Posts Tagged ‘Severino’
As we lament over what should have been a sortie to the southern hemisphere, we rather finding ourselves lame in London, when it comes to our “Pick of The Day” for today (Sun 10th March), lame simply doesn’t come into the equation as far as our champion choice is concerned, Horse Meat Disco’s near legendary status making our selection simple & straightforward, further club/event details a “Pick of The Day” banner click away opposite or an image one below, while we saddle up to serenade this superb soiree beneath
When it comes to staying the distance, fulfilling every furlong, jumping a clear and cantering over the weekly finishing line with a flourish, there can be no club that fits the bill better than Horse Meat Disco, the marvellous meet that, week in week out, packs in not only its fervent followers, but plenty more looking to end their weekend on a horsin’ around high. And having been in business for a decade, no mean feat in this day & age, Jim Stanton & his superb stable mates have created a club that will, without doubt, go down as one of the greats of the capitals clubbing circuit. Yet the formula has been simple from the start, based on superb sounds and equally stimulating socialising in an environment that engenders fun & frivolity, the cornerstone of this cavorting canter of a club. Indeed with the resident D.J. foursome that is Severino, Luke Howard, James Hillard & Jim Stanton, you could ask for a more terrific team, the funky, nu, Italio, NYC & retro disco mixed in with more upfront house, Horse Meat Disco’s soundtrack & beats of beeches brook build with their brilliance.
Yet, despite all this, it seems that Horse Meat Disco all too often falls below many clubbers radar’s, although if you are Vauxhall bound on a Sunday night, it is by far the best place to be, the massive queues outside host venue The Eagle speaking their own volumes, while scores of customer comments like “…thanks for Sunday – a brilliant, lovely time yet again…” add weight to what is already a real gem capitals clubbing circuit schedule. But the Horse Meat Disco story, as good as it is with this weekly wonder where it is, extends much further, as both Friday’s & Saturday’s see it guesting in a string of Shoreditch shindigs, while Brighton is also a popular annual destination for Jim, James & the HMD team, while back home on Kennington Lane, the clubs bank holiday bashes are, just like Horse Meat Disco itself, are of near legendary status, the numbers flocking to the doors justifying a venue twice the size to accommodate. And our ensuring memories of this magnificent meet lie in the early years of the club when, in the company of Minty, Paul Heron & Guy Williams, we would dance till near dawn with hardly a care for the following day, that’s how captivating the club is and one that richly deserves our horsy title, “Gold Cup Cavorting”, as it is every bit as compelling as the Cheltenham festival we refer to.
So, Horse meat Disco gets our “Pick Of The Day” vote and one we cannot recommend enough, meaning if you want to be & be seen on the scene this Sunday night, then head to The Eagle in Vauxhall, but get there early to avoid the inevitable queues, naturally making sure you “Go There!” “Be There!”. (DISCO MATT)
For over nine years it’s been storming Saturday mornings, pushing the mid to late A.M. boundaries, but the club of the same name is about to embark of the biggest change its history, shifting into Friday as well as Saturday, A:M going all “Ultra” on us from tonight (Fri 2nd Nov), meaning it not only makes our “Pick Of The Day” but gives us reason to “Focus Extra” on the event, all the detail a banner selection away opposite or an image click below, while we cast our own eye on this dynamic development beneath
When we look across the diverse & dynamic gay scene’s across the near continent, there are a few brands that tend to stick out, many that have been pushing the boundaries for well over ten years, there’s La Demence in Brussels, celebrating 23 years in business this weekend, , Muccassassina in Rome equally as established, finding itself into its 23rd season, while the resplendent Red & Blue in Antwerp is not that far behind, cracking open the champagne on 1st December, marking its 14th anniversary, although what all these have in common is that they are the single most outstanding brands in their respective cities.. However, here in the capital, the prolific clubbing picture is somewhat more significant, as we have a whole host of brands that have notched up that double figure in business landmark, just last weekend seeing Trade celebrate its 22nd birthday, while Orange is, in just two weeks, marking its 14th, Beyond already deep into its 11th year storming the scene, all three not only iconic come legendary here in London, but are brilliant brands both known & active right around the globe. But there is a fourth, one that sits very much in the afterhours bracket like all the other three, yet just three months ahead of its 11th birthday, this club is about to embark the most dynamic & dramatic development in his history.
So which brilliant capital clubbing brand are we talking about?, well A:M of course, the club that has, singlehandedly been responsible for changing the Saturday mornings of masses of clubbers in the 10 years it has been pushing the boundaries of normality, as while the majority of men & women in the land consider heading out for the Saturday morning shop, A:M devotees week in week out trade the supermarket aisles for the dancefloor, partying deep into the sixth day of the week to the banging beats of a bevy of A:M resident stars. And during its 10 year history, we too have been found within the captivating confines of Fire on a Saturday morning, our most recent trip taking in the special guest splendours of Lottie, while many a moon ago, we would fall into A:M from our West London base with weekly regularity, that afterhours feel that we have adored since the days of Trade & then Beyond being replicated in its own wonderful way by the amazing A:M. Yet all this is set to change (or is it?) as the brand prepares itself to shift from just being a Saturday morning event to a full blown 10/12 hour happening each & every week, A:M embracing both Friday & Saturday in what the team ate calling an “Ultra” make-over come look and in doing so, introducing some exciting additions to the A:M package.
Now, before we make our own analysis & judgement on the changes afoot with A:M, perhaps its best to share what the promotions team have to say about this dramatic development in the A:M branding, they beginning by saying “…new beginnings are always something to celebrate, and with clubbing pedigree like ‘A:M’ it means something very exciting indeed…” the first exciting change being the incorporation of another brand into the A:M fold, the Friday night award winning club Onyx captured under this new “Ultra” umbrella, the team saying of this addition and how this new clubbing combination will look, “…bringing in a hot new line up and harnessing the strength of another Friday institution ‘Onyx’, A:M Ultra will revolutionise the start of the weekend with a super-size, super-production event from Friday night into the not-so-early hours of Saturday morning…”. But hold it right there, as did we read this right, A:M will, in its new “Ultra” form be a “not-so-early hours of Saturday morning” club?!?! And what does this mean for this much beloved Saturday morning mash-up?, well we will tackle that shortly, while back to the team talk, as they let us in on some of the new D.J. stars of this clubbing combo, “…our headline resident is none other than superstar producer Pagano, joined by D.J.’s including Severino, Paul Heron, Ariel, Matt Bogard & D’Johnny, delivering turbocharged house to Fire’s main floor. In room two it’s an Onyx takeover with the all star D.J.’s pumping out dirty pop anthems including Lady Lloyd, Adam Turner, DMS & Tasty Tim…” while there is more as “…Raul Gonzalez returns to the A:M fold bringing his stunning dance troupe and injecting some Spanish glamour to the weekend, alongside the freshest hosts and special performers…” while the team are launching a “…hot new VIP space the Skylounge, hosted by JJ Clark, offering a place to sip Champagne and oversee the dancefloor of Fire’s rocking main room…” as well as promising “…regular pop up clubs, incredible drinks deals, massive smoking area, hot new décor and loads more…”.
So exciting times for A:M for sure and in the hands of a man who we easily describe as THE most capable & competent club promoters on the capitals circuit, Steven Sharp, A:M in this new “Ultra” format is sure to go from strength to strength. Indeed, since taking over the brand just under a year ago, Steven has made subtle changes to A:m that has seen it rekindle the purple patch years of its earlier times, the club very much about the music, he having brought some superb special guests, Paul Harris, Smokin Jo & (of course) Lottie just three examples, while with residents such as Jamie Head, Paul Heron, David Jimenez & D’Johnny, the music is on the tougher side of house but clearly continues to hit the mark with A:M’ers far & wide. Therefore this marvellous music policy can only get even better with the introduction of stars such as Pagano & Severino, while with a totally different poptastic feel in the newly formed Onyx second space, there should genuinely be something for everyone, whether Friday frolick’ers or Saturday shimmy’ers. That said, we have to note a caution concern as, for us, A:M was always about that decadent feel of clubbing deep into Saturday morning, pushing those normality boundaries & having a resultant feel of fabulous naughtiness, while in this new format and being a “…not-so-early hours…” club, we fear that that is a real danger that A:M will lose that exciting edge and rather become a mainstream & conformist club, although flipping the analytic coin, we have to concede that in these times of austerity, the team have reacted by not quite landing the downward spiralling Onyx on its sword, but giving it a new lease of life by combining it with a brand that has been on the up & up & bucking the trend of the former.
