m. finish, entry available on the door for just £10, while if you have joined or quickly join the clubs mailing list, then you may be one of the lucky ones who gets free entry, more info on this available at http://loprofile.com, while details of drinks offers & those champagne prices/listings are out at http://profilesoho.com.
Onward to Vauxhall now and while there are quite a few contenders to our Best Bites NYE/NYD weekend crown, it has to be The Orange Group that gets knighted here, as they do have the lions share of shindigs on offer, three which have already been given extensive coverage. So, as Beyond NYD, As One & WE (not Vauxhall of course) have benefitted from their own devotions in our “Gigantic Gilded Gambit” post, we (pardon the pun) won’t go over old ground, rather focus on Later & two other Beyond offerings, the first a little known quantity as not much has been said about it in the wider press, meaning you read it here first. And it relates to Beyond, as the club & team actually ring in 2012 with the NYD event’s pre-party at Factory, bringing with it splashes of Beyond itself in the form of a handful of residents from the superstar team, while the pyro’s & effects should come close to matching the fireworks just up the river outside, added to which there will also be a special countdown to midnight to make sure you don’t miss out. Advance £10 (only) tickets are on sale online at http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2011-12/31/nye-pre-beyond-party-factory while entry will be available on the door, Factory (entrance on Goding St) opening at 10 p.m. & the club running through till a staggering 7 a.m., free entry all night offered to “Golden Ticket” holders. Then while NYD Beyond takes over, we fast forward another 24 hours as this awesome afterhours does it all again, Beyond “Recharged” kicking in as As One empties out, Area’s door opening at 7 a.m., Monday 2nd Jan and the club running through till a 2 p.m. finish. Now while the D.J. line-up remains unconfirmed as yet, names in the frame include Alan K, Jamie Hammond, The Oli, Fat Tony, Hifi Sean, Paul Christian & The Sharp Boys (well boy actually & probably George), while what we do know this that this will be a carry-on to carry on to, advance tickets at £12 available online at http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2012-01/02/beyond-recharged-the-second-comin (the early bird £10 ones are sold out), while entry will be available on the door, but expect to pay more.
So that’s Beyond, now what about Later? Well, to be honest, we often overlook Later in our Weekend round-ups & focuses so we thought it high time to give it an extra special mention, not least that, having rubbed shoulders with one of its resident D.J.’s at our Christmas drinks do last week, Jamie Head reminded us of just how amazing a purple patch the club is finding itself in at the moment. And with Later on NYD having formed such an important part of our own clubbing heritage, it will come as no surprise that promoter Jay Sharp Vokins is looking to re-emulate those halcyon days (no doubt drawing us in this coming Sunday), as he draws on the towering talents of one-time regular resident Per Q.X. to headline the club’s NYD party, another D.J. icon of the clubbing scene, Guy Williams, joining him on the decks. Now, while we know Jamie will be away partying hard at Berghain in Berlin & D’Johnny cutting a WE stride in Madrid, we can guarantee that Jay will have other residents on hand, including The Oli, advance tickets (recommended) available for just £8 at http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2012-01/01/later-nyd-2012. Then, if you have the energy & stamina, like Beyond, Later has a second coming the following afternoon (Mon 2nd Jan), when the team will be doing it all again and with a strap line that shouts “We Can Do It”, Jay is certainly willing us on to do just that, especially as he welcomes special guest Jc Christopher & Leonardo Glovibes to the decks, joining an ever present Oli along with others for sure, doors opening at 1 p.m. and the event running “superlate”, while on NYD, Later’s opening times are midday till 8 p.m., further info available at http://fireclub.co.uk/gayparties.
So to our Shoreditch NY weekend Best Bite and it has to be Gutterslut, which holds sway on New Years Eve at its hip & happening home, East Bloc on City Rd. Now, with NYE being a Saturday, Gutterslut-ers will feel pretty much at home with their clubbing clock, while they will still have fond memories of the recent Gutterball at Rhythmn Factory in their minds & souls, so will sure want to “ave it” on Saturday night (31st Dec). And the Gutterslut crew will be giving it to them, not least as Per & Nic welcome two special guest D.J.’s who will be playing out in the “Rave” room, relative new name to the world of dance music, Birdee, the first, this emerging talent explaining of his sound “…a blend of housey beats, obscure 70s samples and wobbly b-lines…” while his latest release “Shake It” has been aired by a no less than BBC Radio 1, along with the likes of Boris Dlugosch & Tom Staar. Then, Per is thrilled to welcome feloow Swede Peo de Pitte (can’t be his real name?!) who hails from Stockholm, although (like Mr Q.X.) relocated to London a while ago, his trademark combination of big room beats and cutting edge synth’s sure to go down a storm with Gutterslut-ers, especially in the knowledge that his production work has won support from a long list of music tall poppy’s including Afrojack, Groove Armada & Roger Sanchez (wow!). With our super Swede, Per Q.X., along with Nic Fischer completing the “Rave” room line-up, over in the “Discoslut” space, it’s down to resident Ralf to keep DJ disco dudes Miltos & The Golden Fleece and Shay Malt in check, our Gutterslut man having his hands full, especially when we look at their resume’s which include the words, frenzied, hotrod, hijack & sexbag, surely meaning its going to be an absolute riot in there. Plus, with Miss MC Crystal doing her outrageous thing, with visuals supplied by both PrickImage & the Dalston Gay Mafia, need we say anymore apart from, if its alternative & outrageous antics you are after, look no further than right here, making sure you grab one of the remaining advance tickets at http://www.ticketweb.co.uk/user/?region=gb_london&query=detail&event=482048, while you may (and we say may) get entry on the door, but we highly suspect it will be one in-one out within minutes of opening at 11 p.m., the club running to a wayout & whacky 9 a.m., meaning that, in the inimitable words of Mr Fischer, “…its gonna be craaaazy!!!…” and we LOVE IT!!.
So that’s our Best Bites for this N.Y. weekend done & dusted, but hold tight for a delightful dozen of “Short Shouts” coming up, while we take the first of many opportunities to wish you a very happy New Year, our plans on hold due to the dreaded flu, although, fingers crossed, we will be better & seeing it in with some close & dear friends before the NYD onslaught. But whatever you are up to & wherever it may find you ringing in 2012, have a terrific time, naturally making sure you “Go There! Be There! (DISCO MATT)
There was the Big Ticket and now there is the Golden Ticket, a pass to not one or two, but three prolific parties on New Year’s Day, Beyond, WE “Safari” & As One all pulled into one perfect package for clubbers to concede to, Disco Matt devoting a special focus to each element of this outstanding Orange Group offer.
