The Waves / Diving In

On 22nd September Louis Knight and The Waves is taking over Red Bar, appointing Lukas Wigflex to head selector. I took the chance to dive deeper into his thoughts behind the night…

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With Nottingham being a student-heavy city, the end of summer and start of term again naturally causes its night time events to unearth from hibernation (more on this later…) One such promoter grabbing this opportunity to welcome students, as well as curious locals, to his brand of fun times is Louis Knight of The Waves.

Following on from a mammoth summer bank holiday party, on 22nd September he’s taking over Red Bar, appointing Lukas Wigflex to head selector. Also an opportunist, I took the chance to learn more about The Waves before it all kicks off, and sat down with Louis to dive deeper into his thoughts behind the night…

 

First thing’s first – why call it ‘The Waves?’

It’s hard to name your own business and make it relevant to all, so I chose the name The Waves because it’s neutral. It represents fluidity and is a flowing motion. Adding the ‘The’ gives it its independence and some of the top clubs and nights such as ‘The Berghain’ and ‘The warehouse project’ have proven it works. It also links to music, referencing sound waves and raves.

Who else is part of the Waves crew?

We got head rep Max P who is my trusty right hand man along side our other promoters Alex Stewart, Joe Coles and Ailsa Mcfarlane, who will be promoting online and door to door, as well as selling tickets to all students for our future events. We also have my very good friends and resident DJs – Jacob Gulliver, Kairo and MLĀNO.

On your event page it says you’re inspired by the nightlife culture in Berlin – why do you have a special connection with that place over other clubbing meccas such as Ibiza, Croatia or even UK cities like London or Leeds?

I left England in 2015 and decided to live in Berlin, using this city as my base for travelling. I was there for 11 months in total and got a real good grasp of the variety and diversity of clubs there, as well as its night life culture. Then when I returned I missed the feeling I got when I entered a club in Berlin, so I decided to replicate it with my own events. I’ve been to Ibiza but I got a totally different impression there. I think you have to reach a level of social status to feel like you can enjoy it, but in Berlin the clubbing community welcomes anyone who is there to have a genuinely good time and not to show off.

Berlin aside, what was that special track or event that made you realise how much you loved dance music and its culture?

If I had to pin point one specific place it would be Sisyphos, Berlin. This place is more of a commune than a club. It opens Friday evening and doesn’t close until midday Monday. It has 2 rooms, The Hammerhalle, which is your heavy 4 x 4 Berliner Techno, and The Winterkarten which is a stained glass windowed church vibe shed which is more tech house and house.

Why, and when, did you start your night?

I started to create it in Dec 16 and had first one Jan 17

Do you come from Nottingham? If not, how did you end up here?

I come from Leicester but moved here when I got back from Berlin.

What other nights in Notts, the UK or even the world do you admire?

In my opinion, The Warehouse Project is the pinnacle of all promoting and events in the UK. However Zutekh, the Portal and The Bunker are all events I admire for their bookings, promotions and collaborations.

 

Wigflex headline flyer

Flyers are a big part of clubbing culture, albeit dying down in the digital age, but yours are pretty cool – who did them for you / what was their inspiration?

One of our main values is to always remain innovative and creative so we channel this through our graphics. But they will vary depending on what type of event we’re doing. I work very closely with the designers to get a clear image of what I’m portraying at the event.

How do you want people to feel at your events?

I want people to feel welcomed, loved, appreciated, valued, jovial, horny, sexy, drunk, funky, dirty, sweaty and just have an all round sense of relaxation and escapism in an environment where you feel comfortable.

Your night in September will be your fifth night – where was your first night?

Our first event was on the 26th Jan 17 at Rough Trade and we welcomed 3 Trent bass legends – LNR, George Burgess and Jaust. We still have good contacts with these and some of them have featured more than once.

Have you moved venues / changed concept since then?

The concept of the waves hasn’t changed however the variety of our events is infinite. We have had intimate parties with 200 people cap, we have had 12 hour bank holiday parties with 2 floors, 15 DJ’s and 400 cap and now where going into start of UNI I thought I would give the students something to experience in their first week of freshers. We are not limited to one venue and one style of event.

Which night has been your favourite?

Every event is my favourite, I savour the last and look forward to the next.

