Saturday, 1 January 2011

Metalheadz Xmas Special, Cable 18/12/2010 Review

Metalheadz Xmas special was solid gold proof that after nearly seventeen years of success, it certainly hasn’t lost its touch.  With a history of releases from some of the biggest names in d&b, the events are impossible to disappoint, and undoubtedly not for the faint hearted.  I headed down to the Xmas party to see what all the hype was about…

After receiving forewarning that only Mistabishi had cancelled due to the heavy snow conditions, I hit the club about midnight.  Upon entering the magnificent cable club, DJ Storm was engaged in a mixing battle with Randall.  Having been one of the original founders of the Metalheadz label with Goldie and DJ’ing sister Kemistry back in the early nineties, I found Storm to be inspirational and perfectly adept at mixing, throwing blasts of bass into the dance floor.  Both the first lady of d&b and Randall had the crowd pulling vicious bassfaces to deep and dark rumbling beats.

By the time J Majik took to the decks, the crowd was warmed up pretty nicely and the room was so packed that navigating the smoking area was proving difficult.  I managed to find a new raving home on a platform under some speakers that had the bass of Fresh’s ‘Heavyweight’ driving through the core of my spine.  In the booth, Goldie assumed the roll of general and was rewinding every tune he deemed to be a banger, entertaining everyone who was in range of his dazzling grin.  Having been in the business for as long as him, his ability to manipulate the dance floor into insanity wasn’t surprising.  Sergeant D-Bridge next acquired the decks, pulling out grimy tunes all over the front line, such as Dillinja’s classic ‘Hard Noise’ and Loadstar’s ‘Link to the Past’.  

Goldie stepped up in the second half of a back-to-back set, launching grenades of bass into the dance floor.  Veteran ravers were loving the gory basslines, going nuts for more.  Shadows of Dillinja’s Test Recordings were scattered throughout.  But it was when Andy C appeared behind the booth that the atmosphere was at its peak.  Upon succeeding rewind-King Goldie, he whipped out new Ram release, Wikinson’s ‘Moonwalker VIP.’  D&b soldiers were almost trying to leap into the booth in excitement as Andy C double dropped his way into the early hours of the morning.  His set was incredibly versatile as there was something in there for every d&b lover, and the club nearly exploded.  Armed with stingers including Hazard’s ‘Machete,’ Chase & Status’ new ‘Messy Bus’ and Foul Play’s remix of ‘Renegade Snares,’ he flaunted his impeccable skills and destroyed the club like I haven’t seen for a while. 
Personally, the absolute pinnacle of the night was when he blasted us with Callide’s ‘Supreme,’ which got me unable to control my twisted bassface and the whole room demanding a rewind until Goldie broke free of D-Bridge’s restraints and backspun the track to the start.  After ninety minutes of pure perfection and one of the best atmospheres I’ve seen in a club, Sigma took over and maintained the same high quality that had been evident throughout the night.  ‘The Jungle’ featured early on and had everyone stomping all over the room.  Hearing Spor’s renowned ‘Aztec’ was a nice remedy for everyone who had chosen Metalheadz over Renegade Hardware – obviously a difficult choice for many ravers.  The room remained busy and although some people were getting tired, the club was still ablaze with energy.  Sigma and Fresh’s ‘Cylon’ brought the tempo up again and had the crowd going crazy at the front.  After an hour, Break brought the night to a calmer close, filtering the club out.

Just writing this up has reminded me of the magic of that night.  A nice varied crowd who were obviously seriously in love with d&b, combined with some incredibly sick music and talent made the night one of the best in 2010.  Even if you’re not completely in love with the label, the nights are essential as they are so spectacular and like no other.  I certainly cannot wait to return to Cable for the next one, and more specifically, to the bass box that is now my new home


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