If there is one element of the scene that has been a superb success during 2011, it has been the outstanding offers The Orange Group have complimented the capitals clubbers with, plenty of discounted entries to a whole wealth of wonders throughout the year that have maintained its position as the premier gay clubbing promotions machine across the London landscape. Yet a further element that has proven a runaway winner is the ticket combination that has manifested itself across all the extra length weekends of 2011, Easter, Gay Pride & the August Bank Holiday three examples where the so called “Big Ticket” has rolled two/three club offerings into one and at an exceptional reasonable price at that. But what this concessionary combo has also achieved, is a fast-track entry to all the clubs involved, along with the dispensing of that need to hold individual tickets for each event, an idea in its conception that has proven a fantastic formula for a ferry load of folks flocking to the feast of forays on these extended party weekend’s of the year. So, with New Year’s Day on our doorstep and with the “Big Ticket” now becoming the “Golden Ticket”, it was a fore drawn conclusion that this delightful deal would get our devotion & recommendation, delving into the detail of the package & its offering, then giving you that all important online link.
So, what does this “Golden Ticket” actually offer? Well, in the words of its sponsor, The Orange Group’s primary promotions director, Jonny Marsh, has told us that “…it represents the hottest ticket for the New Year 2012, not least as it combines three of our most prolific parties of the period…” that of course being Beyond NYD, WE “Safari – Daytime” & As One, the latter returning after a s slight re-shuffle (more on that in a minute), Mr Marsh adding that this “Golden Ticket” “…gets you guaranteed queue jump access to all these events this NYD and offers exceptional value for money at close on “early bird” prices that you cannot beat…”. And we certainly aren’t arguing with any of that as in Beyond, WE & As One, you have three premier parties that are sure to draw roadblock crowds, especially given their prolific performances throughout 2011, that fast track pass becoming your essential entry, or as the team prefer to say it, “…your golden ticket…” to these gigantic gatherings. But how exactly does the “Golden Ticket” work?, Well, it’s pretty simple really, you make your online purchase at http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2012-01/01/the-nyd-goldent-ticket-2012, and when you arrive at your first event, swap your online ticket printout for your “Golden Ticket”, which we are reliably informed will be in the form of a credit card sized golden plastic ticket for you to fit neatly in your wallet, purse, ciggie box, etc, leaving you to party away to your heart’s content from Beyond start to As One finish, safe in the knowledge that that important queue jump at each event will secure your speedy entry and all for just £40.
Now, while £40 may sound quite a lot, when you compare it to regular New Year prices which can be £15, £20 or even £25 for just one event and with this “Golden Ticket” you get three parties for one, the first being the brilliant Beyond, the “all roads lead to afterhours” that has continued to ride its wonderful wave crest during 2011 and looks set to start 2012 in superb style, meaning it will definitely be THE place to be & be seen as New Year’s Day begins to unfold. And, the team will be drawing on one of the most powerful team of resident D.J.’s for this first event of NYD, the usual three rooms of fun swinging open to recapture the thrill & excitement that Beyond has delivered, week in week out for the last twelve months (and more!!) Mr Marsh remarking that “…this party last year was one of the biggest ever, boasting a capacity crowd, and three rooms of incredible music…” adding “…miss this year’s and you will definitely miss out…”. So, having done just that on last NYD, even the flu attack we are suffering with won’t keep us away, not least that the main room will be sporting the likes of The Sharp Boys & Alan K, along with superstar Steve Pitron who will surely be sending us on that rollercoaster ride of tearful emotions with his terrific tunes. But with Gonzalo Rivas, Hifi Sean, Paul Christian, Fat Tony The Oli & Jonny M involved too, as well as a the dream team of dancers headed by the enigmatic Elektra Paris, this is one Beyond we cannot wait to savour & succumb to from start to finish, that start keeping to the regular time slot winning formula, as Area’s doors will be opening at 6 a.m., the event running through to a planned 1 p.m.finish, while should you opt out of the “Golden Ticket” then fear not, as separate advance tickets at £12 are on sale at the usual Soho outlets, Prowler, Clone Zone & 50, as well as online at http://clubtickets.com.
Then there is the second slice of the “Golden Ticket” threesome and what a second slice it is, as is the award winning WE is back, the party that launched in London just over 12 months ago, but literally took the scene by storm, fighting off the snow clasping the capital at the time to show the way for a succession of superb shindigs. With the NYD “Attacks” event still planted firmly in our memories, not least due to pulsatingly prolific performances from Spanish resident D.J. Carlos Gallardo & P.A. Peyton, whose showing’s were simply superb, we are pleased as punch to see Mr Gallardo in the line-up for this year’s NYD event, “Daytime Safari” the theme and a t-dance timing the shifted slot, while with The Coronet as the host venue and that winning formula of dynamic & incomparable LED displays, exceptional effects, lasers & pyro’s package are all pretty much unchanged, meaning this should be yet another WE party to remember & add to the captivating catalogue that includes “Candy”, “Heroes” &, of course “Disco”. And it seems that with a main room D.J. team that includes a returning & resplendent Gonzalo Rivas who has devoted a podcast pressing to the event (check it out at http://soundcloud.com/gonzalo-rivas/we-safari-nyd-2012), along with Beyond boys Jamie Head & Steve Pitron, we will be hard pressed to avoid this event, especially as social soiree splendour Room Service also returns to take over the upstairs space, Jodie Harsh & co bringing back residents Kris Di Angelis & Fat Tony to the fore. Add to all that a special guest PA (we are wondering already!) and this is definitely looking like another magnificent meet, although please note that WE will be opening, not at its usual time, but earlier at 6 p.m. this Sunday (1st Jan), the club running through to a planned 2 a.m. finish, advance tickets priced at £18 available via http://wepartylondon.com while those usual Soho outlets will also being selling too. Plus, no party would be a party without a pre-party, the “official” one taking place tonight (Thurs 29th Dec) at Room Service, more info on that available by going to http://clubroomservice.com.
