Posts Tagged ‘Steven React Sharp’
Having commenced the year with a colossal classics celebration, our first dervish dominated by a performance of prolific Pitron proportions, who would have thought that our concluding dancing day would find us soaking up a set so spectacularly similar & stunning, Steve once again at the epicentre of our excitable cavorting, the club on both occasions being Beyond, this final fling of our year proving the most emotionally enthralling epilogue to 2012 we could have wished for, but what made this the most momentous Beyond meet of the month, possibly of the year?
When it comes to traditions we have many, our lives driven by orderly actions & organised schedules, while, on particular days of the year, we follow rituals with religious zeal, Christmas Day an example where without our beloved Chitty, Chitty, Bang, Bang, we would never feel or be the same, our nearest & dearest sometimes painfully aware of that organisation & order we demand, alarms reminding us of activities that should be instinctive and we very much a fish out of water when attempting manage either meets or trips on a wing & a prayer. And when it comes to clubbing, we are the same, impromptu appearances very rare indeed, while those certain days & times of the year demand exacting event attendances, New Year’s Day probably our most fastidious, when a collection of constants have reigned supreme over our clubbing cavorting, one brand standing head & shoulders above the rest in this regard, having been part & parcel of our New year’s Day morning’s for the best part of the last decade. But more recently it has also been the club where we have delighted in our last December dance of the passing year, meaning we end the old & start the new as we have left of and then mean to go on.
We are, naturally, talking about Beyond, the spectacularly scintillating Sunday morning meet that has, virtually single handily, re-written the afterhours rule book, in what had, previous to its launch in 2001, had been pretty much uncharted territory, only Trade breaking the night-time clubbing norm, as colossal a club Laurence Malice’s meet was, it never amassed anywhere near the broad appeal that its Sunday successor did and has. Indeed, while Trade’s music policy never really shifted from tough tech, well apart from a little lite lounge injection here & there, Beyond has always catered from a diverse dynasty of dancing devotees, the three spaces of its former home, the Colosseum, and its brilliant base now, the amazing & atmospheric Area, serving up a superb spectrum of sounds to suit a wide range of house music tastes. And this has been the core of Beyond’s staggering success, a brand that has trodden far more international steps than its predecessor, has scooped annual press & publication awards that stretch deep into double figures, while with its “all roads leads to” reputation, the broad appeal & unrelenting popularity of this phenomenal party never ceases to amaze us.
So, while we had, just a couple of days before, announced that we would be cancelling all remaining clubbing commitments for 2012, this following an awful incident on Christmas night, a mound of messages of support, phone calls & texts, all combined to sway our steadfast stance, the phrase “…don’t let THEM ruin your plans…” ringing in our ears while the telling blows that combined to confound our cancellation choice, firstly a marvellous message that included “…they might shove you to the ground & rob you, but nothing keeps us beyond regulars from the dancefloor..” and secondly, the statement that Steve Pitron has always stood us to, that being “…only pressing family issues or if you are on your death bed are valid excuses for missing Beyond…”, meaning it was a “…what time?!…” text that invoking an excited reaction and a 5.30 pickup that delivered us to Area’s doors and into the hands of our favourite club of all time, for an emotionally enthralling epilogue come last dance of 2012. And with a warm greeting from Minty on the door, it was clear Steve was anxious to get the main room party going, he losing us in the queue, although with a somewhat unfriendly security search over, we were soon in and, like Mr Pitron, eager to get going, dispelling the dismal memories of the Christmas night incident, although painfully aware of the wave of questions & comments that would come. But with the likes of Ben Kaye, Smalls, Bel, along with an arriving & excitable Peter, we were in captivating company and what lay ahead would prove to be three hours of monumental music & masses of fun-filled frolicking to elevate this to one of the best Beyond’s of the year/
With the signal to get the main room going given, Steve speedily set about heavenly house music hat-tricks, one after the other, as a cavorting pre New Year crowd that was expected to be thin on the ground, packed out the main room as though it was a special event, bare torso muscle men up on the podiums and faces a-plenty passing us by and even joining us a bevy of Brazilians including the marvellous Mhardeen, the delectable Dudu & the fabulous Fabio. But plenty others made our morning magical included Dan Kelly, Mark Williams, James Brewer, Summer Doll Nguyen, & Dorin Andrei, all gloriously greeting us, while in greeting terms, no-one can quite top Jamie Head, we catching him while out on the terrace trying to post an Instagram shot of Steve & Smalls, this after the first of many tickling chases, although from an unexpected source, mark Williams the pranking perpetrator. However, inside was where all the emotionally enthralling & exciting eruptions were going to take place, Peter in playful mood, pinning us into our spot corner & riding our leg, much to Mr Pitron’s delight, while the man himself was masterminding some mesmeric music, a mixture of classics, classics re-hashed, 2012 big hitters & new tracks, sending us stratospheric, highlights including “Stay”, “Some Kind Of Rush”, “Got To Be Strong”, “Can’t Stop Me”, while sheer yet scintillating surprises were floor filler favourites from yesteryear, “Souk” & “Acapella” that went down an absolute storm.
Now, the awful Christmas night end that had been plaguing us was all but dissolved, rather the magical music, the prolific people and the amazing atmosphere were taking centre stage in our thoughts, stints on our spot swapped with privileged position next to our premier player (haven’t called him that for a while) Mr Pitron’s performance proving not just pitch perfect but actually nothing short of phenomenal, it clear from the expressions on his face and his body language, that is was right in the zone and enjoying every minute. And the party people down on the dancefloor were lapping up every second of his stunning set, their arm waving, whooping & whistling reactions speaking their own volumes, while we were in heaven in the D.J. booth with our mixing master & with lighting & technical genius Smalls, the times we have spent with them in this privileged position across the year, magical 2012 memories highlights, this morning being no different, while it was also clear Mr Pitron was in playful mood, the inevitable tickling frenzies leaving us squealing & squirming as both he & Smalls pinned us in the sound cupboard. But Peter was to add to all this bawdy bravado too, more leg riding lunges leaving us on the exciting edge, while others joined in on the joviality, Mhardeen, among many more chasing & attempting to tickle us (we are a sensitive soul), while it would be the terrific Tom Fuller that would temporarily rescue us, a respite in the chapel space giving us time to take stock for the final stint of Steve’s set.
And what a stint it proved to be, yet more classics intermixed with 2012 anthems amassing an awesome Area atmosphere, the lighting at fabulously full tilt and with Eleckta Paris & her dance troupe on NYD preparation duty rest, the music was the majority of the talking, news having reached us that both Hifi Sean & Jamie Head had nailed prolific & pulsating performances in the chapel & the terrace respectively. But it was the main room performance we were concentrating on and while an early showing of the towering “Timebomb” had been the only Steve selection to tumble our tears, the main protagonist pick in his armoury would leave us wonderfully weeping, the brilliant “Beautiful Lie” catching us off guard gloriously although it would be the spectacular “Symphony”, neatly followed by the simply stunning “Strange Fruit”, interestingly on its first play in a Pitron Beyond performance, that would leave us breathless in emotional eruptions, recapturing the superb spine tingling sensations we had succumbed to on hearing both of them within Steve’s WE Formula 2” podcast. “Symphony” & “Strange Fruit” stunned, the rest of our stay at this prolific party was a bonus, The Sharp Boys arrival & welcomes another filler on top of the friendly support we had received all morning, although with Steve’s set over and a final tickling frenzy done, it was time to wend our weary way home to reflect on, what was without doubt, one of the most monumental meets, not just of December, but of the year.
Well what can we say to add to all that? Well, in brief, a stunning Steve set, an awesome Area atmosphere, a flock of fantastic friends, mesmeric music and exceptional lighting effects, all combined to make this a morning that only delectable dreams are made of. Yet this is the epitome of Beyond, it never failing to deliver delightfully in all departments, it standing head & shoulders above the capital circuit clubbing competition in every wonderful way. And to attract the kind of numbers just a two days before the New Year and on the cusp of one of the biggest Beyond bashes on the calendar, is proof of the pudding in our humble pie opinion, that it is every bit as popular now, as it was this time last year, and the year before that and the years before that. What the founder of this phenomenal weekly afterhours outing, Craig Elder, has created is a club that we can safely say ranks as one of the best on the globe, our experiences of scores of others both here in London & abroad, suitably qualifying us to make this considerable claim. But while La Demence, Muccassassina & Alegria come close, Beyond in our books is the best and so to spend our last dance of 2012 in its hands, adding to the myriad of meets this year alone, very much proved the most emotionally enthralling epilogue that this review reflection title suggests, the final few words having to go to a Pitron performance of epic proportions that, like this colossal club, could, no will possibly, probably, definitely turn out to be top of our Y.E. tree. (DISCO MATT)
It will be starting 2013 as it means to go on and is ended 2012 as it has done for the whole of the year, at the top of the capitals clubbing circuit game, Beyond once again making it to our “Pick Of The Day” choice for today (Sun 30th Dec), all the party promo a banner selection away opposite or an image click below, while we edit the event info after ticking the turntable troops beats boxes beneath.
