Posts Tagged ‘Electric Brixton’
It may be a good two weeks down the line, but this exceptional event at Electric is as fresh in our minds today as it was when we waved it goodbye in the early hours of that Sunday morning. Were you there? Did you get a mention? Or what did you miss out on? Well there’s only one way to find out….
When we think of afterhours clubbing these days, the one word that tends to spring to mind first is Beyond, the brand that has pretty much dominated Sunday mornings for the last decade, while the real pioneer of afterhours was Trade, although if we were to dig deeper into the afterhours market, there are a whole host that fall into this bracket, whether it be a Friday, a Saturday, a Sunday or even a Monday morning, names that spring to mind including FF & Warriors of old, while Gravity & A:M still push those out of hours boundaries today. That said, it is rare for any of these clubs to successfully switch their format to a regular timing slot, save perhaps for special occasions like bank holidays, Easter & Christmas, although there is one that has bridged that gap & made that successful step on many occasions. Indeed, since its inception a good thirteen years ago now, this brilliant brand has not just played out to party heads on Saturdays, Sundays & Mondays, but has also successfully switched venues, finding its feet wherever it goes, a feat that many a competitor club looks upon with a great deal of envy.
Orange, when it was launched back in 1998 was a pretty small scale club, its first home in Rotherhithe a converted pub, although with advent of the clubbing venue we now know as Fire, this citric splendour really found its feet and became the ruin of many a Monday morning of ours, the decadent feel that we used to get from the halcyon Sunday sessions of Trade, very much being taken over by Orange. However, as times have gone by, our trips to this Monday madcap meet have been pretty much restricted to special occasions, not least when it has switched from its now natural home to sister venue Area for the famed bank holiday specials. But the wonderful clubbing word of Orange has extended further than just Vauxhall, a succession of showings at The Fridge in Brixton in recent years marking brilliant bank holiday bashes that carry magical memories for many. So, when we heard that this mega Monday morning meet would be making a one-off return to the revamped iconic venue in SW2, now known as Electric, we were keen to see what this party prospect would plunder, not least how the venue would shape up after the building site that was Brava.
So, with this in mind, along with headline D.J. Steve Pitron wanting to make sure everything was in place for his performance, we headed down to Brixton, late afternoon on the day of the event, this flying visit allowing us to take a look at Electric in its now finished state, the difference immediately noticeable from the foyer right through the whole space, a quick inspection of the toilets, along with the bar spaces, seeing a tenfold improvement in the place. With Steve also relatively happy with the positioning of the D.J. booth centre stage in the main auditorium, a brief conversation with the promotions management confirming that all the necessary equipment would be in place in time. With our brief pre event visit over, it was now a case of planning our arrival time to soak up the starting segment of this citric Saturday splendour, our arrival back at Electric at just before midnight seeing us greeted by the ever present Tom Fuller who was orchestrating the developing queue magnificently, the larger than life figure of hostess Chrissy Darling, resplendent in an orange coloured outfit, she spotting us & immediately breaking out into her usual song greeting “…I wanna take a ride on the Disco Matt…”, while a flurry of text messages from Mr Pitron were urging us to “…come…”, “…come inside…”, “MAAAAATTT come inside….” although it was his previous message, “…Alyson is here, she could be anywhere…” that was stopping us in our tracks, the thought of “the porridge woman” at large, consuming us with frightful fear, Tom even remarking that Steve had arrived with two females.
However, putting best foot forward we made it inside, immediately heading for the main room bar area, which was already awash with a developing crowd, our steps of trepidation vindicating themselves when we were caught by both Steve & Bel, sending us running & screaming around the club, the looks on the faces of those around us saying it all. However, with no sign of Alyson, we soon calmed down & concentrated on the task in hand, soaking it this citric Saturday splendour, a glance over to the stage seeing The Oli in charge of the tunes, warming up the party brilliantly with his barnstorming beats, proving, yet again what a hot ticket talent he is (and pretty hot in the looks dept too!). Mind you we weren’t the only ones remarking on the impression he was making, Bel seemingly spellbound by his superb set, no surprise as Oli was certainly packing powerful punch with his prolific performance, the dancefloor soon filling with party goers & the atmosphere lifting with every terrific track selection after the next. This distraction pause from the mischievous intentions of a playful Mr Pitron gave us the opportunity to give the venue another once over, the improvement since the building site of Brava noticeable, not least that all the renovations had been finished, the ceiling looking magnificent with a multi-tiered mirrorball as the centre-piece, all the Victorian arcitrading returned to its former glory and, more importantly, all the infrastructure, like toilets, bars, seating areas & corridors completed & decorated.
