Old vs new

I started going out at the very beginning of the 90s, to "normal" provincial nightclubs, then london clubs playing rave, hardcore, techno, and some underground raves. Since then I've been playing and attending clubs and festivals where techno, house, electro, jungle etc were played.
I will always love this music.

This week I went to a kind of 50s club where they played old RnB, ska, soul and rock n roll.
Some of the music is great but it's not really my taste. But what was amazing was everyone was friendly, they were talking, people were dancing in couples, not necessarily romantically involved but just dancing together. I made new friends. Everyone was open even though I obviously wasn't from their scene, just from the way I dress.

It made me realise how solitary it can be going to electronic clubs. The music's too loud to talk and everybody dances alone. It's almost impossible to meet new people in these places. It suddenly seems like quite an unhealthy thing, you're in a place with loads of people but there's no real interaction. Even at the peak of the rave days, you might get a hug and "where you from mate?" but not a lot more.

Perhaps I am a bit twisted in my perceptions of things because as a DJ I very very often am in clubs where I don't know anyone and I'm leaving the city or country the next day. So clubs have become extra-solitary places for me. But still.... it was an eye-opener.

I won't be selling my Transmat records but I might learn some basic dance steps...
 

benjybars

village elder.
yeah good post.

i think when i first starting going to clubs/raves when i was 17 or so (around 99/00), i LOVED chatting and meeting new people. But i think this was mainly due to drugs to be honest. My first couple of years of going out and taking pills/mdma all i really cared about was getting as high as possible and talking to people for hours and hours. i mean i would go to practically any rave, didn't really care what the music was. Went to Raindance and Warp at the Drome, Whirly Gig (!) anything really.

Then i stopped going out and taking drugs for a bit.

Then by the time i started going out again to grime/dubstep nights, i was so into the music that i didn't really see it as a social thing so much. It was more a functional thing of, I really fucking like this music, so i'm gonna go and listen to it on a big system..

although i think even if you aren't going around being bare sociable and making loads of new friends, being in a club with loads of people can feel like a really positive social thing. The best times i've had at DMZ for example have had that feeling unity through everyone vibsing off the music. It's a bit like going to a football match really.. you might only go with one mate but then when you're sitting there singing along with 35,000 people it's quality.

but yeah i do miss the times when i first went out. there really is no nicer feeling when you're high than meeting someone and chatting to them for ages and having a little connection and all that good shit. especially if it's a buff girl..

also going to rave and hearing a tune and turning to your mate and saying fuckin hell this tune man and they're like yeah i know. haha.. that's really good aswell.
 

baboon2004

Darned cockwombles.
although i think even if you aren't going around being bare sociable and making loads of new friends, being in a club with loads of people can feel like a really positive social thing. The best times i've had at DMZ for example have had that feeling unity through everyone vibsing off the music. It's a bit like going to a football match really.. you might only go with one mate but then when you're sitting there singing along with 35,000 people it's quality.

Dissolving into the mass for a moment is great - certainly the best reason to go to watch football imo. I've yet to read 'the literature' on this as much as I'd like to, but I'd argue that that feeling is a pretty primordial human need.

I agree that it's difficult to find a club with a really good, open atmosphere, and that can sully the night a little, unless other factors all come together (amazing music and amazing soundsystem for example - one of the joys of PP)...
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
I've had some great times in the kind of clubs Edward describes - quite apart from the atmosphere/vibe at these places, the music can be fucking excellent and, as a mate of mine pointed out, is often a lot more demanding to dance to than most kinds of electronic music, excepting perhaps the most spasticated kind of jungle or whatever.

What's often nice about them is the range of people you find there - there'll be peeps my age, give or take, plus some older couples in their 40s or 50s, and some fresh-faced 18/20-year-olds who are too young to remember Nirvana or Oasis the first time around, let alone '60s garage/psych/r'n'b or whatever. And often it's the young 'uns who've really gone overboard on the vintage clothes, in a good way I mean, really made an effort. And, the loveliness of a darkened room full of pilled-up drugmonkeys notwithstanding, it's refreshing that people generally aren't totally fucked at these events.