You say you have big plans for the future – can you reveal any of these?

We are going to expanding rapidly going into the next year and our aim is to leave a footprint in Nottingham’s night life history.

 

The Waves is looking to grow its promo team. Anyone wanting to join the party should email Thewavesmusicevents@gmail.com 🙂

 

Join Louis at Red Bar on 22nd September, with Kairo, MLĀNO, Jacob Gulliver and Lukas x

 

 

Nottingham’s Spring Bank Holiday Round Up

Ah, t’is the season of numerous bank holidays. While times like these often call for road trips to parties further afield, if you decide to stay put then Nottingham has its fair share of fun to offer.

Ah, t’is the season of numerous bank holidays and once again, we are due another extended weekend to let loose and dance free. While times like these often call for road trips to parties further afield, if you decide to stay put then Nottingham has its fair share of fun to offer.

Here’s what we’ve spotted so far.

Friday 26th May

Wigflex Rough Trade Sessions 

Rough Trade | 5 – 10pm 

This bank holiday, Wigflex is launching its summer series of after work jams. Taking over Rough Trade’s outside area (and inside dance floor on 26th due to popular demand), it will invite its musical pals to start kick off each weekend in style. First up is Lukas Wigflex alongside DJ Skimask, selecting tunes you may not expect but will most certainly be quality, nonetheless.

Expect different vibes to our usual sweaty basement swarp fests with 90bpm chuggers, African magic, krauty goodness and plenty of hip hop.

Project w/ Rupert Clervaux, Andrew Lyster, Lukas Wigflex

Red Bar | 10pm – 4am 

Red Bar has been getting a hammering in recent times with Wigflex and The Garage hosting events there.  Project is the latest night to set up camp in its centrally located basement on Friday, with Where You @ picking up where it leaves off on the bank holiday Sunday.

We rate this night, bringing low key but super fun vibes wherever it goes. Lukas Wigflex will be heading here once the doors shut at Rough Trade, joining the strong and intriguing line up feat. Rupert Clervaux, Andrew Lyster and Goat. What’s more, there will be visuals to feast your eyes upon and a promise of a hidden lair to explore. Bring it.

Rupert Clervaux may go under the radar for some, but we have been wanting to bring this guy to Notts for a while now. Composer, mixer and producer along with mastering tracks for artists such as Machine Woman & Beatrice Dillon. Specialising in free jazz, improvised, experimental and electronic music.

LOOPS – Kinky Movement / Smokescreen DJ’s / Dec Shutts & Dawson

Another solid option to add to the equation.

Recently launched event, Loops, is taking over Bar Eleven for the third time since its inception and again, it’s set to be an evening filled with local talent. Its lineup ranges from established names such as Kinky Movement and Rob & Max of Smokescreen – both units that have been operating since the 90s –  to, relative ‘new comers’ Cammy, of pop-up party White Rabit notoriety, Dec Shutts and Dawson of Where You @, alongside Flo Saviano & Joe Garman of the renowned Trent Bass society.

Rob & Max are still an ever present on Smokescreens free party scene as well as playing at their regular club nights at The Maze in Nottingham, coupled with playing at Glastonbury, Boomtown and Love4Life to name just a few.

Paradisco 203 // Love Shack

Angel Microbrewery | 11pm-3am 

The fun-filled retro utopia that is Paradisco is turning the Angel into a full-blown LOVE SHACK situation with the help of disco, funk and soul. If you’re wanting to ease yourself in to the bank holiday weekend gently but in incredible style, we’d recommend paying this recently renovated, top-notch venue a visit. Music on offer includes:

2PAC / ANDERSON PAAK. / ANITA WARD / BIGGIE SMALLS / CHIC / DAVID BOWIE / DESTINY’S CHILD / DR DRE / EARTH WIND & FIRE / EVELYN CHAMPAGNE KING / GEORGE BENSON / GWEN MCREA / JAMES BROWN / JACKSON SISTERS / JAMES BROWN / KANYE WEST / KENDRICK LAMAR / KOOL AND THE GANG / LIPPS INC / MARVIN GAYE / MFSB / MICHAEL JACKSON / MADONNA / OUTKAST / PRINCE / SISTER SLEDGE / SNOOP DOGG / TLC / THE B52’S / TALKING HEADS.