While we cannot wait to wave goodbye to 2012, ringing the New Year in with our traditional trip to what has, without question, become our favourite club of all time, given the circumstances that condemned our Christmas Day clubbing plans, we had decided to cancel all commitments until our trip to Paris for Scream on 5th January, a mound of messages of support, some positive thinking & the world wise words from a fellow clubber, all combined to chase away our down in the dumps disposition. Then when we realised we could end 2102 on a heavenly house music high, a terrific team of turntable troops barnstorming Beyond, no doubt with a bevy of brilliant beats, we quickly came to the conclusion that to stick to our cancelled clubbing schedule plans & principles were doomed to dissolve into thin air. So who has swayed us so?, the simple & honest answer to that question being the dream team of D.J.’s on duty at this latest Beyond bash, Hifi Sean sorting the superb sounds in the chapel from 1 .am., while a switch to the terrace at 3 finds Jamie Head in his preferred Beyond place, no doubt serving up another scintillating set to follow on outstanding one last week. But it will be our spot and a three hour Steve Pitron main room performance that will further lift our sagging seasonal spirits, he sure to tickle our tunes tastebuds with a ton of terrific tracks, many that will tumble those trademark tears, while we reckon come 9 a.m., there may be actual tickles to add to the showings of “the cups”, all this while The Sharp Boys steer the Beyond supporters & soundtrack through till the midday finish.
So, in the knowledge that we have put forward a convincing case for you to join us on the Area dancefloor, here is what Beyond’s promoter Ben Kaye has to say about this “Music Is All You Need” event…
“…I really hope everyone had a great Christmas, ate enough over the holidays, got all the gifts they wanted and everyone’s stockings were suitably filled – one way or another; and if by going by my own past experiences are some of you getting a little bored, contemplating going out before NYE especially if you are off work?! Well….. This Sunday Beyond is open at Midnight; regular as clockwork for our regulars; or a great excuse to burn off the calories you possibly gained over xmas…” he adding “…I personally love the atmosphere at this particular Beyond so if you are in London, come and experience the Beyond magic, we are open from 12 midnight and the lady at the door will be Hrh Minty while Elektra and her delectable dancing team are working hard preparing for our NYD superparty, so have been given way to the music on this one occasion…”
And given both Ben’s & our boosting of this Beyond bash, all that’s left to say & do is to share the events page with you, http://facebook.com/events/191006581037940/, the clubs page, http://facebook.com/beyondclub and the official website, http://orangenation.co.uk, while if we can cancel our cancelled plans, you can too, so see you on the dancefloor shortly, safe in the knowledge that you will “Go There! Be There! (DISCO MATT)
From A.M. to WE, Boylesque to Beyond, Onyx to Orange, plus Gravity, Later & newbie Infamous too, there is no doubt that Orange Nation is a superb Vauxhall & Southwark clubbing torre de force this “World Pride” weekend, also holding sway in Soho with an exclusive outdoor event, Disco Matt dishing up the detail of a superb sequence of showings courtesy of this capital clubbing conglomerate.
As we sit on the scene sidelines swinging in & out of our summer sabbatical, we are quite horrified by the sound bites we are seeing over what is clearly a shocking shambles of a so called World Pride event, the latest statement from Pride London which includes this “…our sincerest apologies, Pride London deeply regrets the situation we have found ourselves in …” issued following a wave of criticism of their handling of World Pride, clear evidence that not only will this year’s London Pride festival be nothing short of a flop, but when the capital sees itself in the global spotlight, it is a damning disgrace that the both committee presiding over Pride in London & the powers that be holding the purse strings, have failed the community at such a late stage. However, with no such committee & commitment problems, it comes as a huge sigh of relief that from the ashes of cancelled dance stages & arenas comes the saviour that will be Soho, Vauxhall & Shoreditch in the hands of Orange Nation, who have no less than eight clubbing parties across the latter two districts & one huge pre-party come party planned for Soho.
So putting World Pride to one side, let’s take you through the whole Orange Nation offer, including that planned Soho party, first up being Gravity this Friday morning (6th Jul) which (quite tongue in cheek to Pride London) has been called “It’s Definitely Happening”, although we do wonder how long looking into the morning mirror that title took, although in all fairness the team do say, “…it’s Pride weekend, so start as you mean to go on…”, Gravity certainly the place to do that, especially if you want your weekend to start early on Friday morning, doors opening to this event at 2 a.m. & the club running to a “v late” timing. And with D.J.’s on duty including Fat Tony & Verity Mayes, plus with host JJ Clark zooming across from Room Service, no doubt with plenty of followers in his tracks, while Gravity’s promoter Danny Boyce will be sure to give you the warmest of welcomes, this is the best place to be at the start of your weekend, especially if its starts on Friday. Plus, with entry on offer at just £5 before 3 a.m. with a flyer or pass, these being handed out by a bevy of boys around Soho on Thursday night, as well as being available from JJ at Room Service, while its £8 thereafter or £10 on the door, more info available at http://facebook.com/gravitythursdays.
Into Friday we find ourselves and usually it would be Onyx at Area neatly followed by A:M at Fire, although as has been the trend in recent months, when it comes to the big weekends (& this is one such weekend), the clubs combine to make one huge happening stretching close on twelve hours, an equally towering team of D.J.’s flying the respective club flags. So, kicking off at 11 p.m. & Fire playing host, this “Pride Warm Up” party sees the two club D.J. camps collide, in the Onyx corner we finding Matt Bogard & Jonny M playing upfront & energetic house with plenty of vocal intentions in the main room, while is pop & dance anthems from gender benders Tasty Tim & Lady Lloyd in the lounge, while packing a powerful punch in the A:M corner are all star residents Fat Tony D’Johnny, Jamie Head, Alan K, Paulo Moreno & David Jimenez, very much cementing the character of this amazing afterhours club which promoter Steven Sharp is always clear to stress, “…it’s all about the music…”. Mind you, with the amount of hosts on duty you may be forgiven for thinking otherwise, Nick Adams Byam ability assisting the delightful Chrissy Darling (could he be a pretty young thing?!?!) while A:M wise, it’s the dynamic duo of Danny Boyce & Minty, Chrissy presiding over the door duty early on, while Minty takes over later. And talking of the door, entry packages are pretty reasonable, as a wee trip to http://gayguestlists.com/onyx could get you in gratis, while for others & those with a flyer it’s a mere £6 before 3 a.m., rising to £8 before 5 a.m. & then £10 thereafter, while if you don’t want to go foraging for a flyer, then you can rather click on http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2012-07/06/onyx-vs-a-m-fire-pride-warm-up for that £8 price tag while entry on the door is £12 after 3 a.m.
So onward to Saturday and with both the parade & the “official” World Pride after events covered in confusion, Soho will no doubt be playing host to the lion’s share of the action, Orange Nation in the thick of the action, or should we say in the middle of it, having secured Comptons who will be playing host to the WE “Players” pre-party. Now, naturally we have been digging for details and with plans to have an outside stage very much in the balance, we can nevertheless confirm that, as of going to press, this pre-party will happen, whether inside or out, D.J.’s on duty confirmed as Paul Heron, Matt Bogard & Fat Tony, while if the green light for an outside stage goes ahead, then the whole Orange Nation residency team will be rolled out in back-to-back form, so Steve Pitron & Jamie Head, Alan K & Paulo Moreno, Jonny M & The Oli, D’Johnny & David Jimenez and Verity Mayes & Bryony Masters. However, with Westminster council crying wolf on issues of policing, safety & funding, as well as having supposedly issued a licensing edict to all venues, the final decision on this outside stage will not be made until after a major meeting which takes place tomorrow, so watch this space for a “hot off the press” newsflash as the decision hits our desk. Mind you, whichever way it goes, Comptons is always the biggest & best Pride melting pot & with Orange nation plus WE Party involved, it will be even more so.
Now talking of WE, if time allows, we will be delivering a full on focus & devotion to what will undoubtedly be the biggest party of the whole Pride weekend, The Coronet in Elephant & Castle once again playing host this Saturday (7th July), while the D.J. line-up is mighty & impressive as the place, WE’s very own resident roving D.J. Carlos Gallardo back to London by popular demand & sure to thrill with tons of towering tunes neatly balanced between those benchmark euro-beats & uplifting vocal injections, while it will be an all out progressive assault from our Italian stallion, Pagano, the tones turning tech when Paul Heron & D’Johnny take to the decks. But with Room Service’s Kris Di Angelis & Matt Bogard going back-to-back in the second space, there will certainly be an alternative electro twisted trip to be made, Munroe Bergdorf playing host upstairs, while the main arena will be in the very capable hands both Ben Kaye & JJ Clark. So, let’s rattle through the rest of the detail which goes like this, doors opening at 10 p.m. & the club running through till 6.am., advance tickets available online via http://wepartylondon.com &/or http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2012-07/07/we-party-london-we-players-pride-party, at the standard £18 price tag (yes those £10 &£15 super advance ones went really quickly), while outlets Prowler, Clone Zone, 50 & Solarstation are your Soho sources, along with Comptons & Ku-Bar, entry we believe available on the door, but expect to pay more.