Edit: though I should say there seems to be almost an element of victim-of-its-own-success to this vintage/retro clubbing thing that's come into vogue in the past few years...I've pretty much given up on the Bethnal Green Working Men's Club as I've been unable to get in the last three times I've tried to go there. :(
 
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bassnation

the abyss
This week I went to a kind of 50s club where they played old RnB, ska, soul and rock n roll.
Some of the music is great but it's not really my taste. But what was amazing was everyone was friendly, they were talking, people were dancing in couples, not necessarily romantically involved but just dancing together. I made new friends. Everyone was open even though I obviously wasn't from their scene, just from the way I dress.

yeah i agree with the point you make about electronic clubs, but in my experience (and this was quite a few years ago, its very rare that i go to clubs these days, mostly because people would mistake me for someones dad come to pick them up) i used to spend a lot of time chatting to randoms, in the chillout area, the toliets and even on the dancefloor. it doesn't have to be solitary, but then that meditative feel of being lost in music is something else altogether.

and that rockabilly thing totally leaves me cold. its music even my parents generation are bored of. my local has a night every friday playing it blisteringly loud, its a total midrange headfuck if you ask me. and i'm not really into retro scenes. where's the fresh records, or ideas? its almost entirely centred round aping what their grandparents did. dull. young people, eh? whats wrong with a gram of speed, three pills and a night bouncing about to sped up breakbeats for christs sake?
 

Corpsey

bandz ahoy
Benjiebars is right about the being part of a crowd thing.

Speaking as a social retard, I'd have to say that getting wankered on MDMA is about my only hope of meeting new people socially anyway. I can't stand dancing WITH people it makes me cringe to the depths of my bullied-as-an-infant soul. If a girl ever came near me with a rhythmically moving body part, I would be forced to pretend my shoelace was untied so I could duck down between the nearest persons feet, crawl to the bogs and make an escape through the window into the comfortable cold of the car park. In fact this has happened quite a few times.

As long as I don't have to look anybody in the face, I am A.O.K.
 

benjybars

village elder.
Benjiebars is right about the being part of a crowd thing.

Speaking as a social retard, I'd have to say that getting wankered on MDMA is about my only hope of meeting new people socially anyway. I can't stand dancing WITH people it makes me cringe to the depths of my bullied-as-an-infant soul. If a girl ever came near me with a rhythmically moving body part, I would be forced to pretend my shoelace was untied so I could duck down between the nearest persons feet, crawl to the bogs and make an escape through the window into the comfortable cold of the car park. In fact this has happened quite a few times.

As long as I don't have to look anybody in the face, I am A.O.K.


haha. i swear i've seen you buss a very respectable left foot skank corpsey?
 

bassnation

the abyss
let alone '60s garage/psych/r'n'b

thats not my experience of rockabilly djs at all - if only. more like rock around the motherfucking clock. they can all take a hike through that wormhole back to the fifties and see how they like it then, as far as i'm concerned. not that i'm narrow minded or anything.
 

baboon2004

Darned cockwombles.
Benjiebars is right about the being part of a crowd thing.

Speaking as a social retard, I'd have to say that getting wankered on MDMA is about my only hope of meeting new people socially anyway. I can't stand dancing WITH people it makes me cringe to the depths of my bullied-as-an-infant soul. If a girl ever came near me with a rhythmically moving body part, I would be forced to pretend my shoelace was untied so I could duck down between the nearest persons feet, crawl to the bogs and make an escape through the window into the comfortable cold of the car park. In fact this has happened quite a few times.

As long as I don't have to look anybody in the face, I am A.O.K.

Dancing with someone - OK
Dancing opposite a girl who can dance really well - humiliation.
 

bassnation

the abyss
Dancing with someone - OK
Dancing opposite a girl who can dance really well - humiliation.

especially as a lot of women infer a direct connection between how good a man dances to how good he will be in bed. when you think about it there are a lot of parallels - rhythm, ability to throw away inhibitions, confidence.... not sure it works that way for everyone, as lets be honest most of us don't really make love in front of a room full of strangers.
 

baboon2004

Darned cockwombles.
especially as a lot of women infer a direct connection between how good a man dances to how good he will be in bed. when you think about it there are a lot of parallels - rhythm, ability to throw away inhibitions, confidence.... not sure it works that way for everyone, as lets be honest most of us don't really make love in front of a room full of strangers.

yeah, I've been assured by several girls that that correlation doesn't work (for precisely the reason you give), although it is very persuasive.
 
D

droid

Guest
especially as a lot of women infer a direct connection between how good a man dances to how good he will be in bed. when you think about it there are a lot of parallels - rhythm, ability to throw away inhibitions, confidence.... not sure it works that way for everyone, as lets be honest most of us don't really make love in front of a room full of strangers.

Plus, in your case Marc, I assume its hard to get into a club wearing nothing but a black bin bag full of budgerigars on your head and a soiled nappy.
 

polystyle

Well-known member
Thanks for the post Edward.
Always good to hear your perspective, this time on 'in the clubs'.