And for something a little different…

New Moon Tea Ceremony

August Moon Tea | 7pm-9pm

Why not kick start the spring bank holiday in the cosmic style it deserves with a trip to August Moon Tea on Goose Gate? Offering guided meditation and a formal tea ceremony, it welcomes in the new moon with plenty of soothing sips.

A new moon symbolises new beginnings! We should use the energy of a new moon to achieve your goals or to start a new project. During a new moon, take the time to reflect back on our old goals and set new ones. This magical time is the perfect opportunity to start anew.

That’s why we are getting together to admire the beautiful moon and enjoy a New Moon Tea Ceremony.

Symphonica Ft Mr Switch

Nottingham Contemporary | 8pm – late 

As dance music is enjoying mass popularity, many people are playing around with its conventions to inject some newness into the genre. As a result, there are a few outfits out there reinventing dance floor classics with the help of an orchestra, to dramatic effect.

This event goes one step further, adding a DMC champion to the mix. Expect the unexpected.

Blending expert turntablist trickery, dance-floor destroying beats and the small task of remixing an orchestra live, this will be a unique gig-going experience and absolutely not to be missed.

Saturday 27th May

Whoops – we can’t find anything on the grapevine, but we’re sure this can’t be true! Speak up if you’re planning something on Saturday to get us groovin’.

Sunday 28th May

By day…

Dot To Dot Festival

NOTTINGHAM | 11am – late

Sure, it might not be ‘underground’ as such, and there probably won’t be much fist pumping on here, but by golly, we’re not one to miss out on an opportunity to open our ears to local, national and international sounds, all within our fair city.

If you want to break up your bank holiday drum machine antics with some solid pop, indie, grunge, and all things in between, this is a day out not to be missed.

Did we mention, dream duo Shelter Point are playing?

We pride ourselves on bringing thousands of music fans an eclectic mix of innovative, exciting and ground-breaking acts in intimate settings we feel compliment the artists.

By night…

Where You At Presents -Congi // Alpaks //

Red Bar | 10pm – 4am

Let’s be honest – on bank holidays, getting ready for a ‘big one’ on a Sunday, rather than simply ‘cracking on’ during the tail-end of the weekend, is something to be treasured. And Where You @ recognises this need for an unapologetic ‘do on the day of rest, heading back to Red Bar to do so.

Feat. plenty of local names, including the unstoppable duo, Congi, there’ll be toe-taps a’plenty.

Expect to hear plenty of their own productions along with the best in 140 half step. Having released on local imprint Mimm and more recently Chord Marauders, their explosive sets are what drew us to this pair.
Watching them perform a live set when supporting Lone in a 80 capacity venue was a 2016 highlight for us!!

Mimm X Tumble X Rubberdub Rooftop Afterparty

The I Club | 11:30pm – 4am

Because it wouldn’t be a bank holiday in Nottingham without a trip to the Saltwater rooftop. But if you missed out on Mimm’s sold out rooftop ‘do, then a visit to the the I club (or ‘the irish’ to you and me) comes a very close second.

Bringing garage, funky, bassline and halftime – regulars of these crew’s events know to bring their best dancing shoes.

___

Where are you heading this spring bank hol?

We’re not claiming to be an authority – we simply connect the dots.

If you have a party and think we should hear about it, just get in touch.

X

More about Multimodal

Back in January, I heard about a new night / experiment that was coming to Notts and started to anticipate the details. This night was Multimodal.

Since then, we know a lot more about the night such as the venue (One Thoresby Street) the date (This Saturday, 8th April) and what to expect (a 5 hour live A/V performance, with founder Matt Woodham taking care of the visuals while Lukas Wigflex sets the sonic scene) however, there still remains a lot of mystery about Multimodal.

It’s clear that I wasn’t the only one intrigued by this announcement, with tickets selling out well in advance. But maybe due to its newness or simply its unfathomable concept, there is only one person who can explain exactly what Multimodal is all about.

Here, I spoke to Matt about his new project:

It sold out very quickly and this is your first event! Did you think it would be as popular as that?

Not at all! It’s so hard to predict these things. I kept the prices low and the format as simple as possible as I was worried nobody would be interested. I was totally amazed by people’s response, I definitely think it helps having Lukas (Wigflex) involved with the project. His knowledge and esteem definitely got the event out to the right people.