With our analysis not yet complete, lets pause to run through the detail of this A;M “Ultra” which takes place tonight (Fri 2nd Nov) at Fire in Vauxhall, doors opening at 11 p.m. and the club running through to the advertised “Superlate” timing which we hope means the usual 11 a.m. finish but suspect sadly that it may be a little earlier. While we are told advance tickets are available via the new Orange Nation website at http://orangenation.co.uk, entry on the door is still the best way to go with A:m, especially when you pick up a flyer or ad as the team are offering free (yes FREE!) entry before midnight, while the same flyer or ad will get you discounted £6 entry before 3a.m., otherwise it £10/£12 during these times. Plus, with the A:M promotions team out in force across Soho & Vauxhall, we reckon that some special entry offers will be up for grabs, especially if the terrific Tom Fuller is masterminding the flyer team (as we are reliably informed he is tonight), while those drinks offers mentioned earlier mean it’s never an expensive affair for your A:M trip, the added bonus of hosts Hrh Minty, Danny Boyce Louise Port & JJ Clark mean you will be in heavenly & charming clubbing hands from start to finish, more info available by visiting the Orange Nation website, by hitting promoter Steve Sharp’s page at http://facebook.com/steven.r.sharp.1 or by checking out the event page at http://facebook.com/events/296615937120263/. As for that analysis of ours, well while there is definitely loads of positives to draw on, the combo of Onyx into A:M one, the introduction of new resident D.J.’s as a result another, the potentially extended hours of the A:M ethos an exciting prospect, given that this new “Ultra” format has been labelled as a “Friday revolution”, we fear the emphasis will be taken away from Saturday meaning that A:M is we have known & loved it will be no more, meaning the DM jury is out on this new format although the proof of the pudding will be in the eating, meaning, despite this reservation, the new look A:M receives our rapturous recommendation meaning we can simply say that to eat that prolific “Ultra” pudding you need to “Go There! Be There!” (DISCO MATT)
Variety has always been the spice of life & with plenty of spice being served up this Saturday by Shoreditch son Kris Di Angelis & his gang, Disco Matt heads east in choosing “War”, which takes place tonight (Sat 14th April) at East Bloc in Shoreditch, as his pick of the day, all the detail a banner selection away opposite or an image click below, while Kris gives his own take on this alternative antic beneath.
Kris says of this enthralling event….
WAR…….HOT BOYS DO IT HARD!
The biggest party East Bloc’s ever known is back!!….Our launch saw absolutely every hot boy in town try to get in….So, this time we’re going in even HARDER…. Get hot, get wet, get licked…
This winning team are here to beat the shit out of East Bloc with its combination of the Incredible DJs, in-demand hosts, the hottest crowd & the cheapest drinks, plus crazy antics including “Spin the Bottle” and “Demented Laughing Gas!”
We’ve taken on our new recruit – Ben Kaye from WE Party to look after the door for those in the know. Plus we have JJ Clark from Room Service looking after only the hottest boys inside, while Alex Collins of Meat fame will be terrorising the dance floor and the unstoppable Alex Palumbo pulling boys left, right and centre into his “Spin The Bottle” booth.
D.J. wise we have JoshyouAre from Circus dropping the first round of bombs in the “Warzone” room 1, followed by the phenomenal Severino (Horse Meat Disco, Room Service), the final wave of attack provided by me, Kris Di Angelis (Meat, Room Service, Circus). In the “Battlefield” Room 2, urban white boy Kingsley slams down a jaw dropping motown soul/funk set for those who know, followed by our super-guest Jodie Harsh, firing shots into the crowd from her specially created ‘Retro Rap Bitches’ set. Closing is our own War legend, Munroe Bergdorf, hitting hard with a classic R&B to 90′s dance vibe.
If that’s not enough you can take yourself to the Gas Station where Mad Dan is waiting for you with happy balloons…..if you were worried you wouldn’t have a good time….you can relax…2 bucks buys you hit of happy at our party!
So if you wanna get in, get on a list with one of the hosts, get there early, or be the hottest soldier in town because when it’s full it’s full and dude, it’s always full.
WAR @ East Bloc, 17 City Road, London, EC1V 1JN (nearest tube Old St)
Sat April 14th – 10.30pm to 6am
£8 before midnight, £12 thereafter.
Limited concession/paying guest lists via hosts
FREE SHOTS THROUGHOUT THE NIGHT
WAR PHOTOGRAPHY BY :ADAM KHADAROO:
As the scene shakes off the hangover resulting from the biggest weekend of the year so far, some sporting the spoils of success, others simply reflecting on what could have been, time rests for no man, victorious or defeated, so the scene steps forward into April, Disco Matt picking out his top of the tree three places to be stepping out on the scene in Soho, Vauxhall & Shoreditch.
What an Easter weekend that was, a whole host of parties & events recording terrific turnouts, some very much against the form book, while others that had promised so much, failed to deliver, our own weekend reflecting that situation a thrilling Thursday followed by a phenomenal Friday, led a superb Saturday night come Sunday morning , then turned into a soggy rest of a Sunday & a manically depressive Monday (and we aren’t talking weather here folks), Room Service, Society, Play>time, A:M & Beyond our real winners, while WE “Fluro” & As One ended up condemning what could have been a brilliant “big” weekend to our own review rubbish heap. But with the winners still to reap our reflections, it’s our coming weekend recommendations that get our immediate attention, our top of tree three places to be seen on the scene this weekend, our brief look at a trio of best bites across Soho Vauxhall & Shoreditch.
So, let’s get to it and to Soho first, it coming as little or no surprise to you regular readers of our recommendations, that it is Profile & Lo-Profile that gets our Best Bite pick here, having served us superbly well not just last weekend, but for much of March (well the whole year so far to be honest), the captivating combination of bar above & club below, very hard to beat, especially as both venues continue to draw in some of the scene top D.J. names, along with fresh new talent to tantalise & tickle your musical taste buds, while with now firmly established brands that include “Society”, “Play>Time”, “ClubNation” & “Beartrap”, that along with the might of Gaydar behind them, this delightful duo look set to, once again, prove to be the places to be & be seen on the Soho scene this weekend. So, with D.J. regulars Rob Sykes tonight (Fri 13th) and Jamie Head tomorrow (Sat 14th) upstairs in Profile, both kicking off the music from 8.30 p.m. through till the 11.30 p.m. finish, it is downstairs that gets our full if but briefer best bite attention, the award winning “Play>Time” up first, prolific promoter Jay Roberts back after (it has to be said0 probably THE best event in the brands history so far, but will be pulling out all the stops to top last week, not least that he welcomes fellow award winning D.J/producer & all round good egg Steve Pitron to the decks, along with cheeky chappy & a damn fine D.J. in his own right, Steven Artis. Add to that an ashes style porn star shoot out, as Brit boy Marco Sessions squares up to Aussie hunk Tate Ryder in a go-go dance off & back room play off, Jay your referee & you ((if you’re the luck one) caught in this sexy & seductive man hunk of a scrum, further details up in our “Pick Of The Day” post at http://discomatt.com/web/?p=5087. Then, tomorrow (Sat 14th) sees the return of “ClubNation” & also the return of Lee Harris, who will be performing a specially extended five hour set very much in the vein of his similarly named House Nation podcasts, which means you can expect plenty of uplifting, chunky & euphoric house hits, Lo-Profile swinging open its doors on both nights at 10.30 p.m. & running through until 4 a.m., entry & other details available by going to http://loprofile.com.
Onto Vauxhall now and there is lots going in within The Orange Group (or is that Orange Nation?!?) who grab our Best Bites slot this weekend, not least the breaking news that Onyx has been put out to grass for a while, so leaving a pretty vacant gap in the usually hectic schedule, although very much paving the way for A;M to possibly extend its opening hours, although more news on that to follow. However, one club that is definitely extending its hours this weekend & then henceforth, is Beyond, the new starting time of 3 a.m. every week looking like a pretty popular move, although only time will tell how successful a move this will actually be, our hope however, is that it consigns the all too often “Midnight” format to just the occasional & special scheduling. Add to the a mini shake up within the team of resident D.J.’s and as of going to press, we are not sure who will be playing come this Sunday morning (15th Apr), but reckon The Sharp Boys, Alan K, Fat Tony, The Oli & Paul Christian will surely be in situ, while Steve Pitron is taking a rest this weekend after his colossal classics set last, which pretty much stole the “XLsior” show. However, one party that we can be confident about when picking the D.J. & other line up, is the “Easter Thank-You” party at Fire tomorrow night (Sat 14th), as it’s all about award winners, D.J.’s The Sharp Boys, Junior Moura & (naturally) Steve Pitron, stepping into the spotlight, while there will be plenty of other guests, including D’Johnny & Paulo Moreno, to fill out the two rooms of fun, similarly award winning hosts Chrissy Darling & Elektra Paris sharing the duty plaudits, further details on this event out at http://facebook.com/events/356254587759955/, including opening times, door prices & guest list opportunities. But with Later & Orange completing the partying picture, it is another hectic weekend of activity in both Fire & Area, whiles the new jewel in the Orange Nation crown, Covert, prepares for its launch party in three weeks, more on that coming up in a special feature.
