September Event Guide
Words by Matthew Scott
September is when the students return, and therefore when the summer lull stops and the big bookings return. Here’s our pick of the five biggest events next month…
All hail Exit. Not content with booking Youngsta, Distance, and the True Tiger crew in early 2015, they are now taking things up a notch, if that’s possible, with one of the best bookings our city has seen for a long time. Step forward Wen, grime master extraordinaire and author of countless crossbreed bangers like ‘Late Night’ and the inimitable ‘Signals’, which recently caused a small stampede in bass music fraternities when it was repressed on a gorgeous purple vinyl. Make no mistake, Exit is mint, and if you like garage, dubstep, techno, grime, and even random edits of Phil Collins tunes (OK, that last one is made up, but we wouldn’t put it past the Six Sunsets lads…), you should probably attend this. The aforementioned Six Sunsets, who are not actually as shite as they would have you believe, will be supporting with a similarly eclectic blend of styles and genres (and dubplates), and also on the bill are residents Happy Slappaz and Surreal, talented DJs and producers in their own rights. By the way, you ever tried playing Wen and Parris’ ‘Thought’ at around one and a half times the normal speed? Try it. It sounds mental.
Euphobia. A combination of the words euphoria, indicating a heightened and often inexplicable feeling of happiness, and phobia, indicating a heightened and often inexplicable feeling of fear. Isn’t that uncanny? Amongst all of the massive bookings and £85 pound early bird tickets and constant proclamations of ‘THIS WILL SELL OUT’, we’re pleased to also include a nice new drum and bass night in our pick of September’s events. There are 5 local DJs on show here: Medicinal, Coalescent, Kidsan, Blenko, and provider of our last guest mix Tyler Allinson. Obviously, to have a guest mix in our series requires a lucid amalgamation of skill and selection, so you can probably be assured a wicked set of deep DnB from Tyler, and we can vouch for Medicinal and Coalescent’s talents too having tuned into their live streams a couple of times. As to the other two we aren’t so sure, but we’d also bet they are a couple of equally good local DJs who know their way around a set of decks. Tickets for this are only £5 on the door, so if you need a fix of drum and bass amongst all the house and techno that now saturates (and that’s not meant in a bad way) our city, get down and give this a look.
The most Shazamed track of a couple of years ago, Patrick Topping’s ‘Forget’, was but the first of many steps that have teleported the Geordie house producer into the worldwide limelight. After being taken under Jamie Jones’ wing, he’s released a few very well received singles on his Hot Creations label and now, we hope, there might be an LP in the pipeline too. But after jetting from Ibiza to Berlin to the moons of Venus and back, it seems he’s never forgotten his roots and in particular his residency at Motion, which returns on the 18th of September for their first show of the year. Some show, as well: not only will Patrick be playing, but he’ll be playing back to back with the indefatigable Eats Everything, one of the few people to ever do two essential mixes, which sort of tells you all you need to know, really. Residents Ben Wood and Richie Steedman will be warming up with some soft grooves, whilst Mista and Salutu Sessions will be providing the tunes in Digital’s labyrinthine other rooms. Yeah, it’s £18, but that’s the going rate nowadays, and if you’re a fan of Mr. Topping and Mr. Everything then it’s probably well worth the beans. And obviously he’s not played out on the moons of Venus. Venus doesn’t have any moons, silly.
However, if you’re not a fan of Mr. Topping and Mr. Everything, and prefer the more breakbeat, bass steeped, anarchic vibe of dubstep and garage, then you’re in for a treat as well. Pirate Material, who have earned our eternal respect for their forward thinking and innovative bookings over the last year, welcome two of the best to the hallowed halls of WHQ on the very same night. First up is Swindle, that jazzy dubstep producer who – after starting out on Butterz – made the transition to being one of the roster on the infinitely revered and respected Deep Medi imprint in around 2012. His slew of singles – including the irresistible ‘Forest Funk’ – let up to a remarkably good debut album entitled ‘Long Live The Jazz’ in 2013. His sound combines jazz and bass in a way, I’d argue, that is unmatched in the world of dubstep, with the possible exception of Silkie and Quest. Joining him are Sunship: who have earned themselves roughly a booking a year at Pirate Material due to their boisterous and bouncing garage sets. It’s impossible to get bored of their boundless back catalogue of classics like ‘City Life’, and it’s fair to say they completely vibe off each other and the crowd whenever they play. Garage, dubstep, house, techno: the choice is yours, but both of these nights are gonna be wicked.
Lastly, after a summer off sitting in a room with a Sharpie and a whiteboard deciding who to book, and with the finest house and techno pumping in the background as they were doing so, the Ape-X chaps have finally announced their Autumn programme of events. There’s plenty going on between now and Christmas, but lets begin by drawing attention to their first party of the new term. On the line-up is the don of the new slow jungle techno rave house breakbeat (or whatever you want to call it) Paul Woolford, whose remix of Tessela’s ‘Hackney Parrot’ under his Special Request alias has been known turn dancefloors into something resembling pinball machines when you get a multiball and things start going crazy and banging into walls and what not; and also Tom Trago, the Dutch producer who – since DJing in coffee shops around Amsterdam at 15 (that must have been…interesting) – has released three albums, the latest of which ‘The Light Fantastic’ got critical acclaim across the board. Completing the line-up are new residents Jammhot – a name which makes me think of deliciously microwaved jam doughnuts – and I trust their set will be similarly warm, gooey, and sweet. Upstairs some of the local talent will be rinsing the alternative vibes too. Always a great night Ape-X, and you can be guaranteed that after close to a decade running the night the lads behind it properly know what they’re doing. Early birds are £10 squids, and standard release is £15.