How many more will you be doing?

There will be many more if all goes to plan. This specific performance will hopefully tour around a few venues. As it sold out so fast there’s a possibility I’ll use One Thoresby Street again to allow those who missed out to catch it in this incarnation. It’s also nice bringing people into my studio building as well. In the meantime, I’ll be doing a few more events which push the concept of the events further in somethings quite different. I’m planning to perform an AV experiment on the audience in a participatory installation – gathering data which will inform a visual neuroscience study in the future.

Why do you think it’s struck a chord with so many people?

It’s hard to say really. I’d love to think that people have an interest in the concept behind Multimodal and the theory of the event, although I feel it’s more likely that people are just looking for something a bit different. A unique experience with a bunch of visuals does seem to grab people’s attention quite well. Regardless of the motives I’m just happy for people to turn up and engage with any aspect of the event. My plan with Multimodal is for it to be a bit of a Trojan horse – keeping it accessible to all but with an extra layer of theory.

Since my initial post, the secret is out and many of my questions have been answered, such as where the event will be. Why One Thoresby Street?

That’s a simple one – as my studio is next door to the event space, I know it very well. The size of the Attic is perfect for testing the waters with my first event. An added bonus is that there are large white walls which are great to project onto.

Which space will it be in? The smaller, upstairs studio or the downstairs hall (or is this still kept under wraps?)

It’s in the Attic gallery, there hasn’t been an event here in a good while so it’ll be great to have people dancing up there again!

The performance is 10pm – 2am. What can we expect for the rest of the night?

Doors at 9pm and we’ll slowly ease people into the visuals from 10pm. It can be quite full-on so we just thought we’d start slow. From 9-10pm will be mainly ambient music.

Will you pre-create or design visuals that then react to the sounds, or will they be totally generated on the night?

The visuals are generated live, in response to the music Lukas is playing. I’ve designed a custom controller to adjust specific parameters of the patterns such as spatial frequency, colour, spacing, width, angle, tiling parameters etc. The visuals are automatically kept in sync with the music, it’s just up to me and Lukas to create a performance together on the night!

What level of control will you have over the appearance of the visuals?

Pretty much complete control. I’ve designed the controller in two halves, each controlling one of the two layers. As each layer is generated from an extremely simple pattern with only a few parameters to adjust, it’s the specific interaction between the two layers which causes the intense, shifting geometry.

What kind of sounds can we expect while the performance is on? Will Lukas perform these?

As I mentioned earlier, we’ll start slow, with ambience and soundscapes, slowly building and increasing tempo towards the end of the night. If you’re familiar with Lukas’ sets, expect to hear his more experimental side.

Please explain “the computational processes involved in the summation of sinusoidal grating responses” or simply, tell us more about the research behind this project!

The research behind the project is from an electroencephalogram (EEG) study I conducted for my dissertation at the University of Nottingham. The study was attempting to uncover the mechanisms of ‘mid-level’ vision.

While much is known about both ‘low-level’ vision, early in the cortical visual processing hierarchy, and ‘high-level’ vision in the later semantic processing of vision, the intermediary stage remains a mystery at this point. As we know that single neurons selectively respond to sinusoidal gratings with a specific orientation and spatial frequency, the next step is to understand how the brain processes combined grating patters, or ‘plaids’. Current visual neuroscience is attempting to understand how the neural signals are combined to create the visual experience of perception, although many see the task as challenging due to the large degree of complexity.

Is this research something you are doing yourself or is it part of a wider study?

It’s part of wider research on mid-level vision lead by Prof. Jon Peirce at the University of Nottingham. I’ve been keeping in touch with Jon since graduating and following the progress of the research. The experimental method has evolved in some very interesting ways since I’ve graduated. Future events will explore this new method a bit deeper and I’m hoping to collaborate with Jon to figure out how we might present this.

Tell us more about your background – I know you practice the visual arts but are obviously involved in science too. What role do both of these disciplines play in your educational/professional life?

I graduated in 2014 studying Psychology & Cognitive Neuroscience at The University of Nottingham, specialising in visual neuroscience. Since then I’ve been working freelance on various projects, while continuing my experimental audio-visual practice. I try to combine my interest in arts, science and technology as much as possible with my practice.