So to the third in our trio of top of the tree choices, this time seeing us head across to Shoreditch & to East Bloc, the hip & happening hangout on City Road, masterminded by the one & only Wayne Shires, he, the venue & all the brands its sports very much flying the alternative clubbing scene flag, a stable of showings including Gutterslut, SOS, The Men Who Fell 2 Earth, Paradise 45 & Dish, while regular Friday nighter, Super Electro Party Machine, which once again opens its doors tonight (Fri 13th Apr) from 10 p.m., is a great way to get your weekend going. However, our main focus of attention goes to Saturday night (14th Apr), when our very own Shoreditch son, Kris Di Angelis, rolls out a further instalment in the already soaring success story that is his new venture, “War”, a club that has pretty much be born out of the sad passing of “Meat”, the former club collaboration between Kris & Tom Stephan. And while Tom’s new prolific project, “Dish”, was in the Shoreditch spotlight last weekend, it’s the turn of “War “ this, Kris being joined in the “Warzone” main room by Severino & Joshyouare, while over in the “Battlefield” second space, its Jodie Harsh, Munroe Bergdorf & Kingsley shooting off the sounds. Plus with hosts JJ Clark, Jonathan Beastley, Ben Kaye & Alex Palemo, not only doesn’t it have a pseudo Room Service feel about it, be you can bet your bottom dollar that of cream of the east end girl to west end boy scene set will be out to wage wonderful clubbing & socialising war tomorrow night, doors at East Bloc (217 City Rd, nearest tube Old St.) opening at 10.30 p.m. & the club running through to a planned 6 a.m. finish, entry £8 before midnight & then £12 thereafter (so get there early folks), while free entry passes will be up for grabs at the “War” pre-party at Circa in Soho tonight (Fri 13th), more details on that coming up in our Short Shouts, while further info on “war” itself can be found by going to http://facebook.com/events/404481699576795/.
Now just before we go we thought, having not yet fully paid our respects to the sad loss to the scene of the gentle giant of the club promotions game, Steve Elliot, we would mention our upcoming tribute, “Salvation Star Much Missed”, to the man behind the international success of this brilliant brand in recent years, we looking back on his clubbing career & including fellow friend’s own tributes to this untimely & premature passing. Plus, with news this week that iconic drag queen Adrella has also been taken from us, our thoughts are very much with the families of both of these much treasured & already much missed pillars of the scene and we send our sincere wishes during what can only be the most difficult time for those that were close & dear to both Steve & Peter.
Right, that’s just about it for this Best Bites newsletter, but watch out for our Short Shouts part, “Shimmering Scene Seven”, while if you happen to lay your hat on one of our three here, then it is likely you may catch us too, “Play>Time” definitely on our schedule, while we are currently clearing the decks for either Fire or “War”, so keep your eyes peeled at http://twitter.com/discomatt for the live action as it happens & as we Go There! Be There!. (DISCO MATT)
While the emphasis on “The Big Easter Weekend Ticket” having propelled it’s trio of treats to the fore, there is little doubt that The Orange Group have plenty more on offer, a collective of clubs that carries you from Thursday to Monday, Disco Matt biting into the seven other Orange Nation Easter events that make this the biggest gay weekend this year yet.
Having shouted from the rooftops about “The Big Easter Weekend Ticket”, an outstanding Orange Group offer that encompasses three of its biggest brands, Beyond, WE & As One, one could be forgiven that Easter is all about this towering three course clubbing collective, although with a brand broom cupboard that is literally bursting at the seams, there is, in fact, plenty more on offer from the capitals most comprehensive clubbing corporations. So with The Orange Group very much holding sway from Thursday through Monday with no less than ten gay events & parties, we couldn’t simply point our recommendations posting in the direction of “The Big Ticket” package, as there is much more on offer down Vauxhall way this weekend.
So getting straight to it, this coming big weekend looks ever bigger than at first meets the eye as tonight (Thursday 5th April) marks the beginning of a five day clubbing marathon as Gravity kicks off this Easter weekend its “Bad Thursday” event, a cute play on words by the promotions team as the vent actually stretches deep into Good Friday, stretching also a byword of this bash, as Gravity will be stretching its offer from one to two rooms, indeed switching in a Easter extension from Fire to the hi-tec Lightbox & plush Protocol club spaces, the team pleased as punch to be upgrading Gravity for this one off “Bad Thursday” foray. And with two distinct arenas of sound, they are pushing the boat further out, drawing in a truck load of terrific D.J. talent, the Protocol room going deep & sexy tech house in the hands of Guy Williams, Ariel & verity Mayes, while the more uplifting atmosphere of The Lightbox will be matched by the music, courtesy of Severino Fat Tony & Jonny M. But the promotions team will also be marking Easter with their “…Great Gravity Easter Egg Hunt…” encouraging you to forage for & find an egg to win free tickets for Beyond “Midnight”, that promotions team including new boy Danny Boyce who will be ability assisted by Elektra Paris & JJ Clark, while we are promised successive super sexy gogo shows throughout the night (or is that morning. With doors opening earlier than usual at midnight tonight (Thurs 5th) and the club running through to a planned 10 a.m. finish, admission is just £8 in advance at http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2012-04/05/gravity-presents-bad-thursday, while discounted £5 flyer entry is up for grabs for the first hour, while entry will be available on the door, but expect to pay more.
Onto Friday and Onyx, still riding high following its resplendent return to its home turf Area last week, sets its own brilliant benchmark even higher this (Fri 6th April), especially given the reputation of parties in the previous two Easter’s gone by, when the themes of “Resurrection” & “Crucified”, promoter Verity Mayes in record for saying that “…This year we take things up another level, showcasing the ‘Holy Trinity’ of Areas trio of rooms…” “Holy Trinity” the theme of this 2012 chapter in Onyx’s Easter extravaganza’s and that benchmark being met head on with headlining D.J. duo The Hoxton Whores, who will be taking hold of Area’s main room, no doubt playing out a host of their hits which include the mighty “Fusion”, as well as the equally appealing “Devil Toy”, while it is their latest club smash, a remix of “Right Before My Eyes” that will be getting an exclusive airing for the first time at a gay event (check out their podcast pressed exclusive for Orange Nation at http://orangenation.podomatic.com/entry/2012-04-04T06_27_24-07_00, while new Onyx main room resident Terry Bryan will be ably supporting & slotting in & around The Hoxton Whores extended 4 hour set. But with the other two rooms proving just as popular in their own right, the chapel space very much about uplifting commercial pop & house in the hands of Lady Lloyd & James St James, the new style pop up club nature of the terrace space is spearheaded by Kartel Brown, alongside the likes of Maximus Crown & NiYi, all very much evoking the club kid style that Onyx seems to be leaning towards. But with Sandro providing much of the main room eye candy along with his gorge gogo’s the new lighting installations that are giving Onyx its own unique feel, are boosted by the dream team of hosts headed up by the larger than life Chrissy Darling & her bevy of boys that include Mark-Ashley Dupe, Dalton, Jake Cook and Martin Rab, this is one Good Friday frolic you won’t want to miss, doors opening at 11 p.m. and the club running through to a planned 5 a.m. finish, entry for “The Big Ticket” holders free before 12.30 a.m., while for others, general admission is £8 (£6 with flyer/ad), while advance tickets online is a good option as you can grab an Onyx/A:M combo for just £12 at http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2012-04/06/onyx-extreme, while it’s also worth paying a visit to http://gayguestlists.com/onyx for discounted entry.
And with that mention of A:M, it neatly moves us onto the clubs “Easter Headliners” event which storms your Saturday morning in a massive way, not least that promoter Steven Sharp has pulled in a real heavy weight to match the magnitude of this Easter weekend meet, Paul Harris heading a thrilling line up that also includes Fat Tony, Jamie Head & David Jimenez in the main room, while Paulo Moreno is the man to master A;M’s lounge this week. As for the event’s headliner Paul Harris, well Steven is best placed to push his talents when he tells us, “…he has been making music & Dj’ing for nearly 15 years. As one third of the group Dirty Vegas; he enjoyed huge success in the USA following the use of the band’s single “Days Go By” in a Mitsobishi Eclipse stateside TV ad campaign which catapulted the band to the top of the US Dance Chart, national top 10 and boosted the tracks profile so much that it won the coveted Grammy Award in 2003 for Best Dance Recording! All this exciting news raised Paul’s Dj profile which soared as he toured the World and continued to produce music and remix tracks under his own name & as Dirty Vegas. International artists including Calvin Harris, Dizzee Rascal Justin Timberlake and Madonna all received the remix treatment!…” we not needing to add much more, apart from DON’T MISS HIS SET!!!., as we certainly won’t, having already booked our place at this prolific party. Mind you, with Jamie Head on absolute fire at the moment, we cannot wait for his set either, while Paulo Moreno having freed himself from the shackles of playing partner Alan K, should prove an interesting lounge listen in. As for the vent itself, well it’s an afterhours party, meaning doors open in the early morning hours, this weekend at 3 a.m. and running through to a Saturday morning normality breaking 11 a.m., entry available on the door, ably controlled by Hrh Minty, at a standard £12 (£8 with flyer/ad), while, once again, “The Big Ticket” holders can take advantage of free entry up to 5 a.m., Onyx goers advised to look out for the special discount stamp, more info should you need it, out at http://facebook.com/AMafterhours, while with heavenly host Danny Boyce looking after your every whim & whisper, the last word on this event goes to Steven who say’s, “…it’s set to be an Easter weekend to remember, so join me and the team for the essential Saturday Morning meet, sending peace, daffodils and chocolate bunnies to you all…” we love it!!