With Steve having grabbed us a back stage pass, the time was nearing for his set showing, our privileged viewpoint from behind the D.J. booth allowing us to see the full extent of the club in front of us and the view Mr Pitron was getting during his performance. And by golly what another dynamic delivery of dance delectations he delighted us and a now near capacity Electric crowd to, a magnificent mixture of classics, classics rehashed & up to date hits, cleverly interwoven into a scintillating string of sounds, one track after next sending us into a spin behind the stage along with a boisterous Bel and now a handful of photographers, one with a video camera in his hand catching our “Doing The Disco Matt” moves on film. And this was no surprise given the track choices Steve was making, first “Last Night A D.J. Saved My Life” (Mr Pitron was definitely doing this tonight!) followed by “Shine On Me”, these just two examples of the classic tunes both the vent & its headline player had promised. But, these were balanced by more up to date tracks too, crowd pleasers for sure, “Live Your Dreams” one of them and “Pressure” another, both which, as they always do, sent us headlong into that tearful & emotional rollercoaster ride, while our vantage point right behind Steve was the best we could have asked for.
But while we were enjoying & lapping up our select stage spot, we were also keen to mingle with the masses, our trip down onto the dancefloor immediately sending us into the path of the adorable Andrea, her welcome as affectionately hysterical as always, her catchphrase “…you can f*** right off…” hitting that hysterical high. However, what moving down here also did was to put us in pole position for the stage show which was erupting before our eyes, Elektra & her dreamy dancers hitting the Orange Electric stage to plumes of pyro’s & loads of lasers, Steve timing the musical fanfare we had been privy to earlier that evening to perfection. Then, as if we were called to take a further retreated view of proceedings, a timely text from Tom Fuller saw us clamber through the crowd & head to the bar, our liege immediately remarking on our lack of an orange coloured t-shirt (oops) while with all the emotion of the Pitron performance along with the presence of Onyx promoter Verity Mayes, we were pleased with the distraction, at least for this short while.
Mind you, the night was far from over and we had the remaining beats of Steve’s scintillating set to soak up, a return to our privileged position seeing out the remaining moments of his prolific performance, more terrifically classical tunes & more modern mixes, finishing with the incredible “Sunset To Sunrise” our possible replacement for “Offshore”, all this emotion leaving us to cough & splutter like a rusty engine, our iron lung having gotten its first dance workout in weeks. But that workout was far from over, as with Fat Tony now in charge of the Orange Electric decks, the playful chases by both Bel & Steve ensued, chases across the back of the stage and round the bar area which we found ourselves retiring to once again, the looks on peoples & security guards faces as we ran & screamed, an absolute picture, while hiding behind Steve’s beau Celso wasn’t the protection we needed, the playful pranks going on for much of the remainder of our stay. But, the time to leave was now knocking, the host of familiar faces including the delectable Dorin & Kyri, the fabulous Franck, the magnificent Mauricio, the marvelous Minty along with Michael Peacock & plenty more besides, were not enough to hold us, the call to work playing on our minds, meaning a curtain call on the outstanding Orange outing to sink home & reflect on our resplendent return to the clubbing circuit in the hands of this heavenly happening.
Well, we tweeted, we danced & we socialised, there was emotion, there was fun & there were tears and in a strange sort of way that kind of sums up this Orange Electric event, as it pretty much had it all, not least the captivating crowd of friendly & familiar faces that made this, our return to clubbing after a six week absence, the best we could have wished for. But more than that, we have to hand it to the venue management for transforming Electric from the building site it was for Brava to the fantastically finished product we found it this time round, while the promotions team did a sterling job in showcasing Orange in super scale & on a Saturday to boot. That aside, our evening was very much made by a handful of incredible individuals mentioned, top of the prolific pile going to Steve Pitron who played out a scintillating set packed with magical memory making moments that, in combination with that privileged position we were so honoured to have, will remain in our minds eye for a long time to come. So here’s to Orange as a clubbing brand, here’s to everyone involved in this exceptional event and here’s to what was most definitely an evening of “emotionally engrossing euphoria”. (DISCO MATT)