Sunday, 8 July 2007

True Rave Feature

This is something that was published on the Blog.


So 2006 was the year of the ‘third summer of love’. The mainstream press was flooded with reports of illegal outdoor raves and the NME induced thousands of 16 year olds to turn up to Koko dressed in their parents hi-vis running tops on a Friday night.

Along with the usual references to Trance and its ket-fuelled sibling Psy-Trance there has been considerable coverage of the supposed rebirth of Hardcore. This is of course bollocks. As a single insightful recent feature in a prominent fashion mag pointed out Hardcore has never gone away. Its committed fanbase has filled raves like Moondance and Hardcore Heaven every month since the music’s inception. Slipmatt may have played the Old Blue Last on New Years Eve this year but he’s been bringing in the bells at venues like the Sanctuary for over 15. Despite a dark period in the late nineties, the renaissance, if it is to be accepted that there ever was one, came about at the turn of the Millenium as opposed to midnight on December 31st 2005.

What has passed below the radar is that the influence of this strong but wilfully rigid underground scene has birthed potentially one of the most exciting sub-genres in the ever-evolving flux of UK dancefloor music. Hardcore Breaks would make uncle John Peel throw his copy of Bonkers 14 in the bin if he was still around to hear it.

The first dedicated Hardcore Breaks night, Dance Energy at The Electrowerkz in Islington (, regularly showcases music from a raft of new producers such as Enzyme and Malice, Distortionz and Dekoy that can shift from traditional Old Skool euphoria to dark 4/4 bassline stomp to amen tearouts in seconds. Trust me, it makes Bang Face, which occurs upstairs on the same night, seem staid.

The success of tunes like Bad Habits by Portal and Crazy Club by Austin as well as a thriving community at combined with a support network of labels such as Hardcore Projektz, Mert Wax and a revitalised Kniteforce Records has led to the sound reaching far past the confines of London. Producers like Whizzkick in Germany and Screwball in Poland as well as large Hardcore Breaks raves in Spain and Tenerife have led to the UK big boys waking up and taking notice. Both Raindance and Moondance now regularly book the new breed alongside the Dougal’s and Sy’s at the big London raves.

There is currently some discussion within the scene as to whether the sound should be re-named ‘Nu-Rave’ in an attempt to win back the tag from the revisionists. The name is irrelevant but if you attend Dance Energy you will understand that this is a fearless, innovative sound that rightfully deserves it.

Check out Dekoy’s blog for regularly updated mixes

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