So where are we up to?, oh yes, Later, which in true bank holiday style has not one, but two bites of the Easter chocolate bunny (sorry Steven, had to use it) clubbing cherry, the main event taking place on Easter Sunday (8th April) & billed as the “WE Warm Up”, this daytime disco nestling like a proud mother hen, between Beyond & WE “Fluro”. However, the team do acknowledge the fact that some of you may want to take a breather between these two mighty meets, so there are no big plans to extend the usual Later offer, the Mirrorarch room at Fire the dance arena, while the infamous Later garden is the chill out space, having been spruced up for Spring with new furniture, the b.b.q. sure to be on full blast. But the big blasts will be coming courtesy of the delights of D.J.’s that include The Oli, Jamie Head, Per Q.X. & Femi B, while CO2 cannon blasts will play their part in proceedings, the amazing atmosphere enhanced by new Later visuals, decor, production & projections making this one of the most talked about weekly meets on the clubbing calendar, so should prove a popular place this coming Sunday. So, with doors opening at 11.30 a.m. at Fire and the club running through to a planned 7 a.m. finish, why not (like us) just keep the party going from Beyond to WE in the hands of Later & a Jamie Head set we have been promised will be a corker, entry priced at a mere £10, either on the door or in advance by going online to http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2012-04/08/later-bank-holiday-special, while its just £8 before 1 p.m. with an ad or flyer, discount stamps available at Beyond beforehand. And come Monday afternoon (9th April), the team will be daytime disco doing it all again, the same times, the same place and (we think) the same superb sounds, all at the same price too, in the words of the promotions team regarding this Later “Extra” event, “…well aren’t you lucky, a double helping of Later goodness this Easter Bank Holiday…” more details on both available at http://facebook.com/LATER.INFO.
So to the final piece in the prolific package & clubbing jigsaw Orange group style and it could only go to Beyond which is sure to at least match or even beat the rest of the offer of two exceptional events this weekend, as while Beyond “Midnight” is the biggie, the other piece of bread in the Beyond sandwich is “Recharged”, the second Easter coming of our most favourite & awesome afterhours, Area on Monday morning (9th April) from 6 a.m. being the time & the place, although given previous parties, we reckon this may be a slightly more sedate affair than the main “Midnight” event of the weekend (that massive meat filling in the Beyond Easter sandwich), we suspect the main room & the chapel space open, although having spoken with promoter Steven Sharp just this morning, he has confirmed that it is planned as a three room party, the the teams expectations being that As One party goers sinmply won’t want to stop & with beyond at their disposal, will take full advantage of bank holiday Monday morning. Plus we have received confirmation that The Oli & Guy Williams will be heading up the “Recharged” main room, while over in the Beyond RAW room, it’s Hifi Sean & David Jimenez, with , George Sharp & Jamie Head flying the Da Disco (that’s terrace room) flag However, with further news due & Beyond “Recharged” already looking like our Monday pick of the day, our new & latest website section “Picks” will be the place to go during the course of the weekend, as we post final details of this “Recharged” Beyond bash which plans to run until midday, advance standard £10 tickets applying, which you can purchase online at http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2012-04/09/beyond-recharged or at the usual Soho outlets, while entry on the door will be available although priced at £15.
So that’s the full Orange Easter Others picture complete and what a prolific picture it is, a full on five day frolic encompassing no less than nine parties, from Gravity to Later & the likes of Onyx, A:M, Beyond WE & As One, so not just the “Big Easter Weekend” but the biggest in our books. (DISCO MATT)
It literally took the scene by storm when it launched in London sixteen months ago, a summer season in Ibiza propelling its profile even further, while its presence at WE events as well as playing pre-party hosts for the likes of Beyond, Casa Latina & Matinee have seemingly secured its future. But with the seventeenth month itch approaching along with the need to cope with the capital’s clubbing crowd complacency, what does Jodie & her tight knit team have in store for this superb Soho scene soiree?
There can be no doubt in our minds that when we cast our eyes across the clubbing scene schedule in any given week these days, there are a handful of clubs & events that not only crop up with resounding regularity, but also stand out from others as exemplary examples of popular parties that hardly ever fail to attract & maintain a healthy following, the likes of Beyond, Later & Orange three shining examples of weekly brands that have stood the test of time. However, maintaining an enthusiasm & interest in events takes a fair amount of hard work, the days when you could simply open the doors & see crowds flock in, very much long gone, whether it be at the weekend or otherwise. However, when a club catches the imagination to the extent that it very much bucks that trend, the people involved could be forgiven for taking things a little too much for granted, although even the less experienced promoters have to realise that by simply sitting on their laurels is tantamount to disaster, particularly when operating in a scene that is renowned for turning against the trend tide with lightning speed.
Room Service is one such clubbing brand that literally took the scene by storm and since its launch in October 2010 has seemingly continued to ride a wave crest that shows no signs of coming into shore, an extension of its eventing here in the capital seeing promoter Jodie Harsh & her terrific team expand into a summer season in Ibiza, undoubtedly propelling the profile of the club in the eyes of Europeans if not just Spaniards. But back home, while we have only made the occasional visits since the launch, every time we have pitched up after 11 p.m., the queue has extended down Greek St, a reflection of just how popular the club is, and this is on a Thursday (i.e. school) night if you please. However, Jodie’s jamboree has not been without its competition, Gigolo seemingly locking horns when it launched in May last year, although what it rather seemed to do was to bring more people into Soho on a Thursday night, although while David & L.a. may have since switched both venue & night, Lo-Profile has “Society”, meaning Room Service still needs to keep on its toes and remain “Ship Shape & Bristol Fashion” in its quest to remain at the top of its game, a game that has seen it voted as the best UK club night in 2011 by Attitude magazine & is sure to feature in the upcoming Boyz award results too.
So what does this boutique clubbing brilliance have in store in the forthcoming weeks & months? Well, first & foremost, Jodie has consolidated her towering team of resident D.J.’s these being scene stars & favourites Steve Pitron, Severino, Kris Di Angelis, Fat Tony & Ariel, while special guests in recent weeks have included the mighty music maestro, Smokin Jo, east end boy Matt Bogard & Brighton belle Verity Mayes. And hosting pre-parties remains a staple ingredient in the Room Service schedule, the club welcoming Matinee with open arms three weeks ago, Trade last Thursday and tonight (Thurs 16th), it’s all about “A Space Odyssey” as the Casa Latina crew roll into Soho town. But while all these represent amazing attractions, we have to dig a little deeper into the Room Service treasure chest of treats to discover some hidden gems that often get overlooked when considering whether to mosey on down to Maibella, this compact & bijou yet enticingly beautifully formed little venue on Greek St. And those treats pretty much start at the door, the charming J.J. Clark making every single welcome something special, while for those that arrive before 11 p.m. (the club opens at 10) there is a complimentary glass of champers to greet you, this as well as the special “serviced” cocktails priced at an extremely reasonable £4 each available all night, or for those at the other end of the scale, a bottle of Grey Goose, marketed as “…the world’s best tasting vodka…”, with all the accompaniments & special treatments the Maibella team offer you for £150.
Then we look outside of Room Service’s Soho doors and the untrained eye & ear will hardly realise that Jodie has teamed up with Circa Bar on Frith St, just a block away, this equally compact & bijou beauty matching the sumptuousness of Maibella, also attracting an equally qualitative crowd and sporting a bunch of resident D.J.’s that have past & present links with Room Service, Munroe Bergdorf & James Pople two that appear relatively regularly on Thursday’s. And as part of the tie between the two, that is Room Service & Circa, for those of you that can’t make it down to Greek St until after the witching hour, it is well worth swinging by Circa first, as there are “late night check-in passes” for your favourite boutique brilliance priced at a competition busting £5, valid for entry between 1 & 2 a.m. However, it doesn’t stop at Soho, as Room Service continue their partnership with WE, once again taking over the second space at the forthcoming “Pharaoh” event on Saturday 3rd March at The Cornet in E&C, while the summer season ahead looks like seeing Room Service go on tour, as well as rekindle the “Downtown” brand and, with little birdie tweeting that Room Service could be hosting a room at the next As One event, sitting on laurels does not form part of the Jodie’s & her teams equation.
