Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Manchester Reviews!!

For a few months now we've been posting up some events around and about Manchester. If you missed them here's Jack Needham's reviews of some great nights out!

Jack's going to be sending us reports of gigs around Manchester, Sheffield and the North West - so watch this space if you want a fun filled summer!

Micron: Kiki B:Pitch Control

Manchester’s long running techno institution ‘Micron’ graced Joshua Brooks once again to play host to B:Pitch control’s ‘Kiki”. Based in the more than musically talented city of Berlin, he flew over ESPECIALLY to play only for Micron, which was to be his first Manchester performance. How elitist.

Walking into the club with a smuggled bottle of vodka strategically concealed in my coat pocket (student life can be hard) I was greeted by the sounds of Micron’s more than capable resident Graeme Ogden. Not only can he be seen spinning every second Friday of the month at Micron, he plays other regular sets around Manchester. Keep an eye out.

After a few hours, Kiki arrived on stage to a flurry of applause and, from one more than intoxicated individual, a cry that sounded more like a dying wolf. Kiki first had his initial forays into making sounds with violins and pianos soon gave way to the mechanical beats of hip-hop, mixed together with more popular sounds whilst playing at school discos before he was even a teenager. What his set at Micron consisted of was a 3 hour performance filled with soulful techno that left the place packed literally until the end.

Unfortunately the night for me seemed to go far too quick. Whether this was because I was having a good time or based on the fact that I can’t recall the last hour or so after my pocket vodka (podka) took effect. I looked like I was having a good time anyway.

If you were there and want to re-live the night, or simply want to hear 3 hours worth of quality music, you can download Kiki’s set here

Bunga Bunga: Julio Bashmore & Melé

Bunga Bunga has just risen from the ‘likes to think it’s northern’ city of Sheffield, busting out on their first event with a huge line up. Named after the bunga bunga sex parties that LAD of the century Silvio Berlusconi so thoroughly enjoys, they bring one of the producers to watch at the moment ‘Julio Bashmore’ and the infuriatingly talented for his age Melé. Having been signed to Claude Von Stroke’s behemoth ‘Dirtybird’ label, he has been greeted with huge acclaim after the release of his breakthrough EP ‘Everybody Needs a Theme Tune’ that saw him propelled into the house scene with lush synths and 808’s. Set for the future release of his ‘Batty Knee Dance’ EP, all eyes are on him in excitement as to what to expect. Not set on simply him, Melé delivers another Sheffield performance. After seeing Melé play a set at April’s Manchester based ‘Banana’ clubnight, safe to say I was as excited as Prince Harry was when he saw Pippa Middleton’s dress at the royal wedding.

Set in the incredibly complicated and frustrating surroundings of the ‘Yellow Arch Studios’ (as used by Pulp and the Arctic Monkeys donnnnn’t you know), it made for a surprisingly fitting venue. Even if it did remind me of the village hall I went to when I used to attend scouts...everyone has a past they’re not proud of.

Julio more than assured the crowd why he is held in such high regard. Delivering a very house heavy set it was clear to see why he has been spoke highly of by the likes Turbo’s megaman Tiga. After half an hours time spent in search for a toilet, only to be directed by a bouncer to “go be’ind a bin, yer don’t need to wipe’, we found Melé. At the age of 19, he has accomplished more in his life than I ever will. This fills me both with envy and bitterness. However, this is more than deservedly so. With a high energy and nostalgic set, he seamlessly went from the Erol Alkan and Boys Noize banger ‘Lemonade’ to the ‘it was gangster when you were 13’ So Solid Crew, he re-affirmed to me how good he actually is. After all, Fact magazine named in in their top ten of who to watch in 2011. And that counts for something.

Afterwards, we made the fateful mistake of deciding that an after party is a good idea. As always, the next morning it was sorely regretted. Cue around 50 or so people in a house causing £2000’s worth of (accidental) damage. It wasn’t my house, so it was fine.

Annie Mac: TEED & Club Pony DJ’s.

Two of Sheffield’s greatest long running club nights join forces to bring a line up of huge calibre. If you didn’t know, Club Pony are around 4 years old, who’s roster includes Erol Alkan, Brodinski, Fake Blood, Boy 8-Bit, Surkin and Justin Robertson to name but a few, and the Tuesday Club specialise in dubstep and dnb every...well, Tuesday. Having initially being at the Sheffield’s student union only to then get upped to the Octagon, more than 3 times in size, it still made for a big night despite the lack of intimacy.

Starting the night throwing a surprise party for my friend which was surprisingly civilised (it was a cheese and wine party after all. We are aristocrats) we then decided we should equal this out by hiding in the toilet for the short train ride as if we were pre-puberty 13 year olds. The great thing about Sheffield is that it hosts one off events like this that are great for the city. It’s this and the city wide free music festival ‘Tramlines’ every summer which make it one of the U.K’s greatest places for music.

When we arrived Annie Mac was just warming. However, she seemed as though she was doing this for the duration of her set. I’ve never really been a fan of Annie Mac. I’ve always thought of her as a glorified Fearne Cotton, saying things like “hey i’ve heard of this great duo from France. They’re called Daft Punk I think you’ll really like them”. My first time seeing her though did not do much to change my mind. At some points it literally sounded like she was simply pressing “next” on her ipod. At some points I thought something that I didn’t want to think at 21 years’s far too loud”. I shudder every time I think back to that moment. Club Pony’s ‘Louis Louis’ more than satisfied in the second room mind.

Next up, Radio 1’s one to watch for 2011 ‘Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs’ came onstage with his incredible live performance. Setting himself up on a desk that inlucedd more equipment than I had seen before and 2 female dancers dressed in a leotard and dinosaur tails, I was impressed from the start. Having seen him before at The Roadhouse in Manchester where I was only a metre away and afterwards, asked him where he got his dinosaur costume from to a 2000 plus capacity showed how far he had come in the past 6 months. Once again, hugely impressed. I still want his dinosaur costume mind, he never told me.

Banana: Ado & Die Swans

Saturday the 6th of May once again saw Banana return to it’s home of Joshua Brooks to bring wax:on’s Ado to the floor. Firing up support from the likes of Fake Blood, Annie Mac, Boys Noize and other electro behemoths, this was always set to be big from the beginning.

As Manchester’s only independent electro night, it has come on far from the start just over a year ago.
First, it was the debut of the newly signed Die Swans, who has bee recently acquired by Banana records, the newly formed label from the Banana night. This was a hugely house driven set, playing in it a few of his own tracks, including his remix of Style of Eye’s ‘sexx’ which has been received with great praise from the likes of John Roman and Hervé. From the reaction of the crowd, he’s definitely set for big things.

Ado then came down to a crammed Joshua Brooks, playing an array of hard electro that couldn’t literally rip your face off, but in the world of metaphors, he ripped people’s faces off. 

Like Banana's Facebook Fanpage to get the news about forthcoming events.

Thanks to Jack who really made us chuckle with his stories - More coming soon!

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