Oh man, so this weekend was the Warehouse Project in Manchester. For those not familiar, Warehouse Project take over random iconic spaces in Manchester, convert them into massive clubs, and get some big names down to play. This time round was for the 3 nights of the bank holiday weekend only, and the location was the former air-raid shelter right underneath Piccadilly train station.
Location wise, it was a huge improvement over last year's Boddington's brewery room. It still felt huge, yet intimate, and the acoustics were spot on this time. Right then, here's how the individual nights panned out:
Saturday: Radio Soulwax
Last year at Warehouse Project, whilst an act was playing, the big screens would flash up the name of the act for all to see.
That would have been a nice touch here too. Never having seen any of these acts before, I had no idea when it was 2 Many DJ's playing, or anybody else on the line-up for that matter.
Upon arriving though, it wasn't long (midnight, to be precise) before a live band hit the stage. They (I've since been informed they were 'Boys Noize') were a surprising blast. It was as if they had gone in to a laboratory, and spent years scientifically calculating what the exact most danceable form of music is. Then, upon emerging successfully, hopped on a train straight to Manchester to bang it out for the first time to a baying audience.
Whichever DJs followed them were very enjoyable, although - through no fault of their own - I can't remember much of them to be honest. Then whoever took over around 3 o'clock was left to put in a great crowd pleasing set mixing in inventive mainstream pop choices with traditional club fare. Spot on, really.
Sunday: Ape vs Metropolis
Or, "Pendulum", as I was happy to refer to the night as.
Now, I've passed up three opportunities to see Pendulum in the past, so in the weeks leading up to this I was wired at the prospect of finally attending one of their shows.
First up though, was the discovery of a set list taped to the bar. The previous night's who's-playing-when confusion would not be a problem.
Then it was on to the floor to thoroughly enjoy DJ Yoda, who's work I was entirely unfamiliar with previously, but his willingness to cast his net surprisingly wide genre-wise was appreciated.
Then: Pendulum. And it was a belter of a DJ set. All the expected favourites were there: Blood Sugar, then Slam, then Fasten Your Seatbelt, then Tarantula - spread out across the entirety of their performance. More than anything, it made me really excited by seeing their full live band show headline the Glastonbury dance tent a month from now. That's one of only 2 or 3 full-band shows they are doing before album two's release around Christmas.
The last time I sweated so much at a gig was Glastonbury 2 years ago seeing Mylo in that same tent. This night topped that. Combining these two elements is probably too much for me to even comprehend.
Whoever the DJs and MCs were that followed Pendulum, they were happy to play standard Drum & Bass fare for the remainder of the night. And we were happy to dance along to it until close at 4am. Great night.
Friday: The Essential Selection Party - Now, I didn't attend this, so fellow coursemate and dear friend Rachel has stepped in to guestblog these words about how Friday night's shindig went down...
The Warehouse Project was an exhilarating and totally mind blowing experience. If I could do it every night of the week, I would.
On the Friday night, Pete Tong mixed in some great commercial tracks, which included Gorillaz' Feel Good Inc. and more surprisingly, the song that now defines the weekend: Razorlight's I Can't Stop This Feeling I've Got. We crammed ourselves into the pulsating crowd only a foot or so from the DJ's themselves and danced into the early hours, only stopping for a drink or to hip-check anyone that got in our way.
As the night came to an end, and we raised our hands in the air for the final time, all I could think was that I couldn't wait until the next one.
Cheers Rachel. Here's to the next one, indeed...