So, if you haven’t yet checked in at Maibella on a Thursday and in so doing, indulging in the full Room Service sensation, that being “…your weekly fix of the best of London’s gay scene wrapped up in a boutique package, with the hottest go-go boys steaming things up, a crazy army of hosts leading you into a haze of neon lit mischief and the best underground house music in the city…” then its high time you did. And in the words of Room Service’s sponsors, this is one fabulous feast for the eyes & ears, meaning it’s time to stimulate your senses and “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)
Painting a reflective picture comes quite easily to us, although in the case of this super size review of Beyond’s “10th Birthday”, to do so has required us to prologue our reflection by saying that this “Amazing Afterhours Anniversary” devotion is no ordinary review. Why?, well because like no other club we have been connected with, Beyond holds unparelled importance, emotion & affection, so much so that we felt, as it has reached a magnificent milestone in its history, we should mark the occasion in a special way. So this review will not only capture the 10th birthday event itself, but also paint that picture of our emotional & affectionate connection with it, taking a journey through its history, sharing some special musical moments via YouTube links, and in so doing, making this a truly celebratory reflection rather than a simple event review. But while we cannot escape showing some the overwhelming emotion we felt on Sunday, much of it displayed through our nibble size review tweets at the time, we will be taking care to temper that emotion & balance it with the heavenly highlights that made this a brilliant Beyond birthday bash.
We can count ourselves extremely fortunate to have witnessed & savoured some of the biggest & best brands, many having stood the test of time and are treading the clubbing boards today in some sort of form or other, names that spring to mind including Orange, Trade, Salvation & DTPM, all having been around for well over a decade. However, despite these outstanding achievers having passed the landmark ten years, it would be fair to say that, with the possible exception of Trade, not one of these brilliant brands could have been considered as towering the top of the game for the whole of that time, such is the level of competition within the capitals clubbing circuit, not to mention the fickle nature of the crowds who often move from brand to brand at the drop of a hat, just look at switch from SuperMartXe to WE as a perfect example. Moreover, a whole host of other big brands in our lifetime haven’t quite reached that decade yardstick, Action, Crash, & Juicy all hitting the high notes but falling short of that double figure feat, thus putting such an achievement into perspective and meaning that when such an occurrence presents itself, there is definitely reason to celebrate, whether it be the club or the clubber, this past Sunday being no exception as one awesome afterhours achiever was set to mark their tenth anniversary.
Beyond created a pretty instantaneous impact from the day it was launched back in 2001, at the time tackling the tough cookie that was Trade, the then mother of all afterhours clubbing that had made hitting the dancefloor on a Sunday morning change from being just decadent to vogue, a time in the weekly calendar when many would either be sleeping or pursuing religious activities, the thought of clubbing the last thing on their minds. However, what Trade proved, was that the desire to dance & be debaucherous on the final morning of the week, although its music had a certain direction and due to its location, trekking across from the burgeoning clubbing hotspot that was Vauxhall became less & less appealing, especially when a new boy on the block showed its hand, literally on the doorstep of Saturday sensations Crash & Action. So, with the writing on the Trade wall, Beyond was the new darling of dancers and, despite having dipped off the clubbing calendar for two years, has, like no other club we know, remained at the very top of its & the capitals clubbing circuit game for the whole of its existence, making a 10th birthday bash a truly enticing & exciting prospect.
Having trodden those tender first few steps with the brand back in 2001, hardly a week would go by in those early years of Beyond’s existence at club Colosseum that you wouldn’t find us in the thick of the action, the likes of Brent Nicholls & Paul Heron entertaining us with laidback beats in the VIP room, while the main room sported stars that including David Jiminez, Alan X & Steve Pitron, all these names having made their mark at the colossus that was Crash. And during the halcyon Colosseum days, we grew increasingly fonder of our frolics in the hands of Beyond, not one New Years day ever quite the same without celebrating in the hands of this brilliant brand & its boy beatmasters, the music more mainstream than its old adversary Trade, perhaps accounting for its broader & lasting appeal. And even finding ourselves well out of its reach with work deployments into Essex & Kent, Beyond continued to feature in our frolics until 2006 when it dropped off the clubbing calendar, our Sunday’s temporarily replaced by new offer Ultra & venue Area, although life was never quite the same as those brilliant days, the loss of our now adorable afterhours akin to losing a close companion.
So when, like a phoenix rising from the ashes, Beyond returned and took up residence at Ultra’s home Area in May 2008, a new dawn in the club’s history quickly followed, initial comparisons with Colosseum dissolving as the identity Area was giving Beyond was something quite spectacular, not least in the amazing atmosphere, lighting & effects that were to become the clubs trademarks. Plus, added into the mix was the continuity provided by some of its resident D.J.’s that survived the gap in the clubs services, the likes of The Sharp Boys, Gonzalo Rivas & David Jiminez, key players in the new set up, while the clubs longest surviving resident who like us, had trodden those tender first steps in 2001, right back in the thick of it all at Area, Steve Pitron the shining star that was pulling in the punters and playing, for us, the most magnificent music. And as we had craved our clubbing at Colosseum, we soon adored Area, Beyond the single most powerful link between the two that was by now riding on a wonderful wave crest that showed no signs of coming into shore.
With the club & the brand very much back where it belonged, at the top of its game and without doubt the most popular of all on the capitals clubbing circuit, Beyond entered a new phase of excellence, both at home & abroad, strides internationally seeing it play out to audiences in Paris, Amsterdam, Mykonos & Brazil, while back in London it was scooping award after award and cementing its reputation of being the jewel in the weekly clubbing crown. And our affectionate associations continued to grow for Beyond, the now infamous “spot” that had become a byword for Disco Matt’s dervishes, instantly recognised by so many of its regulars, D.J. residents & successive promoters, while our own purple patch period with the club reached its heights just this year when the equally infamous “rollercoaster emotional rides & joyful tears” became our secondary Beyond trademark. So, it was no surprise that, as the 10th Birthday loomed, our emotional excitement rose to boiling point, our expectations began to push the boundaries of reality and with many of its key players in place, on paper at least, we made vocal & emotional preparations to celebrate Beyond’s past, present & future, the scene now set for what was to prove an amazing afterhours anniversary.
Having sought to slide home to re-charge our batteries after a walk on the Casa Latina side, those now racing emotions of excitement & anticipation were very much gripping us, not least as we set the mood by listening to a handful of classic Beyond beats stretching back as far as 2004, all in preparation for the short journey return to Vauxhall, we finding ourselves arrive at Area’s doors at not long turned 6 a.m. And with the familiar face of Tom Fuller in his usual military style efficiently managing the considerable queue, it was clear many had decided Beyond was the only path to choose, the sweet smell of celebration hanging heavenly in the air. With door hostess Juliana’s welcome setting us on our way, it was into Area and first through the terrace room, where veteran of Beyond’s Colosseum days, Severino, was setting about charming the crowd with a ton of terrific tunes, a further advance into the chapel space spotting another Beyond heavyweight resident from past & present, Gonzalo Rivas, he too attracting an ample audience with a bundle of brilliant beats. But with our mind set on sorting a space for our belongings, then preparing for the main room magnificence ahead, we grabbed some refreshments & headed for the fresh air of the outside space, both to check our emotions and gather ourselves for the prolific partying to come.
With a flock of familiar faces coming up to say hi, it was clear that this Beyond birthday had attracted many of its most adoring fans, not to mention the whole of the Orange Group top brass, Craig Elder & all three sons plus Jonny Marsh & Verity Meyes present & correct, while scene faces aplenty were all around, we grabbing a few pre-dancing moments with the adorable Andrea, who like many, were waiting for the main room to swing into action. And with the jungle drums signalling its start, we headed inside and straight for our spot, arriving to find the space already rammed with revellers, The Sharp Boys in charge of the tunes and treating us to a terrific trip down musical memory lane, one classic Beyond tune after the next transporting us back to the delectable days of Colosseum, our eyes already ravaged with emotional tears as we span on our spot. But the Area memories were also having their say, not least when the release of the prolific & resplendent pyrotechnic rockets grabbed our attention, they racing across the rooms ceiling, their spectacular sparks adding to the already luminous lighting & amazing atmosphere, a collection of the Brazilian bunch that usually accompany us around our spot soaking up the splendour, both D.J. DouGuim & pal Giuseppe among them, our playful mate tempering our emotions with energetic insistence.