As an ancient one who went to the clubs in the prime time '80's,
from King Crimson & Humble Pie at Alexandria Roller rink with High School friends to an overloud Tim Hecker at L Poisson Rogue the other week - the social times were great, everybody mixed.
I came out of 'punk' ( inspired by the Patti Smith, Television NYC 'style' as well as the rage and anger of The Pistols and Clash ), got into electronics early around '79,
interested in early hiphop after hearing Bam when Michael Holman brought him down to the Mudd Club first time and we made Death Comet Crew, moved to W Berlin in '83 and did Dominatrix.
So the styles of music were fresh and new, one was either 'with it' or not, or at least one felt that way in a moment.
A day after Malcolm's passed, can remember Buffalo Gals -we did laugh, Bow Wow's cassette,
and he got Dominique from Dominatrix to do vocal for a track.
Those days were definitely about 'the crowd' at The Roxy, Paradise Garage, etc.

I hear you on meeting ppl, in the NYC old days you knew everyone there, be in a Madonna or a JM Basquiat, because many of us 'came up' the same year, a bit like High School 'class'.
Not 'class' in the British sense, mind.
'Class' in the sense that someone a year younger or older could seem like a chasm.
By the '90's tho' Iggy's line "All the pretty girls ... look the same" seemed to come true as well,
shiny new people came through who didn't have much clue except to ape previous styles.
The guy with the ENB symbol tattoo on back of his head because he saw it on Henry Rollins.

The music was and is the main focus, otherwise I don't need to be there.
Sorry to hear about the troubles some have with dancing women and so on,
the '80's clubs here were just bursting with um, things to do - and people to do it with.

Trends come and go, you get older and deal with those issues , the world changed.
Can't give a *uck who thinks geezers shouldn't go out, sometimes there are shows one just has to go out to see and hear.
After Simon's article in the Village Voice turned us onto "Torque", we would be in the clubs listening to Ed Rush, buzzed and bouncing on our soles, often individuals on their own trip.
Almost no way to talk at those gigs !

Have always found shows / gigs not the easiest thing; so many factors involved.
If you are playing, set up , play , break down and go home, often really late.
Those affairs can be easier in a 'group', we can watch vid of the show, playback, burn a couple and critique together.
Doing it all oneself, tired and far from home- yeah I know that a bit but sounds sometimes tough.

By now, after a decade of rereleases, reformations and new recordings,
am finding that there are more gigs then ever, founded a new group after thinking privately
"That's it, no more groups !" for a couple years there -and like i did when arriving in NYC , find there are still a few great artists to work with as musik tries to move forward.

In relation to what you write Edward, by now I find myself setting up more electronic gigs and doing those clubs solitary as you mention.
Haven't done many solo gigs, but am headed that direction on next album.
What do you do when your mates' go cold ?

Another phase, where time and space lands one.
It's all a ride where one can get on or off.
Will know when it becomes 'boring' or too much of the same thing,
then there will be something else to do.
 

4linehaiku

Repetitive
Trying to combine the two is pretty tricky I find. Most festivals I go to I seem get over-excited and spend the whole of Friday night yelling conversations at people right in front of the speakers, and can't even speak on Saturday.

The one positive of stupid licensing laws is that you can dance like a loon until 3am, then chat shit to strangers for hours at an afterparty.

Oh an re: the dance fear, that's why you need pitch black clubs innit.
 

bassnation

the abyss
Plus, in your case Marc, I assume its hard to get into a club wearing nothing but a black bin bag full of budgerigars on your head and a soiled nappy.

have you been stalking me in london again droid? i thought that injunction had done the trick!

you are of course right, unless we are talking Torture Garden, in which case my chosen outfit would be tame in comparision.
 

grizzleb

Well-known member
but yeah i do miss the times when i first went out. there really is no nicer feeling when you're high than meeting someone and chatting to them for ages and having a little connection and all that good shit. especially if it's a buff girl..
Truth.
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
thats not my experience of rockabilly djs at all - if only. more like rock around the motherfucking clock. they can all take a hike through that wormhole back to the fifties and see how they like it then, as far as i'm concerned. not that i'm narrow minded or anything.

Ah. Well there's bound to be a spectrum of quality in these things, like anything. I mean, a 'house' or 'techno' night could mean a mind-blowing experience courtesy of the cream of Berlin/Chicago/Detroit...or it could mean the latest Hed Kandi compilation. :eek:
 

mms

sometimes
i always have fun in clubs sometimes chatting sometimes dancing in the zone, its more lonely if you are djing mind/.
 
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