But for those that may be WE’d out or are in search of something a little more intimate compared to the full on theatre size experience, the Orange Nation team have come up trumps with “Boylesque”, in what has been labelled as “…the alternative pride party…” although is likely to have massive mainstream appeal, not least that international gay icon, pop star, D.J. & altogether good egg, superstar Boy George is at the centre of, not only the title of this club night, but the entertainment too. And having announced that he will be performing live for the first time in over two years, while we have been sworn to secrecy, the is one stunningly spectacular surprise up his sleeve, meaning that you will be far from disappointed if you trade your W & E for a B & G. But more than that, we are told that artists flown in especially for this event (we really cannot say, sorry) performing both D.J. sets & songs (itching to tell!!), okay just two then, Jeremy Healy & Jon Pleased, but all we will say is that it’s not to be missed. So what more can we say, well apart from George & co?, well, the “alternative” burlesque (see what they did with the title?!) theme will be extenuated by a score of sexy boys & girls on stage, while the second space will be a “Fire” room showcasing some of the clubs finest D.J.’s (naturally those not on duty elsewhere!), Fat Tony (B G’s best buddy), Jamie Head & Verity Mayes on decks duty, while the third room will be given away to Walt Utz & Madame Jojo’s who will present a show spectacle with a line up of London’s most notorious stars from the cabaret circuit. Now we really cannot say anymore (stop it!!!) apart from dipping through the detail, “Boylesque” kicking off at Fire from 11 p.m. this Saturday (7th July) & running through to a planned 6 a.m. finish, advance tickets priced at just £10 (absolute bargain!) still available at http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2012-07/07/boylesque-boy-george-s-alternative-pride-party, while you can check-in at the usual Soho outlets for handpicked passes.
Onwards we go and to Beyond and like WE, if time permits we will be devoting a special feature to it as this looks like being every bit the roadblock events that is always is come big weekends, and some we say, not least when you consider that the team have “…pulled out all the stops to bring one of the world’s best D.J.’s to London…” NYC’s Hector Fonseca bringing with him a resounding repertoire of remixes, no less than 5 having reached number one in the billboard charts last year alone, hence we are chomping at the bit to feature him is this special focus. But with Tel Aviv’s FFF Group also jetting in their own package of players in the form of D.J. Tal Cohen & international drag performer K Long, both who featured in the FFF party at Fire last year, Beyond certainly has the global feel that that only WE Party & Hustlaball can match this weekend. Add to that London all star cast including Steve Pitron, The Sharp Boys, Hifi Sean, Fat Tony, D’Johnny & Paul Christian, together with back-to-back sets from Alan K & Paulo Moreno and Verity Mayes & Bryony Masters, so if there was ever a club that was about the music for us, then it is Beyond & not least this “World Pride” spectacular. So, skipping through the detail, it’s a 3 a.m. start at Area this Sunday (8th July) with entry simply £15 in advance (the best commodore you will spend this weekend) either online at http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2012/07/08/beyond-world-pride-2012 or at those Soho outlets, while entry will be available on the door but expect to pay more & probably wait even longer, Ben Kaye & JJ Clark teaming up gain, as they did for WE, while no special Beyond would ever be the same without the tremendous Tom Fuller.
So, on the home straight (ish) and Later comes next, the team rolling out yet another fun filled frolic in the form of the now infamous “Funfair” format, the Later garden a hot bed of happy happenings with rides & games stalls, while a fortune teller will be sitting on his /her corner ready to tell you what is around your corner. Plus with the pool filled up if the weather permits & the bbq, an indelible ingredient of any Later party, stacked with sausages & brimming with burgers, that along with some other surprises in store and out will be the new clubbing in. That said, inside the musical heat will be turned right up full, resident D.J.’s Jamie Head, D’Johnny & Paul Heron cooking on tunes gas mark nine, while hostess Andrea & her boys (yes she has a bevy of them) will be causing enough madness & mayhem to make this a party to remember. And with host venue Fire’s doors opening at 11.30 a.m. this Sunday (8th July), the club running through to 8 p.m., with discount wristbands/stamps available at Beyond, standard entry is available online at http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2012-07/08/later-funfair or on the door, priced at £10, we are pretty sure you will be walking away come 8 p.m. with the biggest smile on your face, candy floss round your lips & a shiny bum from all that sliding, not to mention sore feet from dancing.
Now we would normally finish with Orange (which we will), but will quickly mention new club “Infamous” which launches at Covert on Sunday night from 6 p.m. details coming your way via our extra bites post “Princely Sum of A Soiree”, which paves the way for the “From Orange With Pride”, the organisers saying of the Pride closing event saying “…you’ve had the world, now get a true taste of London & the biggest last dance of Pride 2012…” as it is sure to be with not just the “Orange Family” of D.J.’s that include The Oli, Fat Tony & the Sharp Boys, but Hifi Sean is back too, starring in Fire’s main room alongside guest slot guy Paul heron (my he is a busy boy this weekend, we count five gigs at least!), while the event also boats the newly named RAW Future Heroes space with Lee Yeomans in charge of the tunes. But it’s Pride and so we all know what track/record that means, “A Deeper Love” among a handful of other hits performed by special PA Elliotte Williams, very much crowning this citric colossus which kick starts at 11 p.m. on Sunday (8th July) & carries you deep into Monday morning & a date with your day off diary, http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2012-07/08/from-orange-with-pride-london-s-biggest-pride-closing-party the place to go for advance tickets, priced at just £10, while its half that price with a flyer before 1 a.m., door hosts Chrissy Darling & Minty managing your efficient entry & them cheerful cavorting ala citric style.
So that’s the Orange Nation World Pride package and what an enthrallingly extensive one it is too, we finishing by reminding you that advance tickets are very much the way (especially for WE & Beyond), Solarstation not just a superb source, but also an opportunity for you to soak up some sun, of the sun-bed variety of course, as we all want to look at our best for World Pride, a quick visit to http://solarstation.co.uk revealing all you need to know before revealing yourselves to some bronzing brightness. That just leaves us to wish you a very happy World Pride, even if the event itself looks like being a bit of a wash-out, as there is always the league of Orange Nation clubs to turn & to take to. (DISCO MATT)
We look back over the years and find a whole host of clubs that have become bywords for hedonism, for decadent behaviour and outright debauchery, Trade probably heading a cast that includes FF, Sherbert, Warriors & Medikation in pushing the boundaries of normality and sending us into clubbing territory that we never thought we would tread. But tread we did, often extending our weekends deep into Monday morning then opting out of sleep as we assumed the normality of our office working week switching the dancefloor for the desk, often collapsing in an exhaustive state come Monday night. Yet, whilst nearly all these clubs were a product of the nineties, it was the noughties that would sport what has become the naughtiest of afterhours debauchery, Orange, which has pretty much dominated the Monday morning market for ten years and now in its twelfth, seems to have breathed new life into itself, spurning a whole new following that fails to flinch with the concept of partying deep into the working week.
Yet for us, Orange is a pretty irregular occurrence, as Monday morning generally signals us landing from a weekend that has started on a Thursday and rarely stops still Sunday. Yet, come a Bank Holiday or extended weekend, Orange always seems to throw up some of the best events around, whether it be at their traditional home, Fire, or over at Area, which has sported some prolific parties, their “Summer Of Love” series just one of many examples that have really done it for us, a host of afterparties throughout 2010. Indeed, in recognition of just how good Orange can be, we awarded it best afterparty slot of the year, an accolade well deserved as Orange never failed to deliver throughout the year, extending our weekends well beyond the boundaries of normality in deliciously debaucherous fashion. So, as 2011 dawned, we were faced with yet another afterparty treat, this time following the massive WE Attacks at The Coronet, although having been such an energy draining weekend, would Orange survive to tell the tale and just how did this latest afterparty in a long series of successes fare?
Having taken an hour or so to re-charge our batteries from the WE Attacks main event, feeling a little out of sorts we toyed with the idea of giving the afterparty a miss, but in true London original party boy style, we headed down to Fire and to the attraction of Orange in this first bank Holiday Monday of the year. Finding ourselves inside the smart new Fire entrance at not long turned 8 a.m., a short wait at the coatcheck soon let us loose on the club proper, the first port of call being the bar for beverage refreshment to set us on our way. So, in typical fashion we sought to find our bearings, heading down the new elevated sidewalk to the right hand side of the extended & new look main room, which was pretty full of revellers, surprising considering that the New year weekend had been so long, yet un surprising in the fact that London & gayland London particularly, has become renowned for stretching the boundaries of normality, Orange a perfect example of the theory rolling out into practice.