By now The Sharp Boys were in full flow, mind you so were our tears, the anticipation of the set we had been waiting for getting too much to handle, lending the need for a further fresh air break from the birthday bravado, a step outside spotting the arrival of Mikey D who, like The Sharp Boys, had put in a tremendous amount of preparation for a celebratory set full of musical memories of Beyond’s bygone years. So, fighting back yet more waves of emotion, we headed back to our spot, just in time to soak up a true classic, The Sharp Boys adding their own terrific twist to Chamonix’s “How Did You Know”, sending superb shivers up our spine, not least as this was one of ten tunes we had picked out as our own musical memories of the clubs history. With Steven having popped out to say hello & George waving over the D.J. booth, it was now the turn of Mikey D to step up to the Beyond birthday plate, admittedly without his back-to-back playing partner, many remarking on the absence of the clubs undisputed superstar, Steve Pitron, although what we & Mikey were missing in this masterful man, Mr Dower was to compensate for his companion’s absence with an simply scintillating set, soaring the amazing Area atmosphere to new heights.
Pulling ourselves together was now the order of the day, as Mikey set about stunning us with selection after selection, tracks “Delirious”, “Addicted” & “Sunday’s At Heaven” among a mound of other musical memory moments that were doing the job of deflecting the devastation we were feeling over the absence of our bon ami, Giuseppe on hand to soak up our tears and sending us into a spin with his bawdy bravado. And with the podiums topped with Elektra Paris’s drop dead gorgeous gogo’s, Mikey on fabulous form, the lighting & effects at full tilt, it was now that we found our significant stride, more & more familiar faces passing by to say hello, Lee Harris, Mauricio Ortiz & Naomi Ruiz among them, while Aaron Elder & Jonny Marsh were never far away, they like us marvelling in the magnificent music & prolific performance of Mikey D. With a terrific trail of treats being turned out by the tore de force that was Mr Dower, we found it hard to prize ourselves away from our spot, even with the tinsy temptations of a back-to-back set by D’Johnny & David Jiminez in the chapel space & The Oli in the terrace, such was the main room majesty before our eyes. But our moment of the morning was about to come, as the usual glances over the D.J. booth that would have come from our missing man, came our way from Mikey, the look & then the thumbs up sign sending the reassuring signal we had been looking for, lifting our spirits further within the rollercoaster ride we were journeying through this breathtaking Beyond birthday bash.
Now we were entering the final phase of our trip down memory lane, the arrival of Alan K & Jamie Hammond, the duo that would assume control of Beyond’s main room, signalling an end to Mike D’s magnanimous music, their assumption of the decks also marking a new phase in this amazing afterhours anniversary, a hint more to the Beyond present & future rather than its past which had been celebrated by the threesome before. And in this recently formed partnership, Alan & Jamie were to prove a formidable force in carrying the crowd along with their stupendous selections, we too suitably stolen by their dovetail devotions, although it would be Tom Fuller that would wrestle us away from the main room madness and complete the predictable pattern of our regular visit to this brilliant clubbing brand. So, assuming our position at the end of the terrace bar gave us the added bonus of soaking up a towering turn by the legendary Fat Tony who was attracting plenty of dancing admirers, not least when what surely can be described as THE anthem of the club, “Release Me”, was played out, that on top of recent hit “Enjoy The Ride”, both very much sealing our deal on this birthday bash, our minds now set on retiring home for rest, relaxation & reflection on what had been another morning packing with memory making moments.
So what did we think of this Beyond birthday celebration?, what were our heavenly highlights of this magnificent meet?, and what now for this brilliant top of the pile brand? Well, cutting through the emotions, the tears & tribulations of our day, we can say with hand on heart that this was an outstanding outing that will rank among some of the great Beyond’s of all-time and while it will probably never quite tip the scales that “Tokyo” & “Erotica” did, it will stand among a long list of others that will remain in our memory banks for many years to come. Hats definitely have to go off to The Sharp Boys who, without question, celebrated the glory of the Colosseum days through a spectacular selection of sounds that was pure unadulterated pleasure from start to finish, while each & every other D.J. across all of the three rooms played their prolific part in making this a birthday celebration colossus, mentions for Gonzalo Rivas, David Jiminez, D’Johnny, Severino, The Oli & Fat Tony indelible inclusions, while celebratory congratulations also have to go to the army of organisers who made this hallmark happening possible, not least to Mr Craig Elder.
However, for us, the huge highlight was that Mikey D set, a truly outstanding couple of hours in our morning marked with one towering tune after the next that we know will have made his playing partner proud, our huge highlight being that reassuring look he gave us over the booth in our moment of need. As for Beyond’s future, well it seems to be pretty secure, especially given the terrific turnout for this milestone mark in its history, the likes of new kid on the Beyond block Jamie Hammond sure to feature, while we know that the missing link from the morning, Steve Pitron, will be back and keen to make up for celebratory moments lost. Then there are its continual aspirations on the international clubbing playing field, the brand sure to make an impact on the further reaches of the globe, we sense a presence in Australia & South Africa on the cards, this on top of consolidation of its partying in Paris, its outings to Amsterdam & its sorties to Sao Paulo, while the Beyond trophy cabinet back home will need to make room for more awards to come as it steps into its eleventh year of cutting edge clubbing & colossal curtain raising cavorting. And despite what one particular tweet may have said, Beyond remains and will forever remain our most favourite club, meaning we will be right by its side as it continues to reign supreme, forging a path of clubbing fulfilment for us and many more besides. (DISCO MATT)
Now for those promised YouTube musical links and a self indulgent conclusion to this celebratory look at Beyond’s “10th Birthday”, as we thought it appropriate to pick our ten top tunes from the clubs history, well those covering the span of years & holding the most magical memories of their time.
So to our first choice and a track from Beyond’s first ever year, 2001, “Easy Livin” by Sea Flowers perhaps not that reflective of the clubs music of the time, but one which holds special memories for us as it was played by Brent Nicholls in the VIP room at club Colosseum, the club’s first home. A disco tipped track that will forever be about Brent & Beyond, catch a clip at http://youtube.com/watch?v=Y-uN5hRMyVs.
Onto our second choice and one from the clubs 2nd year, this 2002 track by Una Mass a real favourite of ours as “I Will Follow” would often finish off an Alan X set around 12 midday at Colosseum, sending us spinning into a fabulous frenzy, Alan one of a handful of residents that played at both Crash & Beyond in the early days of our favourite afterhours. A timeless track that still sounds as superb now as it did then, savour a slice at http://youtube.com/watch?v=4j-q6su5orc.
To our third choice and one that actually featured on Sunday morning, The Sharp Boys adding their own terrific twist to Chamonix’s “How Did You Know (77 Strings), which, when it was first released in 2003, stormed both the sets & the dancefloors of Beyond, many of its all star residents of the time playing it to rapturous reception, not least by Steve Pitron in Colosseum’s main room. This is a real memory maker, which you can grab in all its glory at http://youtube.com/watch?v=pYiFmDuCvko.
For our fourth choice we skip a year and look to 2005 for the first of two tremendous memory making tracks, both from a mixing/re-mixing duo that were very much hitting the high notes of the clubbing circuit at the time, Haji & Emmanuel. Dajie’s “Brighter Days” holds particularly special memories for us, not least as we can visualise our appearance at Beyond on NYD, our right arm in plaster & Steve Pitron playing the track, while Hugh Stevenson was also noted of turning it out on many an occasion. An all time Beyond classic in our books, the memory making mix out at http://youtube.com/watch?v=2_lPtUMN-xc
We stick with 2005 and with Haji & Emmanuel for our fifth choice of ten, “Take Me Away” firmly in the Steve Pitron camp of classics that he would play often at Colosseum, the lyrics, the beats & the amazing atmospherics of the track shouting Beyond, “…come with me to the dancefloor…I want to dance the night away…”, or in this case the morning, which we did over & over again to this towering tune. A choice that will forever be an anthem of our favourite afterhours & its biggest D.J. all-star and one you can savour in all its splendour at http://youtube.com/watch?v=AtRht_BInS4.
Onto choice number six and one that sees us jump to 2008, marking a new era in Beyond’s history as it now finds itself in new Vauxhall venue, Area, having halted its happenings at Coliseum, disappearing off the clubbing circuit two years before. Now, while this track will never be forever our favourite afterhours, “Sunday’s At Heaven” was one of the year’s biggest hits & in terms of memories has us gazing at our pint sized French pal as he gyrated on the podium in front of the Beyond main room D.J. booth. One from the vaults & a worth a spin or two at http://youtube.com/watch?v=SFrAXbqt38w.