And so to the final element of this gigantic gold gilded gambit, the awesome As One, a colossus of a collaboration that has its roots in New Year’s Day, having stolen the NYD show when it was launched two years ago. The brainchild of prolific promoter Alex Erfan, we deluded earlier to a slight re-shuffle and while we are saddened that Alex is no longer part of the As One promotions picture, we couldn’t think of a better man to fill his substantial shoes than Steven Sharp, the man behind Orange & A:M and an individual that, for us, held the reigns of Beyond brilliantly, bringing us the legendary (we don’t use that word lightly) “Tokyo” event, very much paving the way for successive promoters of our favourite club of all-time to follow in his fantastic footsteps. So with As One is a safe & capable hands, what does this latest collaborative combo command in terms of clubbing brands? Well, if you happened to miss out on the magical “Citric Chrimo Combo” (review on its way!) then you can get a second bite at the cherry, as Trade returns to join Orange (which includes a special “RAW” room), together with the beef-tastic Megawoof & East Ender, The Men Who Fell 2 Earth, this As One amalgamation spreading itself right across host venue Fire and into the new(ish) smart & swish Protocol. Orange will be assuming control of Fire’s main room, sporting a D.J. cast that includes residents Fat Tony, The Oli & The Sharp Boys, although the exciting news is the inclusion of special guest Smokin Jo, Steven commenting on her inclusion “… we are proud to be inviting her back to Fire following an incredible DJ debut at A:M back in October…” he adding “…Jo really needs no introduction having been a tour de force in the Global dance world for the past 20 years delivering her take on all things House in every corner of the planet; from Ibiza to Hong Kong, Australia to South Africa & China to Clerkenwell (Trade!), while the “RAW” Orange element at As One will be masterminded by three magnificent music men, David Jimenez, Hifi Sean & Severino, this fab threesome merging into one with a “..three way play-off of disco tech delights like never heard of before…”.
Then we look at the mothership of clubbing, Trade, returning to once again delight us dynamic drops of dramatic dance delectations, Nick Tcherniak, who absolutely nailed a pulsating performance last Sunday, returning to do it all again, he joined by Lee Yeomans and special Trade guest Anderson Noise, playing an exclusive set for the brand. However, while all these D.J.’s will be craving for our attention, it will be Gonzalo Rivas’s own Trade reunion that will command our appearance on our spot, all those magical memories of the Turmills days surely coming back in leaps & bounds, this especially given we missed out on the clubs birthday in October when, as Steven painfully reminds us, “…London’s clubbers were out in force when this legendary afterhours celebrated the incredible achievement of 21 years in the business…” he also adding that “…Trade has joined forces with the Orange Nation team on many occasions in recent years including the award winning “Orange Trade” parties and most recently with “Ultimate…” , meaning the second match up in a week should prove a dancing delight. But the As One pitch of players continues, with Megawoof & The Men Who Fell 2 Earth, the former sporting Daz Saund & Micky Galliano, while special guest Mark Moore (of S-Express fame) spearheads the latter, while there will be a special As One hosted VIP space within the Protocol section of this event, although easy passage between all six spaces will be available. So, quickly running down the detail, As One opens its doors at 11 p.m. this NYD (Sunday 1st Jan), running through to a planned 8 a.m. finish, with separate tickets to this event on sale both online at http://orangenation.clubtickets.com as well as across those Soho outlets, priced at £15, although we suggest you get one quick, as last year was a sell-out before the day & this year the early bird tickets sold out in record time.
So, that’s the “Golden Ticket” package pinned down (with more info if you need it at http://nydgoldenticket.com) and a final reminder that this £40 option represents great value for money, especially when you consider that even if buying advanced tickets for the three events separately, you would need to fork out much more. But moreover this golden pass gets you that all important fast track entry that we all want on New Year’s Day and for that & that alone it makes perfect sense. (DISCO MATT)
After a year cutting a significant stride on the global clubbing circuit, the superb Salvation returns to its spiritual home, London’s Café De Paris, with a prolific party that will surely dazzle & delight, Disco Matt delving into all the detail of this dynamic draw, including podcast page links & much much more right here, right now
Oh times they have changed on the capitals clubbing scene, Sunday afternoon/evening clubbing having, like the merry-go-round on a funfair, come & gone before our very eyes, the trends towards this so called “t-dance” slot waxed and waned over the years, recent attempts to rekindle the penchant for these party pitches falling on relatively deaf ears, T.T.D. just one example of what could so easily have been but never was. However, with the history books crammed with clubs making this sacred Sunday slot their playing ground, including greats such as D.T.P.M. & Factor 25, there is no doubting the dancing devotee’s draw to this day in the diary. But while many have tried & some have succeeded superbly, in reality there is only one name in our prolific picture frame when it comes to t-dancing on a Sunday, Salvation the king, the queen, the prince, the jack & even the ace of the clubbing pack of cards, historical home Café De Paris part of that perfect package that made this brilliant brand the sumptuously spectacular & stand-out Sunday session that it became. Indeed, over the years Salvation has also played its joker card on New Year’s Day on many occasions, again proving that it still has the dynamic draw it had way back when, this coming Sunday (1st January) looking set to prove that point once more.
So, Salvation is back on New Year’s Day and back to its spiritual soiree home, Café De Paris in central London, the glamour, the opulence & the sophistication that is every inch this brilliant brand and, for us, shows Salvation at its best, this following a resplendent return back in November for the clubs 13th Anniversary, which by all accounts (sadly we were missing in injury action) was a sell-out sensation, putting Salvation firmly back on the clubbing calendar map of meets. And it is on the back of this return that promoter Steve Elliot & his terrific team have decided that they want to share all that Salvation style & sophistication with us once again, claiming their rightful place under the New Year’s Day spotlight, as they have done on so many occasions in the past, Mr Elliot exclaiming that “…if disused cinemas or cramped railway arches send a shiver down your spine, then pull on your snow boots, head up to Leicester Square and step into our winter wonderland…” Salvation shrugging off the pretender to its NYD t-dance crown which unashamed bravery, Steve adding, “…who wouldn’t want to ring in the Olympic New Year 2012 in style and at the most exclusive party of the season to boot, London’s brightest & best…”, Salvation once again determined to strike with its soiree splendour in scintillating style.