I created Multimodal as a platform for the intersection between these disciplines – creating engaging experiences for the public but also continuing my research. I’m currently applying for funding for Multimodal which will enable new research to be conducted. I’ve recently been focusing on Complexity Science which combines many areas of my interest, so future Multimodal events will be exploring specific themes of complexity a bit deeper.

“This simple pattern is combined and processed through the visual pathway with Fourier-like principles to create our complex visual experience contributing to our overall perception.” – could the visuals you create mimic the ‘visuals’ that are produced in our brains when processing sensory information?

Yep exactly.

The visuals aim to represent the computational processing of the simple sinusoidal grating stimuli, while also directly stimulating these early-mid regions. When playing around with the idea using the same patterns as my EEG study within my visual software I was immediately struck by the vast increase in complexity with just a few simple transformations of 2 combined layers. My hope is that this emergent behaviour is clear – while the patterns are incredibly basic, the viewing experience certainly doesn’t feel that way!

You talk about creating a new layer of perceptual experience. Can you even being to describe what this might be, or is it one to leave for the night?

The new layer, which wasn’t present in my EEG study, is the introduction of music. Auditory and visual stimuli interact within the brain, with perception erring to the sense which is most likely to be ‘true’ in a given circumstance.

This ‘Multisensory (or Multimodal) Integration’ gives rise to a number of perceptual illusions. Understanding the mechanisms behind them might allow us to understand why AV experiences often seem to have an element of ‘magic’ to them. Once again, these ideas will be explored in future events!

What was the spark that generated the idea for Multimodal?

While I’ve been working for a few years performing visuals and building installations for events, I’ve not been able to explore ideas or themes related to my research and interest in science and technology. These are ultimately the projects I want to work on, so I had to build a platform for them. I’m just super happy that people seem interested so far! I’d be extremely grateful to continue exploring these ideas while making experiences for people to enjoy and learn from.

 

Multimodal will stage its first performance on Saturday 8th April at One Thoresby Street.

Tickets are sold out – but more nights are sure to come.

Get a sneak peak of what to expect in this video.

Project / Spinning through the year

Project is turning one this Saturday. Joe Kelly reflected on the past 12 months, offering up some tracks to summarise each night because really, nothing says it better than music.

Project is turning one this Saturday, and its calling in Frits Wentink & Jon K to help it celebrate. Learn more about the party here.

In club night terms, turning one is a pretty big deal, especially when it keeps on getting stronger with every ‘do. In order to get to know project better Joe Kelly, one half of Project alongside Kristen Morrow, reflected on the past 12 months, spinning through the year by offering up some tracks to summarise each night because  really, nothing says it better than music.

If you’ve been going to Project from the start, take a trip down memory lane and if not, get to know. Take it away Joe:

Night 1 : Project presents chaos in the CBD:

Chaos In The CBD – Midnight in Peckham

This song came on close to the end of Chaos in the CBD’s set and topped a great first night for us. A warm groovy deep house track which was what got me into these guys, real crowd pleaser!

 

Night 2: A night with O’flynn & Izem:

O’Flynn – Tyrion

Enormous track that I had head the previous summer, again another one that got me listening to O’Flynn. I would say this was probably one of my favourite moments at project. It was the last track O’Flynn played and the remaining heads were all bunched up in front of the decks bouncing in sync, it picked the energy levels in the room back up and rounded off a very fun night!

 

Night 3: Project presents Anthony Naples:

Powder – Afrogran

I have been a big fan of Anthony’s productions for a long time and after seeing him in Porto last summer along with very brief chat we arranged a date for him to come visit Notts! He was awesome and probably the most technical DJ we have had! The most memorable track for me that night was Afrogran by a new producer/DJ called Powder, I was hooked to it and ended up asking Naples for the track that night!.

 

Night 4: A night with Florist + Lukas Wigflex:

H.O.M – two days with Inor

This was wasn’t our busiest night with a lot of other events going on that night but musically it was probably one of our best. We brought in Canadian producer/DJ Florist to share some of the Canadian Riviera rhythms and Nottingham Bosman Lukas Wigflex. I wanted them to do a b2b session for this event even though they usually play very different stuff and it ended up being epic, Lukas certainly brought out Florist’s inner demon. This tack was one that Florist played not long after the B2b had begun.