Number seven in our ten, taken from 2009, is trademark Beyond & Steve Pitron, a track that continues to make an inclusion in his sets to this day, we suspect more to get that emotional reaction that has become our own trademark of our rollercoaster ride journeys that came to a fore this year. “Last Forever” by Norman Doray still sends superb shivers up our spines and when we close our eyes we are on our spot in Area & at Beyond, that is how powerful it is packed with memories of our favourite club. “…Let’s make this moment last forever…” which it certainly does when we go to http://youtube.com/watch?v=zoG6OBJ1euQ.
To our eighth track choice and one that simply had to be included as it has beyond written all over it, although it was Industri & courtesy of Paul Heron when we first heard “Release Me”, Paul having discovered the track from a trip down under. However, we adopted it as our anthem and many of Beyond’s D.J.’s reacted, playing it out just to see us spinning uncontrollably on our spot, not least Alan K & Steve Pitron. A pick from 2009/2010 and out at http://youtube.com/watch?v=5MhbKqoBbgA, this towering track still erupts the Beyond dance floors & ranks as one all-time great dance hits of our times at the club.
For the penultimate choice in our top ten, we look to 2011, a year that marked a real purple patch period in our association with Beyond & its music and while a long list of tracks were in the running as number nine, due to the overriding significance of “Waiting For You” by The Shapeshifters, it simple had to be included, not least as it holds masses of memories of our Sunday morning appearances & those looks over Beyond’s main room D.J. booth by Steve Pitron, starting off those joyous tearful emotional eruptions. “…If you need me, just call me…”, say no more, just catch a clip at http://youtube.com/watch?v=nnB3t51qRBM.
So we reach number ten in our choices and while there are some real anthems in our picks, we kind of pail in comparison to this track which will always be about Beyond & Steve Pitron for us. The truly tremendous “Here Comes The Rain” which was first released by The Eurythmics years before, got the remix treatment in 2008 but still features in Steve’s sets today, the ticker tape explosions, the bubble waves & those pyrotechnic rockets the backdrop to its brilliant crescendo beats. This is Beyond at its brilliant best & its all star resident at his most resplendent, a worthy inclusion worth catching at http://youtube.com/watch?v=ACcTKAv1Sak.
Having taken our tender steps onto the capital’s clubbing circuit some twenty or so years ago, we can count ourselves pretty lucky to have encountered some truly tremendous times in the hands of some of the biggest & best brands along the way, from Action to DTPM, Factor 25 to FIST, Matinee to SuperMartXe & Lovechild to Later, all making their significant mark in our memories. And whilst the list could go on & on, these are our handful of happenings that have reached the elite in our echelons and rank as those that have influenced our clubbing lives more than many others, but if we were to pin down the brands that have made the biggest impression on us, it comes down to just three, the first being Trade, no list ever being complete without the mother of all clubs which completely dominated the scene in the 90’s and still continues to this day, although admittedly a minnow of its former spectacular self. Then there is Crash, a club that heralded the underground movement & put Vauxhall onto the London clubbing map and a club that, without doubt, had as much, if not more of an influence on our lives than Trade, as it was at Crash that we formed some of our greatest & longest lasting friendships, many that survive & thrive to this very day.
But what the colossus that was Crash did more than anything else is create a Sunday morning afterhours phenomenon that has excelled all others before it, rising to the top of our clubbing pile and in so doing, beating off all potential rivals for our fondest affection. And it couldn’t be any other club than Beyond, a club and brand that started as a simple follow on for Crash customers, but has become a worldwide symbol for everything that is ecstatic & exemplary of club eventing, a brand that has dominated the capitals clubbing circuit for a huge slice of its existence, toppling Trade from its proud pedestal to become THE place to be & be seen clubbing on a Sunday morning. So, as Beyond prepares to mark ten years since making its first impression on the London clubbing landscape, we couldn’t let the moment pass without taking you back through some of its historical highlights, sharing some of the magical music & the prolific people that the club have served up to the scene and then delving into the detail of how the current team at the clubs helm plan to mark this landmark in its lifetime.
So where & when did the brilliance that is Beyond today begin?, well we have to look back to 2nd June 2001 when the concept for an Sunday morning afterhours was born out of what was initially an after party for the Purple In the Park, host venue, The Coliseum proving to be the clubs home for the first part of its heavenly history, although its first faltering year in operation saw Beyond play second fiddle to the Saturday superstars on the scene, Crash, Action & Heaven still proving the hard hitters, while Trade’s pedestal was proving a tough cookie to topple. But enter stage left the man behind other Vauxhall afterhours brands A: M & Orange, one Craig Elder and Beyond was to take on a whole new identity and impact, the joining of forces with Crash’s Wayne Shires proving a explosive collaborative cocktail and one that would see the brand propelled into the eyes of the clubbing community virtually instantaneously, becoming the talk of town & very much walking the walk, seeing off the Sunday morning competition that was Trade.
With Beyond under a full head of steam, the Colosseum days were to prove very special for us, not least that many of the resident D.J.’s from Crash would play out at this awesome afterhours too, the likes of Alan X, David Jiminez, Severino & Steve Pitron performing virtually week in week out, well when Beyond was given away to Crash’s own “Afterhours” party, while the iconic VIP room was where one of the best known & longest running D.J. back-to-back partnerships were formed, Brent Nicholls & Paul Heron playing line astern, this leading on to a playing partnership that saw soiree splendour Industri rule the Thursday waves for much of its own time in clubland. But with so many stars of the scene clamouring to play the Beyond decks and the now weekly parties very much roadblock affairs, what was originally a two room party was stretched to three a “Therapy” & then an “Elemental” themed space introducing the likes of Malcolm Duffy, Paul Martin & Red and Blue, while Beyond’s main room sported stars The Sharp Boys, Hugh Stevenson & Stevie B, mixing it up with the clubs originals, Mr Pitron still part & parcel of the clubs prolific package. And appropriately, Steve has just this month released a podcast from those halcyon days of Beyond, from April 2004 in fact, the magical musical memoires that he made back then coming flooding back before our eyes & ears and one that is an absolute must for all Beyond & Pitron fans as well as those who fancy a terrific trip down memory lane, one which you can grab by going to http://stevepitronsessions.podomatic.com/.
But while 2006 dawned with one of the clubs biggest parties to date, the early part of the year seeing the offer extend to a new concept called “B4 Beyond”, the might of Crash & Orange uniting in what was seen as the continuing & harmonious collaboration between the two camps. However, under the surface the lines were being drawn in the sand, as new club venue Area was in the cusp of being launched, the team behind Crash throwing their might & money behind this amazing arrival, one which was to see Beyond hit the back burner midway through the year. And with Beyond out of play, this new custom built venue stepped into the spotlight, its own afterhours outing “Ultra” becoming the darling of the Sunday morning clubbing market, attracting Crash stars that included Mikey D, Jamie Head, Brent Nicholls and, naturally, Steve Pitron among a host of others that had played Beyond in the Coliseum days and who play for the brand to this day, Paul Heron included in that elite list. But this part of the Beyond picture would never be complete without a massive mention for one other, as the hostess with the mostest, now known as Hrh Minty, but then simply as Minty, was the fabulous face of Beyond from its early days at Coliseum, very much providing continuity within the calamity that had seen our favourite afterhours disappear off our dance diary.
So, to pick up the Beyond story we need to fast forward some two years, to 2nd May 2008 to be exact, this marking the return of the brand to its regular slot in our schedule, an attempt to re-launch the club earlier in the year at the inauspicious Sunday evening timing falling on immediate rocky ground. But with Area now in the hands of Craig Elder & his Orange Group, Beyond was to see its most successful years ahead, not only cementing itself as the best afterhours outing on the clubbing circuit, but establishing itself as the leading brand in the eyes of the clubbing community & press, scooping award after award, not least the prestigious SeenQueen club poll, one of the most respected & robust opinion orators around. That said, the awards came on the back on the brilliance of the brand, not least with the dynamic D.J.’s that Beyond employed, Steve Pitron very much in the mix, while his old Crash pals Mikey D & Jamie Head became regular features too, the likes of Alan K, Hifi Sean, D’Johnny, Paul Christian & The Oli the new blood, joining the Colosseum company of David Jiminez, Gonzalo Rivas & The Sharp Boys. And many of these stars have laid down recordings in reverence of Beyond, Alan’s compilations considerable, Sean’s mixes magical, D’Johnny’s devotions delightful & Oli’s podcasts pumping, all worth checking out at http://djalank.podomatic.com, http://hifiseandj.podomatic.com/, http://djohnny.podomatic.com/ & http://theoli.podomatic.com/.