With that prolific picture painted, what is actually on offer at this Salvation NYD?, Well first & foremost, the crafty & cheeky Mr Elliot is keeping much of the plans under wraps, although Café De Paris as a venue speaks volumes in terms of those words, style, sophistication, opulence & elegance that, if you have not been there before, will hit you from the moment you step through those doors. And we cannot wait to swish down that double staircase once again, without doubt the most exciting entrance to a club we know. That aside, Steve is sure to pull out all the stops on production & effects and given the incredible effort thrown into parties, not just here in London, but right around the world (and we are taking global folks), Salvation having touched on destinations during 2011 that include places near such as Paris, Rome, Amsterdam & Athens, or as far as Australia, South Africa, & Brazil. But 2012 is very much the focus this time round and, given Steve’s reference to The Olympics, we are surmising that this will come into play somewhere within the production, while the “Winter Wonderland” element will also give a clue towards the dynamic decor that is sure to play a part in proceedings, Raul Gonzales’s delectable dancers & displays a big feature of this fabulous frolic, added to which the meaty men for Manhunt will be adding the extra eye-candy that any party of this nature needs, Steve cementing our thoughts by saying “…come revel in dazzling dance shows, stunning visual performances, top DJs, state of the art sound, lighting & effects, plus London’s sexiest men, all to make sure your New Year gets off to a big bang!…”.
Now if that isn’t enough to convince you, then the music definitely should, as Salvation serves up one of the tastiest tight knit teams we know, Steve drawing on the skilful strings of his dream D.J. residents in the form of Oliver M, Pier Morrocco, Paul Coals and (no Salvation party would be the same without her) our very own foxy female Miswhite, each one playing their part in pumping out uplifting, euphoric & energetic house music for which Salvation & any decent t-dance should be crammed full with, so euro & Spanish beats will be pushed aside in favour of hands in the air dance delectations that will surely lift the roof of Café De Paris on Sunday. But don’t just take our word for it, as two of Salvation’s star turns have laid down compilations in celebration of this NYD delectation, Oliver M first up with his aptly named “A Year Of Dance”, this 107 minute marvel kicking off with the truly tremendous “Bitch Lady” followed by “Pressure”, both setting the scene for a prolific podcast reflecting the tons of tunes Oliver has been treating Salvation audiences to around the world during 2011. And we find a D.J. right back at the top of his game too, Oliver having put his club promoting activities to one side, concentrating on his D.J.’ing which has borne considerable fruit, Brazil, Mexico & even the USA on the cards for 2012, while appearances for La Demence & a plethora of parties in his homeland Germany have littered his diary this year. So, his podcast, one which has raced up clubbing website SeenQueen’s download chart is well worth grabbing at http://soundcloud.com/ldnbear/salvation-nyd-2012-a-year-of,
However, our second Salvation pick had to go to Miswhite, our Emma pulling out a corker of a compilation which, just like its producer, is a podcast packed with excitement & energy and give a huge hint of what to expect from this pint sized powerhouse on NYD, so is an essential listen ahead of Sunday by going to http://miswhite.podomatic.com/. Then, of course, there is Pier Morrocco, a D.J. that has never failed to impress us on all fronts and continues to cut a significant stride with Salvation now, just as he did in those halcyon fe De Paris days 10/12/13 years ago, although these days, he balances D.J.’ing with a hectic mile high club career, that along with regular trips across to Moscow, all meaning that we are still waiting for a Salvation devotion from him, but a superb selection of his spinning sounds can be found at his podcast page via http://piermorrocco.podomatic.com/. But if all that wasn’t enough, the social soiree splendour, Gigolo, will be part of proceedings too, looking after the VIP room (more on that in an Extra Bites post) and bringing with them the truly towering talent that is Zach Burns, the man that moved us magnificently when the brand launched earlier this year & has since proven the jewel in the Gigolo crown, very much stealing the show at the clubs “Cumback” event earlier this month. So it comes as no surprise that he has pressed a podcast for the occasion and one which, yet again, makes our decision of which to include in our 2011 top ten chart such a difficult one, a listen at http://soundcloud.com/djzachburns/dj-zach-burns-gigolo-salvation, letting you into the saucy & sexy disco dance sounds world that will be the Gigolo VIP room in his masterful musical hands at Salvation on Sunday and a set you won’t want to miss.
So now you are convinced surely??!!, meaning all that’s left for us to do is run down on the detail, this Salvation New Year’s Day Spectacular taking place this Sunday (1st January 2012) at Café De Paris on Coventry St in the heart of London’s West End (closest tube Piccadilly Circus), doors opening from 6 p.m. & the clubbing running through to a planned 1 a.m. finish. Now, with the early bird tickets sold out, the £15 advance tickets are selling pretty quickly, meaning a visit to http://gaypartix.com/parties/LONDON/Salvation/index.htm should be sooner rather than later, although should you prefer to pick one up in person, then Soho’s Prowler store is the exclusive destination to head for. But for those that really want to splash out & be treated just that little bit more specially, the VIP option for just £5 more at an incredibly reasonable £20 is well worth considering, not least that this gives you fast-track entry, free coatcheck & access to that Gigolo “Spunktastic” Salvation VIP room/balcony. Then add in the hugely handsome host that is Alex Londres, one of Brazil’s biggest & best performers and you are guaranteed one of the warmest welcomes in the world, not forgetting the opportunity to embrace that elegant entrance down the two tiered Salvation staircase that cannot be beaten, more details on this exceptional event available at http://salvation-london.com.
With nothing more to add, we leave the final flurry of whimsical words to Salvation’s Steve, who say’s “…come and join the biggest London Circuit Party that spread the music of Salvation in over 60 countries around the world and swing from the icy chandelier this New Year’s Day…” as we will be, so in doing so, if you see us, come say hi, that along with making sure you “Go There! Be There! (DISCO MATT)
There was no George Michael, the prospect of a lengthy journey jaunt, an X Factor finalist lacking a dynamic draw, along with a tardy turnout that looked like laying this Logan Presents Anniversary to waste. But all that was before we made it to Proud2, we then enjoying one of the best P.A. performances ever, along with plenty more besides that left us walking away with a smile wider than a Cheshire cat’s. But did this Anniversary cake of a celebration actually rise to the occasion in our eyes or sink like a soggy soufflé in our minds?
We can count ourselves really fortunate to have come into contact with a whole host of key players within the capitals clubbing circuit over the years, promoters whom we have held close court with including Wayne Shires, Alex Erfan, Jodie Harsh, Oliver Mohns, Steven Sharp & Suzie Kruegar, all these prolific people commanding our huge respect for all sorts of varying reasons, while there are plenty more we could list that have made this the spectacular scene that it is. Then we turn to a bevy of the best brands these people have produced & promoted, Crash, Lovechild, Room Service, Matinee, Orange & Hard On!, all exceptional examples among stable full of others they have masterminded and have become, at worst, iconic, while at best, legendary. However, when we pinpoint certain promoters like the ones above (and there are plenty more where they came from) in our excellence category, there is another name that we also include in this illustrious company of clubbing commanders, a chap that has influenced the scene as much, if not more that all of the above, an individual that has, in the last three years or so, rarely been out of the spotlight or headlines and is a man that undoubtedly throws one hundred & ten percent into everything he does when presenting both parties & promotions to the masses and to the exceptional extent he does.