 

Night 5: DJ Fett Burger + LNS:

Osunlade – Mommas Groove

Our favourite night to date! Fett burger is one of my favourite DJs out there at the minute and it was a genuine pleasure to see him do his ting in Nottingham. Both Fett and LNS slayed the decks and kept people dancing right until the lights were turned on. So many amazing tracks that night but I have a soft spot for Osunlade, and I took time out to have a groove to it.

Night 6: …

Join Project this Saturday at the Irish Centre. Find out more online.

Project turns 1 / Frits Wentink & Jon K

It’s amazing how much can happen in a year. And with life being so busy, this gem of a night has launched and enjoyed a successful 12 month run without me getting to know about it until about a month or so ago, when it invited LSN and DJ Fett Burger to town.

In this year it has hosted Anthony Naples, O’Flynn, iZem and Chaos in the CBD. Now, Project celebrates its first birthday on 1st April, taking place at the Irish Centre, and you’d be a fool to miss it.

While I am the first one to praise Nottingham’s nightlife, beyond the ‘fuck off’ mega techno stompers other parties bring to Notts, I often crave to see more of the smaller guys, the lower-key but high-fun DJs that function in the underground, in this city. Leftback Records does a good job of filling this space, as does/did South Jack Street. Project also fits this bill exactly, bringing ‘vibes a plenty’ to its ‘stream of ‘carefully curated electronic music events’.

Bringing these vibes for its first birthday is Frits Wentink & Jon K, with Youssef Sallam taking care of the warm up duties.

Project does a pretty good job of introducing these guys on its Facebook page. Here, the sound can do the talking:

 

While I’ve only been to one Project, I’d highly recommend making its first birthday your debut visit to the night if it had managed to pass you by for a whole year too. A small, fun and friendly crowd with excellent tunes is guaranteed.

Get your party poppers ready x

Project turns 1 on 1st April, bringing Frits Wentink, Jon K and Youssef Sallam to supply the party tunes. Join the celebrations here.

 

A reflection on Max Cooper / Wigflex @ Brickworks

One week on, after the dust has finally settled from that mind expanding evening, it’s time to reflect upon what actually happened in that warehouse when it was put under the creative control of Mr Max.C

When I, and the rest of the Nottingham clubbing community, heard that Wigflex booked Max Cooper to show us his new Emergence album /AV show/ concept, we got very excited. I can speak on behalf of everyone there when I say that we were not disappointed.

One week on, after the dust has finally settled from that mind expanding evening, it’s time to reflect upon what actually happened in that warehouse when it was put under the creative control of Mr Max.C

He played non-stop for 8 hours

Pretty incredible. I arrived at about 12:30, missing the warm up DJ set and propelling myself right into the biological evolution themed rabbit hole that was Emergence. Judging by the perfection of the set that followed on from the Emergence live show, I’m sure that the warm up mix would have been equally as fitting, setting the mood in true, professional style.

Max Cooper Emergence

I’m still getting my head around the Emergence live show

In the best possible way. The huge LED screen wall behind the DJ booth in Brickworks was perfect for projecting  the carefully planned visuals onto, taking us all on a never-ending journey through science and sound. These sounds, performed live, were as diverse as  the visuals, yet the underlying theme that tied them together was obvious. With images of cell-like forms, space-scapes, the mechanics of a working human body, alien like fetuses and pulsating concrete-jungle cities, when he described it as a story of natural laws and processes, their inherent beauty, and their action to yield the universe – he wasn’t lying! The sonic mood switched from calm and serene to a glitch fuelled ruckus, with the background video reflecting the energy of the tracks played at every moment. Working together in perfect harmony, the ‘break downs’ that occurred were simply euphoric and, listening back to videos recorded of the show, the audience was amazed, watching in silence. After overhearing conversations in the smoking area, I’m sure many epiphanies were had on that night…

The set that followed the show was fantastic

And made it feel like I’d had two different nights in one.

When the Emergence show reached its climax it was clear the the stunned crowd needed a moment or two to gather their thoughts before they dusted off their disco shoes. As those famous piano chords of Orbital – Belfast kicked in, Max gave us the perfect setting to do so. I honestly can’t think of a tune that suited that mood so perfectly, making it a memory that will sit in my mind forever. Smiles and hugs all round.