Before we could investigate the second, RAW room space, we bumped into a beaming Guy Scheiman, whom we had met & gained an introduction, just hours before at The WE Attacks event, Guy leading us through to the Mirrorarch room to grab a concentrated chat about all things music, writing & the New Year in general, he also dropping into our colourful conversation, his up-coming birthday as well as his commitment to a return flight home later in the day, all hinting towards his early departure, although with a promise that we would catch up later, we let him loose to retire. But as one liaison ended, another started, the ever adoring Minty right behind us and consumed with a very good looking man who was definitely making her morning. So, whilst this Minty meet was right up our street, to save feeling like a gooseberry in her man meat pie, we headed off in the direction of the D.J. booth to say our hello’s to Hifi Sean, who was in charge of the deep & delicious house that was beginning to fill out this RAW room space, a dart onto the dancefloor also catching a foursome of familiar faces whom we had partied with on the Thames not two months before and whom had since become clubbing companions at many an event.
However it was clear that we weren’t quite on top form, our feet a little agitated and our head a little dizzy, leaving us a tad undecided as to which space should get our devotion, a dive into the main room, which was now packed to the rafters, resigning us to squeeze into a spot just left of the D.J. booth (surprise, surprise), while both Fat Tony and the terrific Tonnic stoked up the already amazing atmosphere even more. And having seen this duo in action so many times, it did make us feel more at ease with our lot, Tonnic’s skilful use of vocals in adding spice to Tony’s sound selections, not overpowering & domineering like some could be, rather her timely additions adding just the right amount of tasteful tones to the treats of tracks Mr D.J. was delivering, the outrageousness of the Orange crowd at its brilliant best, not least one individual on the small stage, wearing a pig’s head costume that was grabbing amazement & attention from admirers around. Finding our stride, we slid into a more sizeable space to strut our stuff, giving us an opportunity to savour the much improved Fire main room in full swing, the laser lighting & the Orange production & pyro’s adding to the ever building atmosphere of the official WE afterparty, Fat Tony & Tonnic doing their bit brilliantly.
Now we seemed to be getting back into our party mood, although as the area continued to fill and the party people poured in, our need for space to dance overwhelmed our desire to soak up the sounds, so we headed outside in need of air & respite for a while, once again catching up with Minty, but also with Booster boy Romain Lopez and then the ever attentive & generous Steven Sharp, not just Orange’s supreme promoter, but an amazing D.J./Producer to boot, as well as a much missed main man at Beyond. Indeed we took this moment to remark on just how much we missed him at the helm of our favourite afterhours, Beyond very much holding a special place in our heart and under Steven’s steership, enjoying some of its best days & exceptional events, not least “Tokyo” back in October, which was our best of that year. However, this is taking nothing away from his efforts at Orange, indeed the club saw a major resurgence in popularity during 2010 due to his efforts, hence we lauding our special commendation on him for his services to the scene throughout the year.
But cutting back to the chase, it was the WE Afterparty that called for our attention and with our long chat with Steven, Romain & Minty over, it was time to soak up more of the superb sounds on offer inside, David Jimenez now in charge of the tunes in the RAW room, while it seemed the unstoppable Fat Tony was still packing them in on the main room dancefloor, we struggling to find any sort of space by the stage, resigning us to a position at the back of the room, albeit that we could get an all-encompassing view of the audacious action unfolding. And from this new found expanse, at least we had the room to stretch our legs and entertain a little of the “Doing The Disco Matt” dancing we love so much, one individual determined to get us swinging on our spot as he spun himself around us continually, craving for a little attention maybe, but definitely in a happy party mood, as were pretty much everyone in this madcap main room of Orange outrageousness. However, with the inevitable conclusion that we weren’t quite on top form and the ravages of the previous three days of non-stop indulgence taking its toll, we were destined to hang up our dancing boots for another weekend at least, waving farewell to this final fling in our New Year forays, heading home to hit our pillow and ponder over this citric colossus in consummate comfort.
Orange has always proven to be the perfect ending to a full on Bank Holiday of pristine partying, it having gained the reputation as the best brand to entertain afterparty’s, examples of which littered the listings in 2010 and this first outing of the year proved to be just the same. However, with the weekend having been an exhaustive one for many, some starting at Beyond on NYD and not stopping until here, hence fitting in a possible eight or so parties, it came as no surprise that this WE wave-off wasn’t quite as packed as expected. However, in this Orange event, we cannot deny that it more than did its job and with standout showings from both Fat Tony & Tonnic, as well as a superb supporting cast of Hifi Sean, David Jimenez & Gonzalo, there couldn’t have been a better way to round off our weekend romp of enthralling events that counted to a mere six. And whilst our stay was shorter than we would have liked, from what we saw, it proved a success, plus evidence that Orange remains a force to be reckoned with in the afterhours & afterparty market, although whether it & its promoter receive the accolades they deserve will remain to be seen, that said, they certainly get & got our vote. (DISCO MATT)
No-one can deny just how successful As One was when it launched to an unsuspecting public exactly a year ago, although no-one quite expected that a simple amalgamation of minds would prove to be the out & out hit that it was. Yet, the marriage of minds, clubbing brands, promoters & concepts under one roof proved an irresistible draw for scores of hundreds of New Year revellers, Fire in Vauxhall being the melting pot for what, we at least, concluded was the resounding success story of 2010. Indeed in summing up the year not two weeks ago, we gave the brand the accolade as our best newcomer, not least that during the year, it built on that initial success with not one, but two exceptional events, the Easter gathering, if anything, even busier than the inaugural meet, while that August Bank Holiday bash, considered as a little bit of an afterthought, actually proved nearly as successful as the others, even if the format had changed to a Sunday afternoon.
But three trips were all we were going to see of As One in year one, but such had been the buzz surrounding the first affair, a repeat was surely on the cards, especially given just how the weekend would fail, 1st January 2011 happening to be a Saturday and as such, in prime position to accommodate the success of 2010 and herald one of the best starts to a New year we had seen in many. And casting our eyes across the nuts & bolts of this brands latest offering, much of the original elements were present that had made it such a success, Lovechild was included, Lo-Profile part of the package, Meagwoof had muscled in again, even Orange took centre-stage with its own citric brand, while Queer Nation was a welcome addition to a band of happy As One players that would surely signal a superb success. But whilst the numbers were to exceed even the most optimistic expectations, did As One deliver as it had twelve months ago? and if so, to what degree?
Arriving at Fire’s rear entrance at just before 1 am, we were greeting by a beaming Steven React Sharp who was masterminding peoples smooth entrance into the club and he needed to, as the queue was pretty extensive & stretching round the corner, we not realising at the time that the team were making use of all three entries to ferry folk in. But before we realised we should have been with Dave Cross round the front, he catching us as we were being taken through, a quick happy New Year is all we managed with Dave before been red carpeted right into the thick of the As One action inside. Mind you, we had to drop off our belongings first and caught the gaze of Simon Patrick who was as pleased to see us as we were him, this slight yet sweet distraction only momentarily halting our strides towards being released to soak up the As One party atmosphere to come.
So we were in and it was immediately evident that many had chosen to arrive early, the Mirrorarch room already packed solid with New year revellers wrapping themselves up in the music Lovechild style, been served up in scintillating style by a beaming Jc Christopher, who was clearly in the zone as we approached the D.J. booth. However, this was not before we had taken a quick tour of duty across a pumping & pulsating Fire, first checking out Orange main room which was a mass of gyrating girls & bear chested boys, even the Lo-Profile room was brimming with party heads ready for a full onslaught of hedonistic house music to come. But leaving our pal Stephen behind, we skirted the scenery of the lounge & the intentions of D.J. , squeezed through the main Orange room and the temptations of Brazilian special guest Anna Paula, rather aiming back for the Mirrorarch & the lure of Lovechild. And were weren’t to be disappointed, as Mr Christpher was chalking up probably one of the best sets we have witnessed from him ever, the whole room exploded with excitement at his rousing & uplifting tunes, the podiums swamped with scantily clad men, lapping up every minute of his magical music.
So we found ourselves in pole position to see the first of a few stage shows by Bruno Knight & his muscular raunchy crew, all five of these gorgeous hunks, ascending the stage & showing more than just their assets to an adoring crowd, we getting in position to snap a few of our own shots while the rest of the gay paparazzi, including Chris Jepson & SeenQueen’s Brent Nicholls, jockeyed to get that all important photo. With the first of the shows over, we took a few moments to catch up with Mr Nicholls, while Alessandro assumed the Lovechild decks, taking the crowd on a slightly tougher yet enthralling journey of hedonistic house, this second of six As One rooms proving as popular as it had been at the last three outings, the atmosphere enthralling and the people equally so. And the room was to sport two prolific performances on top of Jc & Ale, as Gonzalo Rivas first wooed & wowed with a wonderful set full of hard hitting tech & progressive bets, then special guest D.J. Guy Scheiman took it to another level with a scintillating set which included heaps of new & terrific tunes, including his very own remix of Pagano’s “Loca”, & his mix of Kylie Minogue’s “Get Outta My Way”, both short of blowing the roof of the Mirrorarch room & belying this young man’s immense studio skills to match his D.J’ing talent.