Logan Schmitz has already gone down in the capitals clubbing scene history books for, in a way, re-writing a chunk of the words of that book, perhaps also creating his own chapter of achievements, primarily for bringing Spanish brand SuperMartXe to the forefront of the mind’s of Londoners, with a string of successfully spectacular showings, a long list of exceptional events that include “Alice In Wonderland”, “The Wizard Of Oz”, “Under The Sea” & “Hot Wheels” (to mention just a few), a two year reign of resplendence, without question, elevating Logan & his team to the top of the capitals clubbing pile, only one brand stealing his thunder and one which he was heavily involved with at the time anyway. Then you extend your eyes onto the likes of “Hype”, “UP” & “Matinee”, all falling under the promotions umbrella that is Logan Presents, and the wave crest Mr Schmitz found his scene surfboard on was metaphorically has high as those heaped on Hawaii. But even he would admit that the wave came into shore quite sharply, not least due to the loss of his historical home, shortly followed by the debacle of Debut, SuperMartXe’s & Logan’s latest clubbing host, Pulse, not inspiring anywhere close to The Coronet, meaning that, as his 3rd Anniversary loomed, much boat pushing was needed to attract an attentive & adoring audience.
So the game plan was clear and with the fanfare that followed the first trickle of teasers back in early November, it was clear that Mr Schmitz was indeed looking to come back with a bang, the billing of one of the world’s biggest pop stars the centre-piece of his spangled showing, the promise of plenty elements to this exceptional event that would make it the best the scene had ever seen. Indeed, with the picture of this prolific party painted as history making & ground breaking, we were also told to expect an event we would never forget, the inclusion of one George Michael very much in ingredient that would pull the whole celebration cake mixture together, thus making one of the tastiest treats we had ever experienced in clubland. But, with fate dealing Logan a cruel hand, the situation that saw the events headliner land in hospital, the peddles on this event bicycle began to whizz round furiously, the frenzy over this whole unfortunate set of circumstances Mr Schmitz was facing, spiralling out of control, while it was that word, control, which saw a sense of calm return when further announcements revealed a dynamic D.J. line-up, planned pulsating production, a Spanish superstar songstress together with an emerging talent contest finalist, all encased in one of the best venue’s London has to offer. So, having previewed, reported & eventually recommended in extensive detail on this dance diary delectation, effectively talking the talk, it was time to for us to walk the walk, hot footing it down to Greenwich and Proud2 for this Logan Presents 3rd Anniversary accolade.
With our clubbing companion Miss Cougar accompanying us and what was a mere fifteen minute journey from the centre of town to our destination, The O2 Arena, negotiating the dome itself then finding the entrance to Proud2 proved a little less straight forward than our tube trip, but when we had completed our semi circular cycle, we were presented with a pretty efficient entry, save for a coatcheck queue that seemed to take longer than the score length justified. But with that formality over with, we were into Proud2 proper and immediately looking to find our bearings, a developing crowd beginning to spread out into the main room space, while we took ourselves up the first of many stairwells leading to the first floor & walkway that enveloped the sizeable space below. Pausing at the bar to collect refreshments for our companion, it wasn’t long before a ferry full of familiar faces began to present themselves to us, Tom Marchant grabbing much of our immediate attention, the long list extending to many more, including the two Ross’s, Paterson & Resicgno, Jorge Branco, & Ariel Mayer while the likes of DJ Alessandro Londra & Nathan 6 also stopped us in our tracks, we slightly aggrieved that we had missed out on Nathan’s opener of a set as he has always been a talent that has impressed us on a number of levels, he surely having done a sterling job in getting this anniversary event going.
With much of the greetings over with, it was time to focus on the party in hand, we deciding to take our position by the catwalk style stage that jutted out from the existing performance area, the D.J. booth to its right being occupied by the first of two international guests, Aaron the man in charge now, while AB Garcia would assume the decks much later into the event. But, while we were soaking up the superb scene, our playful partner in crime was acting out his cougar characteristics capriciously, first coming at us with his clawed fingers, very much hinting towards the first of two P.A. performers and then started burrowing under the curtain wrapped stage to see what was there, we calling him back to our spot in an embarrassed instant. And, as it materialised, we called him back just in time, as within seconds, a rope & ring dropped from the ceiling and a trapeze artist commenced to wow the attentive audience with his wonderful acrobatics, this the first of two simply spectacular showings that added just one of many of those star spangled elements that we had been expecting. And as soon as he was done, the stage proper erupted into life, pyrotechnic rockets & flaming effects framing the dozen or so dancers that filled the stage & catwalk, impressive LED displays lining the back of the performing area, lasers & other lighting exploding what had been a pretty sedate affair into an action packed anniversary adventure of the three years of Logan Presents, visuals chronicling the history of happenings for all to see.
However, it was clear to us that it was the performing artists that the crowd had really come to see, the stage shows as spectacular as they were, a simple side show to the stars that were due to perform, Kitty Brucknall the first to make an impression, rising up from beneath the stage extension, gripping her microphone tightly and then belting out a series of renditions that, if we are brutally honest, we couldn’t recognise, her struts up & down the catwalk commanding enough attention, the smoke plumes & pyro’s also adding plenty of pomp & circumstance, although for us, her performance lacked sufficient substance and dare we say it, the X factor. But in stark contrast, Rebeka Brown was simply spectacular, stunning, awesome, brilliant & magnificent, plus all the other adjectives in the dictionary available to describe her two stage showings. Treating us to a catalogue of her hits, her latest “Big Bad Bitch” included which was all the more appropriate as she had two female dancers on stage with her, both crouching to each side as she intimated abusive treatment, other songs she sang including “Sun Rising Up” and a fabulous favourite of ours “Offshore”, which brought more than a few emotionally joyful tears to our eyes, while she absolutely nailed both “We Found Love” & “Save The World Tonight”, the powerful elegance of her voice the virtual opposite to Kitty’s shrills, Rebeka’s stage presence delightfully domineering & masterfully executed, while her predecessor’s was whimpish in her wake, the chalk & cheese comparison to the two difficult to avoid, while we would go as far as saying that Ms Brown’s performance was the best we have seen in a club ever & anywhere, even topping Peyton’s New Year showing at WE, the goose bumps running all over our body evidence to just how thrilling & roof lifting it was.