However, the story of Beyond is a continuing one, as in Area we have seen some of the best times in our own clubbing history, not one month going by without it playing a pulsating part in our prancing, so much so we find it hard to choose one or two from the wealth of wonderful weeks when the club hit our heavenly high notes, although “Tokyo” last October & “Erotica” this February rank as two huge highlights along with scores of others that received our rapturous reviewing, the brand benefitting from unparralled exposure through those reviews as well as countless recommends & reports posts, while we have sometimes courted controversy with revealing our displeasure to certain changes or directions the club has taken in recent times. That said, as amazing those halcyon days of Colosseum were, 2011 has been a purple patch Beyond year for us, our relationship with the club & many of its players reaching dizzy heights, our now much publicised “rollercoaster emotional rides & tearful floods of joy” never more apparent than when found on “our spot” in Area for Beyond, indeed that very phrase, our spot, a product of the club and one that is equally associated to us as we do it to Beyond. As for this brand, well 2011 has seen it stretch its international legs, touching the likes of Amsterdam, Ibiza, Mykonos, Paris, & Sao Paulo, while beaming out its beats on Gaydar Radio has reached audiences as far as Australia & South Africa, making Beyond as a brand a genuine global giant. Add to that it’s various incarnations, “Belief”, “Back 2″, “Midnight” & “Super Size” and if the club were a human being, it would most definitely be a man for all seasons.
Yet as the truly brilliant Beyond marks a decade since first opening its doors to droves of dancers, the club finds its very existence at threat, microscopic attention by the regulatory authorities in the last few weeks marring its magnificence, while rumours are rife of licensing & other issues that could affect its future or its home. That said, given the clubs standing on the scene together with its ability to survive & thrive where others have fallen by the wayside, come this Sunday morning (25th Sept), Beyond will be brimming with dance devotees both old & new, all coming together to celebrate what is truly one of the best clubs on the planet. And the team will be turning out the best that Beyond has to offer, with a never seen before bounty of back-to-back sets by its all-star residents, some also old while others are new, the marriage of multi mixing maestro Alan K with young gun Jamie Hammond looking electric, the playing partnerships between Hifi Sean & Severino, D’Johnny & David Jiminez set to be superb showstoppers, while the prolific pairing of Steve Pitron & Mikey D had to be a given and will surely prove stand-out among the ample helpings of this 10th birthday celebration cake topping icing impressions.
But with the devil in the detail, there is much more that this Beyond birthday bash looks like bring, not least as a further supporting cast of D.J. residents include Jamie Head, The Sharp Boys, Gonzalo Rivas, Fat Tony, The Oli & Jonny M, while we are told Elektra Paris will be heading up a team of ten dancers dressed distinctively to celebrate this landmark moment in the clubs history, the team telling us to expect “… everything from cutting edge LED gogos, to stunning couture sailors, amazonian warriors, erotic leather-bound studs, circus freaks and wonderland characters…” all on a custom built stage setting created exclusively for this event. Then add in the truly amazing Area lighting, effects, pyrotechnics & lasers, for which Beyond has become a byword and you have one colossal celebration of afterhours audacity at its brilliant best, all this hosted by the fantabulous Naomi Ruiz & Mauricio Ortiz, meaning that this is sure to be a roadblock event, thereby hinting that advance tickets are a must to avoid disappointment, these priced at a mere £10 and available online at http://clubtickets.com as well as at the usual Soho outlets. However, chancing it on the door will cost you £12 with an ad or flyer, while without will stretch you to a score (that’s £20 folks), those doors opening at 6 a.m. and the club running through to a planned 1 a.m.
Now that’s the detail, but how do we sum up this whirlwind look back at Beyond’s history & its landmark landing? Well, despite the pedantic part of us questioning its right to celebrate a 10th birthday, given that two year break in its history, it is in true fact a full (and slightly more) ten years since Beyond braved the capitals clubbing scene and during that time it has brought to us the best in music, the best in D.J.’s, the best in dancing, the best in atmosphere, the best in effects & the best in events. So, that simple word best speaks for Beyond in a nutshell and given its amazing ascendency, those halcyon days at Colosseum, the phoenix rise from the ashes at Area, the unrepentant wave crest ride it finds itself on today & everything in-between, we cannot take anything away from this colossus of a club’s moment of glory, so will hopefully be right in the thick of the action, nibble size tweeting, spinning on our spot, in a Pitron pool of tearful emotion, but moreover helping Beyond & all its prolific players celebrate this awesome afterhours anniversary. (DISCO MATT)
When it comes to music festivals there are some biggies of the annual calendar, Glastonbury very much setting the scene in June, while Radio One have their say right across the country throughout the summer, a firm favourite of Londoner’s being SW4, which for the last two years, we have found virtually on our doorstep, being a resident of Clapham. But while all these events tip the scales for many, there is one that seems to have gathered recent momentum & following since its launch back in 2004, Lovebox very much capturing the imagination and attracting some massive names in the music & entertainment industry in a three day festival that has grown into something quite special. And, whilst the Friday & Saturday are superb in their own rights, it is Sunday that has created a pretty gigantic gay following, this year seemingly bigger than ever, meaning we simply had to mark the occasion with our own look at this third of three days of prolific music making, entertainment extravaganza’s & outdoor offerings that will see the cream of the partying scene head for East London & a liaison with Lovebox.
So, what sets Sunday aside from the other two day? And what can you expect by way of star players & gay tainted treats? Well, first & foremost, Sunday has the terrific title of “Out & Fierce” the added tagline of “Not Shady Just Fierce” hinting towards the offer & not the weather, that latter looking to dominates people’s minds as the day approaches, as the famed British summer seems to be rearing its ugly head. However when you consider the fabulous line up right across this third day in Victoria Park, even torrential rain doesn’t look like deterring the faithful from flocking to see the likes of The Scissor Sisters, Robyn, Blondie, Kelis, Beth Ditto, & gay crowd favourite, Marc Almond perform on the Lovebox main stage, while a host of peripheral parties will also see a gay swarm of scene faces who will care not if they get a soaking, more wanting to soak up the shows. And with some of the best alternative brands on offer, there will be plenty of choice, Jodie Harsh’s “Circus” probably one of the best fits for this third day, co-promoter Kris Di Angelis having planned a prolific stage show performance, we suspect including a sea of extravert entertainers, headlined by a special appearance by Boy George along with Mel Blatt, while Jim Warboy, Erol Sabadosh, Filthy Dukes & Fred Falke will be charging up the Circus inspired tunes, so a stage not to miss.
However, the gay interest continues with Horse Meat Disco taking a significant slice of the action, Jim Stanton & James Hillard pulling in some of their big named D.J.’s to delight, including Severino & Luke Howard (aka filthy Luka – say no more), while they will be continuing the partying afterwards too, celebrating the conclusion of what is surely to be a fourth year of superb showings at Lovebox, with an afterparty back in Vauxhall, welcoming dynamic duo, Opitmo, to the Disco decks, the duo of JD Twitch and JG Wilkes being quoted as “…renowned and highly respected for their memorable and ecstatic sets. “…exhibiting a unique disregard for genres and musical restrictions in their craft, creating a nightclub experience that strikes out into territories far beyond the accepted boundaries of club music..” so should be a showing to see. But back to Lovebox itself and amazing alternative, Trailer Trash, will also be making an appearance, along with other East end alternative gay/metrosexual meets, Hot Boy Dancing & Disco Bloodbath, the latter taking up a spot in the VIP arena along with Dirtbox, the likes of Tom Stephan, Dan Beaumont, Hannah Holland, Mikki Most, Jonny Woo, Tensnake, & The Lovely Jonjo, flying the gay flag, while a special set D.J. from none other than Peaches, will surely be a main stage draw.
So with the tremendously tempting prospect of catching all those terrific talents in action, added to which there will be scores of stages, cabaret & entertainment arena’s, circus spots and vintage bazaar banks, together with street theatre & art installation attractions , there is much on offer at this latest Lovebox festival. So, what if you haven’t yet booked and want to head out to Victoria Park tomorrow (Sun 17th July), well, while its pretty much last minute in terms of grabbing a ticket, having just glanced at the official Lovebox website (http://lovebox.net/), there are still advanced purchases available, although, having booked, you will need to take your confirmation & relevant ID along with you, in order to pick up the tickets on the gate, while entrance on the day will be strictly limited, so we recommend booking in advance. As for further details, http://lovebox.net is the place to go, while to confirm, gates open at 12.30 p.m. with this third day of the festival running through until 10 p.m.
Now, it goes without saying that we will be there to review & report on it all and having kept a close eye on that all important weather, it looks like showers will dominate the day, so we will definitely be armed with an umbrella & maybe some sturdy boots as it is likely to be damp under foot. So, if you see us sliding or running around, no doubt screaming “…GET OFF ME!!…” as a gregarious girl chases us shouting “…I WANT MY PORDDIGE!!…” then stop us in our tracks & say hi, but moreover make sure you “Go There! Be There!” (DISCO MATT)