But we were Lo-Profile room bound, although not before dropping in on both the Megawoof & the Queer Nation rooms, each one brimming with beautiful bodies & party goers that were finding retreat from the main two Orange & Lovechild spaces which, by now, were roadblock affairs, hardly a square inch unoccupied, all very much soaking up the splendour of this As One event. Finding solace in the lounge, we landed a spot by the D.J. booth (surprise, surprise) where Brent Nicholls had not long assumed control and was treating us to an impromptu 2010 best bits string of sounds, from Pirupa’s “Sweet Devil”, to Dennis Christopher’s “No More Lies”, JC’s “Souk” rousing the whole room and then the virtually mandatory “Release Me” exploding the lounge into a hotbed of house music heaven, the classic “Miracle” receiving yet another rapturous reaction like it had done in Lo-Profile proper back on their 3rd birthday, Brent somehow managing to hit our musical mark with each & every track. So, as tempting it was to go and check out the other rooms, we were going absolutely nowhere, even an arriving Alan X agreeing that this was the place to be compared with the seething masses in both the Orange & Lovechild rooms, we leaving it to our pal Stephen to brave the crowds in search of friend Andrea & the Czech crew.
With Brent’s three hour superb set over, we having over heated with enthusiasm for his tremendous tunes choices, decided it was time to brave the main room for the last leg of our As One stay, but such was the appeal of incumbent D.J. Fat Tony and the extent of the crowd, that we were forced to find one of only a few spots right at the top of the room by the bar, although this gave us a brilliant vantage point of the action in front, the massive LED screens at full tilt & the As One signage & visuals complimenting the massive effects wonderfully. But as we had done in the lounge, our extravert activity in this packed out space soon sent our body temperatures soaring, requiring a sequence of trips to the outside terrace to cool down, many also escaping the heat inside, although not for long as a freezing dawn was rapidly chilling our hot heads and drawing us back inside to the incredible As One action, trading dips into the main room with stints in our favoured spot by the mirrorarch D.J. booth, Alessandro having assumed the decks for a second time to polish off one of the best As One parties so far and what would prove to be the most popular event of the New Year weekend. However, it was inevitable that the 7 a.m. finish would arrive, we choosing to beat the rush & collect our bits and bobs just short of the end, the next instalment in our schedule looming, Beyond across at Area already soaking up some spillage from this spectacular event, we waving goodbye to Fire to continue with our New Year merriment over the other side of Vauxhall.
When As One stormed onto the scene a year ago, you could have been forgiven for thinking that this was a “flash in the pan” affair, riding the crest of a celebratory wave when the world & his wife wanted to celebration by clubbing & cavorting. Yet, the follow parties proved there was a penchant for this magnificent marriage of minds and drawing different sections of the gay clubbing community together under one roof showed it still had plenty of steam even following the heady days of “Famous Five”. Yet, as secure this new clubbing experience could have seemed, no-one could quite believe the resounding response this latetst outing would result in. Without exception, no event in Fire’s history has attracted quite so many people through its doors across an event, each room full to the rafters virtually from start to finish and the atmosphere the best we have experienced in a long time. Each room played their part perfectly, although we cannot deny that it was incredibly hot at times, no surprise given the 1000’s of bodies packing out the place. So, as with a year ago, As One on NYD proved it salt, delivering in every respect and very much stealing the New Year show, making it an out & out success once again, all this meaning that we cannot wait for the next instalment of this colossal conglomeration. (DISCO MATT)
Wading through the myriad of video’s & music devotions we have picked out just a handful to share with you, in recognition of just what an exceptional event it was.
Nhamo of Mirrorballs TV has been producing top quality video’s of parties across the scene for a good 18 months now and is building a solid reputation for great quality & post event editing, his latest picking out some of the best bits of this awesome outing, which you can catch via http://facebook.com/video.php?v=1630423374629&oid=58956656526.
Next up is Alessandro Londra, who starred in the packed out & pulsating Lovechild room at this AS NYD spectacular, performing not once but twice to a capacity crowd, celebrating this exceptional event with a special two part compilation, part one already out an available at http://djalessandrolondra.podomatic.com/entry/2011-01-06T19_21_12-08_00
Special guest D.J. Guy Scheiman was one of the outstanding performers in a host of others that made an incredible impact at As One NYD 2011 and recorded a number of video’s highlighting some of the terrific tracks he played during his set, so we simply could resist sharing three of them with you, plus the link to this amazing remix of Kylie Minogue’s smash hit “Get Outta My Way”. Check them out at http://facebook.com//video/video.php?v=489971268285, http://facebook.com/video/video.php?v=489969153285, http://facebook.com/video/video.php?v=492715669766&oid=77745572210, and http://soundcloud.com/guysc/kylie-minogue-get-outta-my-way-guy-scheiman-no-way-radio-mix-2011
As we have now very much waived farewell to 2010 and ushered in the New year, there is much to look forward to in Disco Matt land in early 2011, as not only does January look like being just as hectic as December, but February signals a mini tour of France, Belgium & Holland, before the biggie, South Africa at the end of that month. However, before we move into full swing on our New Year with reports of all those prolific parties that made it a start to remember, we thought we would indulge you with a final nod to our Yardstick Year that was 2010 and bring together the polls & charts of the bars, clubs, events & music that made up our 2010. Plus, don’t forget that both our 2010 reviews, “A Yardstick Year” & “Terrific Twelve Months Of Tunes” are out right here at http://discomatt.com
So let’s crack on and look at those that hit the high notes in our bar, club, event pool of the year and whist not wishing to influence the ongoing SeenQueen 2010 “Your Disco Needs You” poll, here are our chart toppers & categories for those
- Best Club Brand – Beyond
- Best Club Brand Newcomer – As One
- Best Intl. Club Newcomer – The Week
- Best Club Weekly – Beyond
- Best Club Monthly – Lovechild
- Best Club Afterparty – Orange
- Best Club Afterhours – Beyond
- Best Bar – Profile
- Best Bar/Club – Lo-Profile
- Best Individual Event – Matinee “Open Air”
- Best Collective Event – London Global Dance Festival
- Best International Club – Berghain
- Best International Event – Lovechild “Christmas Ball” in Antwerp
- Best Club Promoter- Alex Erfan
- Special Commendation – Steven React Sharp
Now let’s turn to the music and the D.J.’s that made it a “Terrific Twelve Months Of Tunes” for us, special mentions going to the following who tipped our scales in 2010
- Best D.J. Newcomer – Javier Medina
- Best D.J. (London) – Brent Nicholls
- Best D.J. (International) – Leomeo
- Best D.J. Set (London) – Steve Pitron – Beyond “Tokyo” 10th October
- Best D.J. Set (International) – Fabio White – Hustlaball Berlin – 22nd October
Next up we rundown our top ten compilations of the year, a previously unreleased chart, but one issued due to popular demand
- Brent Nicholls – Get On MyGayFace
- Mikey D. – Lose Control
- Steve Pitron – WE Party Podcast
- Danny Verde – Escape From Paradise
- Nick Tckerniak – Matinee @ MOS
- Steve Pitron – Summer 2010
- Brent Nicholls – Let’s All Chant
- Brent Nicholls – Download 2010 “The Pervert Mix”
- Javier Medina – From Barcelona To London
- Gonzalo Rivas – Pride 2010
At last but by no means least, we chart those tracks that did it for us the most in 2010, cutting down our choice here from 40 to just 20, but don’t forget, you can catch the full chart both here at in a special feature on our friends’ SeenQueen’s site via the following link, http://seenqueen.com/web/2011/doing-the-disco-matt-hot-tunes-of-2010/
- Molella remix of Edward Maya & Vika Jingulina – Stereo Love
- Pirupa – Sweet Devil
- Mind Electric remix of Zoe Baldwi TV Rocks – Release Me
- John Dalhback remix of Mousse T’s – All Night Long
- Richard Earnshaw remix of Kenne Kursmochi’s – Take Me Back
- Medina – You & I
- Diagram Of The Heart – Dead Famous
- Milk & Sugar – Let the Love Take Over
- Dave Aude Remix of Alexis Jordan – Happiness
- Danny Verde remix of Pagano & Wayne G’s – Trapped
- Audio Jackers – Check it Out
- Danny Verde Radio Edit of Blake Lewis’ – Till We See The Sun
- Chocolate Puma vs Bing Players – Disco Electrique Revisited mix
- Lissat & Voltaxx remix of Tom Novy’s – Now Or Never
- Norman Dory remix of Sandy Rivera’s – Hide U
- Denzel Park vs Karina Chavez – World Go Round
- Dennis Christopher remix of Nightstylers – No More Lies
- Leomeo – The Sound Of C
- Miguel Picasso Feat Rebeka Brown – Show Me Your Love
- Alan X Peephole remix of Tcherniak & Thomas’s – My People
Well, that’s our 2010 in a chart topping snapshot, but don’t forget that our full reviews of the year can be found just a click away at http://discomatt.com/web/2010/12/dm-reports-a-yardstick-year-barclubevent-highlights-of-2010-special-reviewreport-31st-december/ & http://discomatt.com/web/2011/01/dm-reportsreviews-terrific-twelve-months-of-tunes-2010-year-music-review/, so here’s to a 2011 full of more clubs, more events & more D.J.’s and if 2010 is anything to go by, it’s going to be a cracking year. (DISCO MATT)
Back in July last year, following some disturbing developments with a favourite clubbing brand of ours, we decided to add to our already extensive family of reports, Disco Matters, a vehicle aimed at tackling the big issues of the day, delving into the new & exciting developments to hit the scene and also dealing with the tricky issues that the more mainstream press outlets tend to avoid. Disco Matters aimed to allow club & bar owners, promoters, event organisers, D.J.’s & scene figureheads the opportunity to respond to those issues, those developments & those exciting changes, having put them on the spot in full & frank discussions & interviews and we wanted to very much push the boundaries, yet deliver transparency & unbiased reporting with the ultimate aim, like all of our posts, to make the scene a stronger & richer place.