Rebeka aside, the other spectacular star of this anniversary accolade was Tony English, this delightful D.J. nestling his set between the two P.A. performances and really setting the place alight with his scintillating sound selections, the brilliant balance between euro come Spanish style beats with more upfront house, a couple of classics from yesteryear thrown in for good measure, including “Downpipe” & “Situation”. And unlike Aron who, for us looked quite miserable behind the decks (Miss Cougar thought he was going to cry), Tony was clearly enjoying every minute of his moments in the Logan presents spotlight, throwing all his energy into his performance and clearly understanding that, as the musical focal point, he was very much on stage in everybody’s eyes. As for the roll call of other D.J.’s, well AB Garcia put in a solid set which started with a recent favourite of ours, Avicii’s “Levels”, while the planned room two didn’t get off to a start, although this did mean that the equally planned boogie with one of its mainstay’s, Nick Tcherniak, was shunted forward in our agenda a little. And, while calls from afar were trying to tug us away from Proud2 & back to Vauxhall, we saw out virtually the whole of the rest of event, before retiring into very nippy early morning, to make the more drawn out journey home and reflect on a night that had plenty more highs than we were expecting hours before.
So yes, before you ask, this celebration cake of an event did rise to the occasion, added to which, having fended off a fury of folks after the event, seeking our opinion on this Logan presents 3rd Anniversary outing, the next thing we would say is that no amount of words can do justice to the resounding role that Rebeka played in making this a more than worthwhile venture out east, she matching her brilliant billing every single step of the way and in doing so elevating this from what could easily have been an also ran to an absorbing & engaging event. On top of that, the stage setting, the production, the effects, the lighting & the venue itself also lived up to our expectations and in some respects, the LED displays especially, exceeded them, while the acrobatic displays by that amazing athlete, trapeze artist, whatever you want to call him, was another huge highlight, the beauty of his balances, the suppleness of his spins & his handling of the ropes & rings truly tremendous, all adding to a delectably dynamic dimension & drama to this dancing delight of a Logan Presents devotion. Yes we could mention the fact that the club wasn’t packed, although the numbers certainly weren’t anything close to tardy and yes, we could go on & on about the fact that this should have, could have & would have been a history making & ground breaking event had George Michael been there, but the plain fact of the matter is that he wasn’t, so with professional dexterity, rather than dwelling on it, Logan put this sorry situation to one side, making the show & spectacle go on in the best possible way and for that alone we have to salute him. But moreover, we have to commend him for being bold enough to offer the scene something daringly different, Mr Schmitz proving to us that he still knows how to throw a prolific party & a spectacular show, so we look forward to him being back in that spotlight he should be standing in, and before very long at that. (DISCO MATT)
Both “Industri” & “G&T” may not now be with us, but 2011 will definitely be the year of the social soiree, “Society” taking its turn within this terrific trend, although “Room Service” showing the way for the rest to follow. But there was no following, rather the development of a brilliant brand that resulted in the success story that was Gigolo this year, but how did it fair on its return to the soiree scene earlier this month?
With the year seeing the rise & rise of the of the social soiree, well perhaps more accurately the growing popularity of a certain gathering on Soho’s Greek St, it came as no surprise that others would crave for a slice of this clubbing start to the weekend cake, some setting up their stalls but then hardly getting through the gates, while one particular outfit pitched their plan perfectly, the high quality & eye catching promotion that had made its nemesis so successful from the outset, paying considerable dividends for this new kid on the block neighbour. Yes, Gigolo’s launch & then appearance on the scene seemed to bolster Thursday night’s rather than divide what captive audience there was, Soho very much the place to be, many sharing allegiances, while others lay their hat on the Gigolo stand, promoters David & L.a. Hart compiling a residency D.J. team balanced between exciting new talent & experienced scene figures, that along with extra effort on production & even live shows, all making this Thursday frolic on Wardour St a superb success from the start.
However, with sympathetic cries of “no, not again”, it seemed that both David & L.a.’s fate for their clubbing success fortunes laid in the hands of others, as, with a cruel twist of fate and with little or no warning, they lost their venue home seat on Wardour Street, as a result consigning what had been one of the true highlight happenings of the year, to the clubbing calendar archives. But as the saying goes, you can’t keep a good guy (or in this case guys) down and within weeks of disappearing out of eyeshot, the boys were back & tempting us with a return to the scene, building up hopes & expectations as they had done prior to Gigolo’s launch, creating that buzz & excitement that had existed before, but craftily keeping much if not all of the detail under wraps. However, with the date indelibly inked in our diary, pretty much nothing would deter us from making it down to the Gigolo re-launch, not even the news that it had switched from a Thursday to a Sunday, not even that it would mean digging into our energy banks after romps at WE “Disco” & Beyond and not even that the clubs new home was The Shadow Lounge, a venue we have always found difficult to acclimatise to.
So, shaking off the ravages of only our second weekend back on the capitals clubbing circuit after an ill health enforced absence, Gigolo’s “Cumback” event was to mark the third foray in just eighteen hours, our arrival at not long tuned 7 p.m. (yes it was at the t’dance timing) met with a warming welcome on the door, a sweep down the staircase revealing a Shadow Lounge scant with socialites, those missing up to now probably a bit like us, partied out from a hectic WE weekend. But we were soon to be perked up as L.a. greeting us with open arms, while but (or should we say “butt”) was very much the word, as the cute & cheeky porn star Ben Brown was baring that bubble butt of his to David’s looming lens, the fabulous photography that had always been part & parcel of Gigolo rolled out resplendently. And looking around, while we were still not convinced about the Shadow Lounge as a host for this happening, the private booths certainly seemed to work well with the Gigolo ethos, although that dreadful sunken dancefloor created a void that was always going to be a gap wider than Watford’s to fill. That said, the seductive red lighting, together with the opulent feel of the place did certainly tick a lot of Gigolo’s boxes, so we could see why the boys had chosen this as their new resting place.
