Sunday, 10 February 2013

Sat 2nd / Sun 3rd Feb 2013, Melt & Jaded

Welcome to the first post in Abbi's Adventures! I like techno; I like writing. Voila.

A slightly late start to the year - after a much needed January break 2013 clubbing kicked off with an epic weekend. A huge group of us were out to celebrate DA's birthday and he & SL's imminent departure to live in Australia; others were out purely to dance about and then there were the crazy folks who just couldn't let us go out without them...even though they had a 6am flight to go snowboarding. 

The evening started by seeing how many of the above people we could squeeze into my little North London flat. Open house from 7pm so of course not one single person arrived until 9:30pm -which was just as well as I was not even home myself until 7:30. My time keeping is decidedly in keeping with the Spanish. Luckily my friends are all just as bad - in fact they make me look good most of the time. 2.5hrs, 16 people and a lot of vodka, wine, beer and pringles later we left to head to Melt. We'd have left sooner the worst of the bunch arrived at midnight. Cheeky bastards.

There were many choices last weekend. Tresor was in London. Blawan was at Fabric. Yet we decided on Melt: a decidedly smaller, more chilled, housey kinda night. I went to Tresor in Berlin in 2002. It was dark, full of hench looking shirtless men, pretty terrifying to be one of the only girls in there when I was only 21 but I loved it. Raving in an old bank vault was novelty enough and the techno was amazing. I love the label and bought early bird tickets but was a bit let down by the line up initially (I had very high expectations) and then when it became clear that the event was being massively publicised and was at Netil House we decided against. Just too many people, probably a lot of tourists (i.e. going for the name and reputation and not necessarily massive techno fans) and also, Netil House can be somewhat of a sweatbox. I know others who went and said Juan Atkins was amazing (when is he not?) but they had problems getting in due to computer malfunctions which was not ideal. I will save my barrage of abuse for Fabric for another time - the lines ups they get are stupendous but I have issues with the place.

At Melt there was no queue, we were in within seconds. A lovely airy room on Curtain Rd with friendly door staff and a 7am finish. Ideal. I've never been to a Melt night before. The line up as follows:

"Quite civilised affairs" DSL had described Sud Electronic nights as to me - which is the label where Lakuti's first EP was released in 2009. Well it was quite delightful: A lovely crowd, great house and techno tunes and enough space to bust some proper moves. The atmosphere was great. When we arrived Lakuti was playing. I spent a fair old while checking in a bag to a cloakroom full of staff who I swear to god must have been REALLY stoned - dithery, slow and unsure of where anything at all went but hilarious if you could take a breath and deal with the lethargic pace. Lakuti's set was good although between the cloakroom queue and 20 minute wait at the bar I didn't dance as much as I wanted to. These things would usually piss me right off but such was the happy party vibe in the place I barely noticed all the waiting about. I had great fun watching DA light up the dance floor with his french pointy finger moves. I will miss his face! DA, SL and a load of others left at 3am to go to Matinee at Fire. I was sad as it's the last time I will be out with them for a couple of years (unless I make it to Australia) but they were in demand and had to divide their time among different groups of people that night. Whilst they all went off to be big gay and fabulous south of the river, Lakuti's set came to an end and we were treated to a new face... well, new to us.

Arnaud Le Texier's set was brilliant. The energy levels stepped up and everyone really was giving it some. TIR, PK and friends found it very hard to leave. But alas they had flights to catch and after a very sober dance about they left to drive to the airport to go snowboarding!!! Any normal sane person would have maybe stayed in, slept etc. But no - TIR is not one such person. He would not take "fuck off and stay in" for an answer and together with PK and others boogied until the last possible second before departure, leaving just 6 of us to dance about. A fair few ladies in our group that evening - I'm not used to so many females in a group when I go out but have met more and more fabulous techno ladies this year. Unholy amounts of eyes on EVD and Riss - the rest of us had fun batting off boys left right and centre from them. I am so glad they came. EVD and me get equally annoyed at all the same stupid things when we go out and had so much fun at Drumcode Halloween laughing at ourselves and elbowing every drunken idiot who got in our way. Always good to have a partner in crime.

Finally it was time for Tama Sumo. Those of us who had never seen her play before got very confused by the decidedly masculine figure that emerged behind the decks. Upon closer inspection we stopped scratching our heads and carried on dancing, safe in the knowledge that there was a girl under the plaid shirt. Tama Sumo's set was alright. Good house music. Great tune selection. I was just in the mood for a lot more techno and whilst the house being played was great, it was not what I was after. And if I am totally honest the mixing was just plain bad in places. DSL pointed out that there was one tiny monitor speaker for her to hear by, fighting against a huge soundsystem but still - I was not overly impressed. Everyone has a bad day I suppose and it was nothing that stopped anyone dancing or from having a whale of a time. However, we did not stay until the end. We lost enthusiasm and Jaded at Cable was calling. 

A quick tube ride across the river and we were at Cable. God bless the members queue jump because at that time of the morning the very last thing I can handle is a queue in the cold. We were in within minutes, but not before the obligatory moody bouncer almost got me in a bad mood. There is always one. Having got past the barriers and waiting to go through the rigmarole of metal detectors and ID scanning, I had an iPad shoved in my face with no explanation. I saw a list of email addresses and asked if this was for me to find mine for the g.list or to add to the mailing list. I'm already on both Cable and Jaded lists so I handed the ipad back and was grunted at to "JUST DO IT" so I added again and carried on. At the cash desk we were all asked to pay full entrance and told that the guy with the iPad had the g.list. There were 4 of us on it and only me allowed to go back out and ask him. He took my name, looked for it, told me I wasn't on the list and turned to ignore me. Luckily I could see my name clear as day first on the sheet and pointed at it so he begrudgingly scribbled me a concession pass. But he wouldn't write out any for the other 3. They were happy just to have jumped the queue so I let it slide but the principle riled me no end. 

Ooooo look I found a Hilda!  (photo courtesy of
I spent a while queuing for the cloakroom and then we all sat down and rest our legs for a while until the wonderful Gary Beck commenced. Resident Jaded DJ Raymundo Rodriguez kicked off proceedings in his usual kick arse fashion - always managing to capture the right mood and get everyone perfectly ready for the main event. Which this week was Gary Beck. Hilda and Jammy were found in "their usual corner" - Jammy having been at Tresor and Hilda training it in early to breakfast on techno. Lovely to see them as it's been a while! The next 3 hours went a little like this... vodka, dance, join the smokers outside to watch them smoke, vodka, sit down, people watch amusing sights of inebriation, drunkness and hilarity... vodka, dance, dance, dance. I came away a Gary Beck fan.

Gary Beck, (photo courtesy of
I have to admit though, having not been out for ages I personally needed some banging four to the floor dirty filthy driving stomping techno. I didn't get it this weekend - I may have to wait until this:

We left before the end as energy levels were waning and we still had to get to DA/SL's house for crepes. It's a tradition that the french boys make us all crepes and we watch cartoons the morning after raving. We made it there after a quick pop home for a shower. Stellar effort by all. Got there and it was the biggest mission of the weekend to cook 30 crepes. Then eat them. I stuffed my face good and proper with 6 nutella and lime crepes. Nomnomnomnomnom. I don't know what I will do without them when they are in Australia!

I checked facebook on my phone as we left Jaded - TIR was already pictured snowboarding down a mountain. Kudos. 

TIR - Sunday. Photo stolen from FB. haha.

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