The aim was to make this a monthly feature and we started well, with a deep & probing look at Beyond in August, which at the time was facing a little controversy. However, in one of those full and frank interviews we promised, Steven React Sharp, Beyond’s then promoter, gave one of the best interviews we have seen in a long time (check the link to http://discomattpreview.blogspot.com/2010/08/disco-matters-beefing-up-beyond) and laid to rest many of the fears we had of this, our favourite clubbing brand. This was followed in September by an equalling interesting & probing interview with ex Matinee promoter Oliver M, who had recently been appointed as the new promoter of Orange Group afterhours club A:M, amidst much controversy of how a previously feuding relationship had turned working partnership. Oliver’s candid responses went down well, as did our Disco matters report encapsulating this exclusive interview which we published via both our former BlogSpot pages and here via http://discomatt.com/web/2010/10/disco-matt-ers-oliver-orange/.
Then, October was to herald a special focus on a social networking revolution, although as events of the month pretty much took over our Disco Matters plans, our planned report was shelved for close on three months as we not only focussed on our very own issues of the day which derailed our activity for a much of November, interestingly routed from a Disco matters subject matter. But we then got our teeth back into our passion for reviewing, reporting & promoting one of the world’s most prolific clubbing scene as well as expanding beyond the capital, visiting European events in both Berlin & Antwerp, as well as re-cementing our reputation as London’s original party boy, yet it was the launch of our new website that put Disco Matters back into focus, kind of bringing us full circle.
So, Disco Matters is very much back in its driving seat and ready for a full on re-launch, the focus now pointing towards that social networking revolution report that we conducted back at the end of September. But it doesn’t stop there, as we have plenty more to get our teeth into, so thought we would, on this “a re-cap, a re-launch” post, share with you our Disco Matters plans over the next three/four months
- January will be devoted to new social networking site MyGayFace with a two part special where we interview its creator, D.J. & SeenQueen top cheese Brent Nicholls.
- February will signal a look at another scene but not directly clubbing related topic, this time the ancient sets of teachings known as Tantra.
- March will be a double whammy as we have lined up exclusive interviews with Orange Group chief Craig Elder plus prolific club promoter Alex Erfan, dovetailing both reports with the inextricable links that have developed between them both.
Beyond that, well the world is proverbially our oyster and there will be lots more exciting subjects, individuals & issues to come, all in conjunction with our “Reports” section right here on Discomatt.com. So, if you have something you want is to report on, issues that you feel need our Disco Matters attention, then contact us using the form at the foot of our web page or drop us a line at email@example.com and remember what we say, “if it matters to you, then it matters to Disco Matters”. (DISCO MATT)
Well, it hardly seems a year since we were sitting right here and reporting on what turned out to be a very difficult trading year for bars, clubs & promoters, although as 2009 will definitely go down as the year in which the biggest recession in nearly eight years hit the capital with a clang, 2010 in terms of economic turmoil wasn’t that much better, although, for some reason, we all seemed to cope with the ravages reaped by bankers & politicians on our prolific partying. And despite the challenges facing the country during the year, 2010 was actually one of the most prolific we have seen in a long time, much for good reason, some not quite so, although the year marked our busiest yet, reviewing close on 90 events & compiling over 150 other reports, meaning we have much to reflect on. So, sit back as we dispense with further fancy introductions and run down January through December, a far from comprehensive inclusion of every event, rather a reflection on our year, concluding with our own nominees for best clubs 2010.
The dawn of the New Year saw probably the biggest launch of a club we have seen, plus the biggest news to hit our scene, as Spanish superclub Matinee moved to re-align its London operation, although, while this was certainly the talk of the dancefloor on the first day of the new decade, nothing was going to steal the limelight from new club brand As One, which launched to amazing accolade at Fire in Vauxhall. The brainchild of the man behind another child, Lovechild to be exact, As One combined the brands of Beyond, Lo-Profile, Megawoof, Trannyshack & (you guessed it) Lovechild, under one roof, joining forces with the might of The Orange Group & Logan Presents’ team, producing, without question, the most magnificent marriage of minds the scene had seen in a long time. And the party proved a success from the minute the doors were opened, As One going on to be the talk of the town & definitely the place to have been on January 1st. Mind you, in the afterparty that was Onyx, the partying continued and the momentous day in Area marked our first meet with Phil Marriott, with who we were to form a special friendship during the year, although it also marked the demise of promoter Steven Geller, who, following the event, was short of shunted out of office in the second of two shocking shifts in the first month of the new year.
So, that news of Matinee wasn’t going away and as the dust settled on it all, we reported, in our usual style on the events leading up to the top brass decision to hand the London franchise to Logan Schmitz, a move that shocked some, as this was the man at the helm of SuperMartXe in the capital, Matinee’s main competitor, yet politics aside, on the face of it, the club couldn’t have been in better hands. Finding ourselves in the middle of this muddle, lots of diversion of minds was required and what better way than to throw ourselves into our favourite devotion, D.J.’s, fitting in a special night including a dozen of them, between Covent Garden, Soho & Vauxhall, The Box Lo-Profile & Barcode, swerving the big clubs for their protagonists, yet sampling some of the biggest names in the business. Then, with the Matinee news still reeling, our month ended with another newbie like the start, as Italian club Pervert hit town, taking Fire by storm and making an impression that would see it return for a further outing in March, hooking up with afterhours monster Beyond, although one we would miss out on.
February started with promise and gave us the opportunity to focus on Profile in Soho, a venue which had launched on Wardour Street just seven months before, but was establishing a solid reputation as well as a great feeder for Lo-Profile below. Then it was the first of many birthday bashes as afterhours club A:M, celebrated nine years in business, with a prolific party down at Fire, very much re-capturing the passion for this audacious afterhours club, nine years in, although the same weekend would see the first matinee party by the new production team of Logan Presents, this first stint of Mr Schmitz’s labelled, “Under Construction”, hinted to a new life & a new direction for the brand. And, despite probably one of the longest waits in a coatcheck queue we had experienced in the year, Logan & his team managed to succeed where others had failed, in filling host venue the Fridge, although nowhere near as much as SuperMartXe would in The Coronet for its “Samurai” party later that month. Other February highlights included a Valentine double courtesy of DTPM, who got all loved au at Jalouise in Mayfair, while we made it down to Orange for their own “Citric Seduction” event, guest D.J. Paul Heron & then Gonzalo Rivas rocking the raw room to its foundations, although our minds were diverted as we had lost someone very dear to our hearts, but celebrated his life with a close friend, Abbaword not perhaps representing a scene exploit, but an important event nevertheless.
March set off in storming pace with our third birthday celebration of the year, as Gay City Rollers, the roller disco party at The Renaissance Rooms marked its first anniversary, we entering into the spirit with gusto ala Olivia Newton John style but walking away with plenty of scrapes & bruises following a nasty fall. Mind you, in the process we cemented some new friendships, not least with singer Tonnic who was amazing through the whole evening, although as good Alex Erfan’s event was, it was to be the last GCR of the year. The month however saw a new launch and what was at the time billed as a new style Matinee, as Matador launched at Barcode Vauxhall to amazing fanfare, although for us, failed it live up to its billing, rather being just another themed night in a club bar, this reaction causing one of our biggest review controversy’s to date and placing both our future & a close friendship in jeopardy, such had been the vicious reaction to our comments. But we ploughed on with visits to Matinee’s “Circuit” party which had slightly more muted success at The Fridge but still packed them in, while our trip to Later proved a fruitful one, showing that this longstanding affair was re-gathering momentum & catching the mood for Sunday afternoon clubbing. But our Matador controversy was now never far away, meaning our March ended quietly with our own reflective look at the club & the people that had meant so much to us, the social soiree Industri.