Now it was to the bar to seek refreshments and catch up with our clubbing companion Miss Cougar, the service we received from the “un-attendant” barman leaving little to be desired (another reason we score Shadow Lounge lowly), although with new(ish) D.J. boy in town, Norbert M, selecting the disco tipped tunes and the captivating conversation from our cougar clubber keeping us awake & attentive, even the tardy turnout so far wasn’t going to dampen our spirits. And those spirits certainly received a surge when the magnificent Mariusz bounded over to give us a huge hug to rival those we get from the likes of Oliver M & (the best in the business) Rob Ferguson, the body boogie’s plus the bawdy bravado Mr Mariusz was letting loose, giving rise to the much needed energy surge in our soul that we had been looking for. Mind you that surge was to get yet further boosts with the arrival of a host more of friendly & familiar faces, gorgeous Greek Nik the first, then the adorable Andrea together with her bevy of beauty entourage the next, her usual greeting including the words “f*** right off yaaaah” & those two fingers, reducing us to fits of laughter for the second time in a day.
However, as good as all the company was & as good as this Gigolo “Cumback” event was becoming, it would all pale in comparison to its & our star turn, the cute yet commandingly capable Zach Burns, his arrival & the assumption of the decks, the real lift we had been looking for, this terrific talent who had impressed us from the moment we first saw him play, immediately setting about sorting a selection of sounds that would hook us for the whole heavenly two hours of his spectacular showing. And with tracks that included “Music In My Soul”, “Last Night A DJ”, & “Here Comes The Rain”, these along with a magical multi mixing moment when Zach chose to combine “Stupdidsco” & “Don’t Go” with mesmeric effect, we were going nowhere, rather glued but spinning on our spot right next to the D.J. booth, Andrea, her entourage, Miss Cougar & the Polish posse all doing the same. Then with yet more treats in store, Danny Verde’s track “Open Your Heart among them, it was no surprise we were drawing comparisons of the brilliant Mr Burns to our other top draw D.J., Steve Pitron, the duo having played out pulsatingly just a handful of weeks ago at “Playtime”, even the occasional looks Zach was giving us over The Shadow Lounge decks akin to those we get from our other superstar spinner.
But, like all good things, Zach’s set came to an end far too quickly, his curtain call also signifying ours on this Gigolo event, although not before taking in the rather extravert yet interesting pole dance display by a leather clone queen to stripped off to close on the altogether, incumbent D.J., Italian guest GSP taking the music in a different direction, that alternative element that Gigolo’s of old always seemed to have included, certainly satisfying once more. However, our energy levels were shot, the call to arms the following morning praying on the back of our minds and our desire to leave this “Cumback” event of a huge Zach Burns brewed high our overriding aim. So, having grabbed the attention of our superstar D.J. in the making, congratulating him on a simply stunning set, then saying our farewells to Norbert, Maruiusz & Miss Cougar, we retreated from this Gigolo gathering to wend our now weary way home and gather our reflective thoughts on a party with plenty of hopes & expectations, that delivered equal amounts of highs & memory making moments to muster.
So, in conclusion, what more can we add to what we have already said about this Gigolo “Cumback” event? Well, we would have to be honest by saying that pitching the party on a Sunday evening was always going to prove a tricky affair, that on top of the decision to choose The Shadow Lounge as a host venue. In fairness, we having nothing against the place per say and it is definitely true that the opulence, the style & those private booths suit the Gigolo package, but (dare we mention it again) that sunken dancefloor does nothing for us. That said, what Gigolo does offer in abundance, is a good looking crowd, plenty of enthralling entertainment and music to match any other social soiree we know, especially when you add the incredible ingredient that is Zach Burns. As you know, we have a real passion for D.J.’s & their art, so know a thing or two about the talents around town, so we can say with both the knowledge & the knowhow that is one young man that deserves to make it big (or should we say bigger) in 2012 and is an amazing asset that the Gigolo team should be very proud of indeed. As for Gigolo itself, well the brand has a strong enough identity to survive we hope, The Hart’s wise enough to pitch their parties in such a way that they continue to draw attractable attention and we will certainly be rubbing shoulders with it & them at Salvation come this New Years Day. (DISCO MATT)
While the curtains on another year in clubland capital may be drawing to a close, as the final month that is December begins to fizzle out, one thing is for sure, the magical memories from WE’s anniversary earlier this month have certainly not fizzled out in any way at all, as Disco Matt recalls on the delight that was “Disco”, a dynamic draw that definitely delivered, but to what exceptional extent?
Over the scores of years that we have been treading the capitals clubbing circuit boards, we have seen many brands come & go, so leaving an indelible impression on our minds, others fading into the background of our thoughts. We can recall plenty that opened with huge fanfare, like the first rocket in a firework display, then continuing to wow & wonder with every event explosion, while a host of others in our time stepped into to scene spotlight, shining as bright as a button, but soon fading like a bicycle light running out of its Duracell bunny juice. We have seen home grown clubs & events rise to the top of the tree, some stay right up there like a star atop a fir, while plenty of international protagonists have stormed the scene with big & bold intentions only to be cast aside like a toy that has outlived the play life of its demanding owner. But we can say, quite unequivocally, that the brand that did that scene storming just twelve months ago, finding itself wading through a freezing cold & snow capped capital, could never be compared to the toy cast off analogy, or the battery juice starved bunny, rather we can definitely relate to that huge fanfare reference, we can certainly see event explosions as part of this brands prolific package and we could even be as bold to suggest that it has won over the hearts of even its staunchest critics, making it one of the biggest & best on the capitals clubbing calendar.
There is no doubt that Spanish superclub brand WE captured the imagination of clubbers from the minute it was launched from its home in Madrid, London part of the success story pretty much from the start too, last year’s launch very much impressing on all levels, the huge LED (and we are talking gigantic here) superbly stunning, the production as prolific as we have seen at any time in our considerable clubbing career and the music matching these other elements with every brilliant beat. Yet while London was immediately rated by WE’s top cheese, Victor Pallas, as second only to Madrid in terms of all these qualities, as 2011 kicked off in “Attack” mode, expectations were high, although P.A. Peyton delivered like a dream, while mainstay resident D.J. Carlos Gallardo has been a constant that has seen successive parties continue were to first left off, incarnations “Heroes”, “Prison Of Love” but particularly “Candy” breaking the brilliance bank and in doing so, assuring WE’s future for at least the time being in the minds of the fickle clubbing crowd that is so much a part of the capitals scene. And while we doubted the intentions of the last “I Love” party, others did not, as the place (like virtually every other event before it) was simply packed, very much paving the way for WE to celebrate its 1st Anniversary in London in the knowledge that it would command a captive audience both amply & admirably.
So it was to The Coronet in Elephant & Castle that we headed, saying to ourselves that what a difference a year makes, those freezing cold conditions we endured back then a stark contrast to the more mild weather we were warming to as we arrived at the venues doors, the considerable queue stretching much further than the eye could see, although with the crowd management maestro in charge, who else but Tom Fuller, it was already apparent that non-one was going to wait that long to get in. Mind you with the scrum that was amazing around the brilliant Ben Kaye, we could hardly grab his attention, Tom peeling off from his duties for a minute to say hi & catch up, Aaron Elder also arriving and stepping in for Ben by getting us fast tracked through the entrance formalities, the standard security search the only element he couldn’t help us avoid, close pal Steve Pitron already inside & awaiting our arrival with his usual expectant intent. But before we could make contact with him, with his beau Celso & the beautiful Brazilian babe Bel, we had to dispose of our coat, a formality that took mere moments which was immediately followed by us falling directly into the path of our party people pals, Steve greeting us with the usual “MAAATTTT” call, Bel following suit, while the hugging embrace from Celso was as warm a welcome as we could ever imagine. With the mood already magnificent, an arriving Andrea was only going to elevate it further, her trademark hilarious greeting “…you can f** right off yaaaah…” sending us into fits of laughter, the fun erupting even further when the close quarter quintet we found ourselves within, made it down to the front of The Coronet’s massive main room dancefloor, both Steve & Bel chasing us up & down like school kids in a playground, our shrills & screams attracting amassing attention, incumbent D.J. Jamie Head then grabbing ours as we got a grip of our already excitable emotions.
With this “Disco” delight of an anniversary now well under way and the dancefloor filling out with fervent WE followers before our eyes, we assumed our spot, well a position here at the Coronet better known as “The Brazilian bunch & Andrea corner”, although not before a plethora of party animals passed us by, including the amazing Altina Ha, dressed provocatively for the occasion, although it was the priceless look on Bel’s face that stole this (one of many) magical moment. But while the continual cheeky surprises by the dastardly duo of Mr Steve & Miss Sbardelotto saw us scurrying screaming & embarrassed as we bumped into more surprised familiar faces, we also were determined to delve into dives of “Doing The Disco Matt” moves, Jamie making the task all the more easier with his colossal choices, not least the brilliant “You Better”, which definitely hit the mark. Mind you, the Brazilian bunch were helping us along too, the endearing Eduardo particularly so, the stage showing still yet to ignite into LED & delectable dancer action, although it was already displaying plenty “Disco” delights leaving us in the expectation that we would be suitably stunned, while our excitable bubbles were bursting boisterously & bountifully, D’Johnny adding to the amazing action as he assumed control of the WE Anniversary D.J. decks, delivering as dynamically as he had done of so many Coronet occasions in the past.
Now a brief respite for all this audacious action was required, not least to keep our iron lung from imploding, so we took our temporary leave of the WE main auditorium to ascend up into the Room Service space, soon succumbing to the rapturous reception of Jodie Harsh & Kris Di Angelis, our pal of many years playing a storming electro twisted set that had us spinning in an instant, reports coming in that Fat Tony followed in his footsteps flaunting a fantastic set that kept this select space swinging. But, the WE wonderment downstairs was drawing us back, although not before stairwell encounters with foxy female Emma “Miswhite” White who was to later impart on us her pretty vocal views on the quality of the main room music, with the handsome & hunky Nick Ripley, as well as super Spaniard Louis and a dashing but soon departing Mr Pitron who was retiring home to prepare for another brilliant Beyond pitch perfect performance (but that’s for another review!). However, with that expectant stage reveal already complete, we quickly found ourselves in our VIP vantage point, taking in the towering tech triumph that were those WE trademark LED displays, discoball effects, WE sliding signage & plenty more besides captivating us with their colourful castings, the dancers doing their bit to make this stage showing quite stunning, D’Johnny in the zone with a scintillating set that included his own re-work of one of our tunes of 2011, “You Will Remember”, while when he bowed out to WE Spain resident Manuel De Diego, our usual disappointment with his delectations was replaced with applause as he picked on Avicii’s “Levels” to start his stint, before dipping into deeper more euro-beat music melodies that, unlike his previous performance, was very much hitting the mark.
But besides all this, we were wondering what birthday surprises this anniversary event would have in store, although this was soon answered with the surprise arrival of prolific P.A. Peyton, whose appearance caught us a little off guard, the usual electricity of his presence a little lacking compared to that awesome “Attacks” amazement that had left us well & truly breathless in admiration, perhaps the absence of Carlos Gallardo accounting for Mr Christopher’s out of character orations. And from there onwards we found ourselves simply attempting to stay the pace of this “Disco” devoted party, encounters with Room Service’s JJ, doing a sterling job hosting both spaces, while Tom Fuller & Aaron kept us equally occupied & engrossed in what was, in fairness, another fabulous WE foray fantastique, the host of familiar faces making the magical memories on this occasion, a final fling on the dancefloor encouraged by the enigmatic Eduardo, whose invite to join him was a temptation no one could resist. However, we an eye towards the official WE anniversary afterparty and being under strict Steve starting orders, we graced our exit of this exceptional event, waving our goodbye’s to the Brazilian bunch, to Bel & Tom, heading home for a brief respite before succumbing to that pulsating Pitron performance.
So what was our verdict on this WE 1st anniversary event? Did it meet expectations? or were we expecting too much?, Well, we cannot deny that it has firmly established itself as the premier international clubbing brand in the capital, totally outstripping both SuperMartXe & Matinee which have floundered in the WE wake, yet we cannot escape the fact that, having established this primary position, there is a nagging concern of a touch of complacency creeping in. Yes the LED displays were simply stunning, yes the music was up there with the best we have seen in any WE party, yes The Coronet as a host venue continues to deliver in many respects and yes, you cannot argue with the numbers & footfall that festooned what we have already described as a fabulous foray, so all things considered perhaps we were expecting a bit too much, after all, the host of people we spoke to following the event remarked just how good it was. Plus, we certainly has our fair share of fun, our close companions Steve, Celso, Bel & Eduardo making for magical memories that certainly made this showing stand-out, but we still have a question in our mind that “Disco” fell slightly short of the anniversary accolade audacity we were looking for, perhaps we taking WE’s greatness a little too much for granted or that the “Candy” event earlier in the year was so spectacular that we are being hyper critical as a result. That said, we are sure that WE will be drawing us back very soon and once again showing the capitals clubbing crowd that is can throw one of the most prolific parties in town. (DISCO MATT)