While March had ended on an incredible low, April couldn’t have started any better, with a full focus exposure on the online site GaydarNation, and with Easter landing early, despite the rumblings of Matador continuing, we hit the streets & the clubs taking in Beyond in the second of many review reporting’s in 2010 and then honing in on what would turn out to be yet another hugely successful As One event. With a slightly tweaked line-up which now included the might of Orange, the place was once again packed and the collaboration of so many minds made it yet another well deserved success story as well as placing us back firmly in our driving seat. And that driving eat was to carry us into one of the best afterparty’s of the year, as Steven React Sharp’s Orange laid on a pulsating & prolific “Easter Garden Of Eden” event at Area which surpassed any we had witnessed there before and was to set the standard for the rest, this outing even matching the might of Beyond & its brilliance. Feeling the need to make amends, we spent the next weekend focussing on Barcode, both in Soho & Vauxhall, April also seeing one of the biggest & best Lovechild’s yet, as Alex Erfan & his brave team went all “Wet” on us, installing showers & spectacular shimmering shows in host venue Fire, special Aussie guest D.J. Johan Khoury making more than an impression on us, although Alan K Certainly flew the home flag, we witnessing him for the second time this year, ignite the main room like nothing we had seen before.
May arrived with alarming speed and a month with two Bank Holiday’s would prove to be our busiest, taking in Hustlaball at The Renaissance Rooms, which seemed more to be about Hard On!, although sported an incredibly strong D.J. line up across all four rooms, while Orange pulled another great afterparty out of the bag, this time at Fire, each room and each D.J. playing their part in making this yet another event to remember. However with so much more looming, the first of two big May events hit our shores, as “The Love Weekend” swung into action, but having taken in virtually every instalment, from Onyx through A:M, Lovechild & Beyond as well as riding the crest of the love wave into Later, it was Lovechild & Beyond that got our full review attention, the others combined into one special round-up as eyes were now very much pointing towards the biggie of the year, The London Global Dance Festival (LGDF), but not before taking in Guy Williams’ metrosexual mash-up 31 floor high at Paramount in Central London, as “Reverse Sunrise” lived up to its name, we witnessing the rise of the sun over the London landscape below which simply blew us away, as did the whole event. May also marked a milestone in our lives as the realisation that we needed to curb a certain habit would see us become a virtual tea total, this one of many indications of a strong friendship bond that would prove the single most important one to us in 2010.
Now it was LGDF taking the limelight and having ploughed so much research & effort into this massive undertaking, which included well over 10 international club brands & three times the amount of international & London based D.J.’s/artists, this would be a May Bank Holiday like no other before, the whole LGDF weekend sandwiching SuperMartXe’s (SMX) stunning “Hot Wheels” party at The Coronet, which, for us, was the best SMX yet, we quoting it as having “the best music, the best P.A, the best stage set-up & the best atmosphere and proved to be Logan both at his best & at his pinnacle. But even SMX wouldn’t take away what an amazing weekend we had in the hands of LGDF, the string of seven events delivering in every respect, the real highlight being the main party at Fire when the Muccassassina room really showed the international pedigree that London had attracted, sparkling performances from Leomeo, Phil Romano, Danny Verde & Pagano shining bright. But we covered the incredible party at Onyx with Dikky Vendetta, the amazing A:M event with D.J Luque, and even witnessing the busiest Beyond of 2010 so far, as Steve Pitron, the Chris Bekker & finally Alan K left us breathless in the main room, the whole weekend rounded off in Area by Orange, who, for the third time this year delivered a truly awesome afterparty, Ivan Gomez one of a whole string of highlights of yet another outstanding Orange orotation.
June proved to be quiet in comparison, having racked up an 10 reviews & attended nearly 20 events throughout the previous month, it was the return of Beyond to Colosseum with the new “Back To Back” branding that got our first full attention, yet while the first segment at Beyond’s original home didn’t quite deliver to the expectations of old, seeing the original residents at work & the infamous VIP room in action, one of our most favourite clubbing spots around, was an enjoyable experience. However, it was Beyond at Area that once again delivered in bucket loads, chalking up yet another exceptional exhibition of just why it remained at the top of its game & the best of the bunch. Mind you another club cutting a stride was Lovechild, as it hinted towards summer with its latest outing & our love affair with Fire’s lounge space blossomed, not least in the hands of Brent Nicholls who was the highlight of another superb showing by Alex Erfan’s loveable brand. Then with another birthday celebration looming, Barcode Vauxhall’s 4th to be exact, all eyes turned to the Clapham Street party and it seemed most of London turned out too, the sunny weather transforming Clapham into a gay mecca & seeing the party way over subscribed, queues stretching up the high street deep into the evening. So, we chose Vauxhall to end our June devotions, first landing on the birthday bash to witness a terrific turn by Terry Vietheer, then made it across to Fire for another Alex Erfan invention, this time, LookBetterNaked, the stunningly drop dead gorgeous Bel Ami boys more than making up for the disappointment of Clapham before.
The feverish pitch of May was repeated in July and with the weather holding through the early part of the month, London’s Gay Pride weekend proved to be a corker, Leicester Sq and the Orange Group dance stage a major highlight for us, Beyond then going on to prove itself as a sell-out success and nearly as packed as the LGDF affair. But SuperMartXe was to have its say too, when the Logan presents team tipped the scales with their “Wizard Of Oz” event filling out The Cornet again, while we rounded of our weekend with a fun filled Later “Garden Party” the helter skelter ride & other attractions making for yet another dynamic design twist & variety package that was very much the byword of 2010. Mind you, nothing could have prepared us for the magnificence of Matinee at Ministry of Sound, the promotions team having switched venues & days, from a Saturday to a Sunday with exceptional effect, we being well & truly blown away by this “Open Air” event, styled on an Ibiza terrace party that ticked every single box. July was also to see Logan hit our sweet spot with an invitation to his private party Up, at Dex in Brixton, and whilst the weather had turned the atmosphere hadn’t, Up proving to be every bit as good as Matinee in its own way. Other July highlights included Profile’s 1st birthday and not one, but two Lovechild events, first “Makin Hay” and then “Hot Tropicana”, the latter showing guest D.J. Leomeo at his tribal best, while the former left us spinning from a scintillating set from The Oli. Plus, we managed to fit in our first ever visit to Jodie Harsh’s Circus, making a return to the 31st floor at paramount and loving the metrosexual mix of this magnificent madcap happening.
August saw our focus switch from London, amidst all the controversy surrounding Brighton pride, we heading for the south coast on the first weekend of the month and taking in all the alternative happenings than the Dance Weekend had to offer, full reviews of first Dance Nation at Tru & then Beyond at The Honey Club taking the plaudits. Indeed Dance Nation proved a delightful & refreshing change to clubbing in the capital, although with Lovechild stars Leroy Tayler & Tony English on cue, as well as a sparkling performance from Steve Pitron, it felt like London by the sea for sure, while Beyond, as packed as it was, wasn’t quite a match for the audaciousness of Area. With the summer season having bitten London in the bum, it was the end of August that saw a resurgence in our activity, first giving Onyx full review attention, Pagano’s five hour set spectacular getting our full focus as “Digital” well and truly hit the mark and then came the huge happening that was Hype, Logan Schmitz’s home grown brand that had raised a critical eye or two with its first outing just over a year ago, although this latest attempt did prove much more credible. However, with the tide beginning to turn on Logan’s year, his afterparty concept, M.O.S.T., failed to attract sufficient support, Beyond once again proving its dominance in the Sunday afterhours market, their “Super Size” party being just that and probably their biggest ever.
However, not for the first time this year, we were faced with controversy and were found to be “piggy in the middle” of an emerging feud between club promoters/owners that once again placed in jeopardy a friendship that had meant so much to us, this time another D.J., Danny Verde, although bridges would be mended later in 2010 during our tour of Berlin. So, rather than being seen to take sides, we posted an overview report on the conflicting afterhours brands, although this in itself caused a nuclear style reaction which required tempering, our August ending more abruptly than expected with the third As One event, which starred yet more international guest D.J.’s that had impacted on our lives in 2010, first Eduardo De La Torre & then Javier Medina, both playing out in the Lovechild room to varying effect. Mind you, being a Sunday afternoon, the whole event felt more like Later than A One and while Brent Nicholls once again proved his worth in the Lo-Profile lounge and both Paul Heron & then Alessandro blew the roof off the Lovechild room, our mind was on our Italian Danny and nothing was going to shake our emotions. This meant we missed out on the magnificence of the Orange/Trade collaboration at Colosseum, along with Kris Di Angelis’s, Pooldisco party, both reporting amazing turnouts and even more awesome atmospheres.
September was to see our first international expedition, but not before taking in a plethora of parties, many firsts, as we made it down to Hola at The Shadow Lounge for some Hed Kandi style house heaven from Terry Vietheer & special Aussie guest Alex Taylor, we hit Guy Williams’ Paradise 45 club night at the truly decadent yet delightful Dalston Superstore, savoured a superb back to back set by Nick Tcherniak & Hifi Sean at record launch in “Deep Water” at Barcode Vauxhall, connecting with vocalist Lizzie France, who was to be a lynch pin in our captivating Christmas, while we also got hot under the collar at Suzie Krueger’s sports fetish club “Sweat”. But it was first Matinee’s second “Open Air Summer Party” that attempted to steal our September, neatly followed by Brazilian import, The Week, which pretty much did all the stealing necessary for so much reasons, not least as it reunited Brent Nicholls, Steve Pitron & Mikey D under one roof, giving the event a Crash like feel, but The Week delivered like no other party in Fire had done in a long time, leaving us in no doubt that this would become a force to be reckoned with. But September proved to be all about pool party frolicking, Paris style in this case, as we hit the high roads and hot footed it to the French capital for Michel Mau’s “Supersized Pool Party” event at Aquaboulevard, the whole weekend proving to be a brilliant yet emotional one as we connected with lots of new faces and cemented our friendship with Barca boy Javier Medina.
October began with lots of promise, another new kid on the block making its mark and after one of the biggest build ups in club history it seemed. Billy Richard’s T.T.D. definitely had made an impression on many people’s minds and with it heralding a new dawn in Sunday afternoon clubbing, there was much promise ahead of the launch party. But with tube strikes & unseasonably cold weather plaguing the event a luke warm turnout got the T.T.D. party going, as did our new found Czech crowd posse & a beat-tastic Brent Nicholls, the party eventually turning out to be a superb start for Billy & his team. October was also to behold the most brilliant Beyond of our year, as their “Tokyo” event hit the mark magnificently leaving us breathless in admiration for this awesome afterhours that had hardly put a foot wrong throughout the whole of 2010, save for a few unsavoury elements that had slipped through the tight security net, affecting our euphoric experiences at the hands of this colossal club. With bar brand Profile really capturing the imagination following its 1st birthday bash three months before, we once again gave it the floor, the place also responsible for the special bond we developed with resident D.J Phil Marriot, while Lovechild continued on its creative course, with its “Hot Muscle” event that sported one of our most hilarious dance floor moments of 2010, involving Chris Jepson a giant dildo & a hunky muscled dancer, enough said.
However, October was to prove to be a very special month, not just due to our best Beyond experience of the year, but with a captivating concert at the O2 courtesy of the legend in our lifetime, Jean Michel Jarre, the pinnacle of our moth perhaps being a tour of breataking Berlin, which proved to be a one of the magical moments in our life and this, our yardstick year. With Hustlaball taking centre stage on the Friday, then Salvation on the Saturday, Sunday was all about Berghain and what an experience it was, Nick Tcherniak & Valerie Maxfield making the journey to this towering techno triumph one we will never forget. That said, Hustlaball at Kitkat club was an incredible outing, not least due to superb sets from Mike Kelly, Phil Romano & especially Fabio White, while Salvation was a superb spectacle too and particularly special one, as it gave us the opportunity to rekindle our friendship with Danny Verde, but in Berlin we also finding a city of such diverse yet dynamic beauty and one that we will be returning to for sure. Yet from the highs of Berlin, we hit the lows of London with yet more controversy involving a certain club promoter, our reflective experiences of A:M and then the Halloween special that was “The Vauxhall Chainsaw Massacre” far from finding favour, rather consigning a working friendship to the history books and one that would mar the rest of our year.
So, to November and it kicked off with yet another birthday bash, but this was a biggie, as Trade celebrated 20 glorious years in existence with a return to the venue that had, just two years previously, hosted one of its most prolific party’s since the days of Turnmills. And, despite the stifling heat, the party went off with a bang and the newly formed working partnership between Trade & Logan presents seemed to be a match made in heaven in terms of turnout and popularity of the party. And, unlike the last party two years ago, the main room caught much of our attention, Nick Tcherniak & Steve Thomas sending us strospheric with scintlating sets, while PA Lizzie France made her mark with a prolific performance, Fat Tony & Tonnic rounding off a great party in the lite lounge. DTPM neatly followed with its “Eastbenders” event at the fabulous Cargo in Shoreditch, although it seemed that Later was to steal some of its thunder, while for us, the calamitous cavorting between Steve Thomas & Guy Williams made DT a special splash indeed. But upset & controversy was never far away, so much so that we shelved the rest of the month, only breaking our review silence for Lovechild’s “Anniversary” event, when Javier Medina returned to rock the Mirrorarch (acting as the main room) at Fire, while we also made it to our sixth clubbing birthday of the year, this time Lo-Profile’s which would prove to be the making of this venue, new lighting and new energy propelling it in our estimations as well as those of many others.
And so we came to our own birthday month, December dawning with plenty of optimism, not least with the launch of our new look website as well as the spreading craze that would become “Doing The Disco Matt”. As for our clubbing following, well the month kicked off in style with the launch of new(ish) Spanish brand WE Party in London, taking over at The Coronet where SuperMartXe had left off, but with plenty of rumblings still going on following SMX’s party the previous week which had been plagued with queues, rude security & cold feeder rooms. WE nevertheless, made an impressive impact, the more uplifting style of music going down well, but the enormous neon & LED lighting effects being the real wow, as were prolific performances from Steve Pitron & Carlos Gallardo. Beyond was to play its part in our birthday month, not once, twice, but three times, this amazing afterhours sandwiching our penultimate Lovechild of the month, as Leomeo made a triumphant return to the newly refurbished Fire main room, very much stealing our show, while Bruno Knight & his gorgeous men made their mark at Profile & Lo-Profile, the “Doing The Disco Matt” dance spreading across the place, thanks to a playful Steve Pitron. But this man was to play a significant part in our birthday bash too, having chosen Beyond as the place & the club to celebrate our special day, Mr Pitron gifting us the best present we could have wished for, an invite up into the main room D.J. booth where he demanded our “Doing The Disco Matt” dance moves to the delight of our pals below.
December also marked the moving of Industri from Vauxhall to Soho, we reporting on both the closing & opening events, Hard On! kicking of the festive season with their XXXmas party, while it was Christmas that was to steal the limelight of our year, as we were left amorous with the amazement of Antwerp. It would be fair to say that we did not know what to expect from what turned out to be a tremendous trip, but with company that included Alex Erfan, D.J. Alessandro, Lizzie France & Chrissy Darling, not only was our welcome in Antwerp on Christmas Eve something really special, but the Lovechild “Christmas Ball” at Red & Blue was even more so, as like so many events throughout 2010, we cemented existing friendships and forged new ones, one in particular leaving our heads in the clouds for days to come, these final few days of December giving us the opportunity to reflect on a year that ended as it started, on an incredible high, but with despairing lows in the background, a year of ecstatic emotions, many good but some bad, but Antwerp very much being our cake icing on a yardstick year.
So there we have it, our somewhat personal yet rapturous reflection on a year that had its fill of excitement & drama, winners & losers, successes & failures and ups & downs. There were some truly stand-out events, both home and abroad, there were clubs that went from strength to strength, while others waxed & waned with the continuing calamities of a tumultuous economic & political climate gripping the world. But while 2010 will go down as a pretty awful year for some, it will also go down as a pretty exceptional year for others and whilst we have been faced with plenty of challenges throughout 2010, it has certainly been a yardstick year for us, highlights being As One as a new brand, Orange as an afterparty success, LGDF as an exceptional event, Matinee as the biggest rise & fall, Berlin & Berghain as a special time in our year, but Beyond & Antwerp equally as majestic jewels in our crown. So, all that is left to say is, we wave farewell to 2010 with mixed emotions & welcome in 2011 with renewed enthusiasm & drive. Here’s to a magnificent year of clubbing ahead. (DISCO MATT)
While this is certainly not an attempt to poll opinion, it does reflect our own views on what bars, clubs & events did it for us in 2010. However, if you want to express your own opinions on your favourites, then go vote at http://seenqueen.com/web/2010/yourdisconeedsyou2010/ .
However, here are our winners of the year
Best Club Brand Beyond
Best Club Brand Newcomer As One
Best Intl. Club Newcomer The Week
Best Club Weekly Beyond
Best Club Monthly Lovechild
Best Club Afterparty Orange
Best Club Afterhours Beyond
Best Bar Profile
Best Bar/Club Lo-Profile
Best Individual Event Matinee “Open Air”
Best Collective Event London Global Dance Festival
Best International Club Berghain
Best International Event Lovechild “Christmas Ball” in Antwerp
Best Club Promoter Alex Erfan
Special Commendation Steven React Sharp
Other special mentions in this our bar/club/event round-up of 2010 go to (in no particular order) Craig Elder, Jonny Marsh, Logan Schmitz, Mauricio Ortiz, Lee Freeman, Steve Elliot, Billy Richard, Guy Williams, Jeffrey Davids, Michel Mau, Suzie Kruegar, Paul Beardshaw, Tom Fuller, The Elder Brothers, Dave Cross, Romain Lopez, Andrew Jones, Chrissy Darling, Hrh Minty, Naomi Ruiz, Tonnic, & Lizzie Jane France.
And before you say it, you D.J.’s will get your mention in our music review of the year coming up.