Raw, rolling stompers and space age beats continued throughout the night, and after every break I took outside, the dance floor seemed to step up a gear every time I re-entered it. Tracks that stood out to me were the classic Dopplewhipper – Gabriel Anada, before it turned into a jungle/breakbeat explosion, kicked off with the equally as iconic Warp records banger,  LFO – LFO

The fabulous Identification of Music Facebook group has also provoked some memories by shedding light on some more tracks from the night, to give an idea of the variation played by Max. After that set, it makes me wish I was in Notts during the Firefly days when he was a resident even more.

With previous bookings such as Paranoid London, Marcel Dettmann, Helena Hauff and even Max Cooper playing for Wigflex previously, this show was a special treat like no other, even standing out against the consistently premium selection of events from Wigflex. Hats off to Lukas and Max.

Before The Bomb dropped

While The Bomb may be laid to rest in clubbing history, it would be great to give it the obituary it deserves. Let’s do this Notts x

If you’re really into repetitive beats – fully enthralled by them – it’s likely that you, like me, have a romantic vision of night clubs. While many who haven’t yet sipped from the techno cup view nightclubs as simply loud rooms with sticky floors, tacky men and sugary shots, we see them (or the good ones anyway) as something quite different. Likened more to heaven than hell, they are places of escapism, places where you feel at home, where your eyes are opened, where friendships are formed and where fun memories are made that last forever.

This Pulse Radio article sums up perfectly what I’m trying to say.

Some of the most interesting and unique individuals I have come across in my three decades of life, I met in nightclubs. More than lecturers or tutors, they were the ones who challenged me to think about how I acted, dressed, talked and treated other people. They came from strange and unknown places, with alternate histories and undefined futures. Many of these people would become my friends, lovers, collaborators, co-workers and even employers.

As the electronic music culture that surrounds these warm, fuzzy memory forming places continues to grow, the rate that these mythical venues close down is nothing short of disastrous. But let’s leave that topic to be explored in its own blog post…

The Bomb is the type of club that I’m talking about – shrouded in legend, mystery and iconic status, yet sadly closing its doors long before the current stream of shut-downs started to take place and my god, I’d do anything to have been able to get sweaty in there. The Bomb needs absolutely no introduction for many seasoned party-goers in Nottingham. But for those who haven’t heard of it, here’s what we know…

 

You’ve probably set foot in its grounds without realising

If you’ve been a student in Notts then you’ve probably been to Coco Tang. Many years ago, the staircase that now takes you through a maze to cocktails and glamour used to be a ‘rabbit warren’, leading to nothing but house, techno and everything in-between. While the culture in Coco Tang might not be to everyone’s liking, the incredible underground venue can still be appreciated. Small, intimate and full of places to loose your mind in – it’s not hard to see why The Bomb enjoyed such legendary status.

It had some incredible lineups

Due to its existence pre web 2.0, it’s difficult to find listings, mixes or videos of what went down at The Bomb, (if anyone has anything, please send them over!) However, with some internet searching I managed to track down this article from Notts drum’n’bass powerhouse, Detonate. The blog post itself is an excellent read, providing a personal account of the promoter’s experience with the club. It is from this that we start to get an idea of the calibre of artists it attracted.

The Saturday’s in there had people like Derek Carter, Andrew Weatherall, Green Velvet, Layo & Bushwacka etc playing. We had to up our game. Musically we were able to go deeper and so did nights like Soul:ution, and book DJ’s like Fabio, Marcus Intalex, 4Hero and Calibre.

Rumour has it that even names such as Richie Hawtin played in The Bomb’s basement, right in his mnml heyday. It’s scenes like this that I dream of…

And has hosted many Nottingham institutions 

As well as making me drool over the past line-ups, Detonate’s post revealed that it once called The Bomb its home. Other Nottingham stalwarts such as Bent (Simon Mills and Neil ‘Nail’ Tolliday – responsible for many standout tracks and mixes on his own right) also cut their teeth in this basement, alongside the legendary rave crew, the DiY collective (when they weren’t grooving in a country field). Vice explained more about DiY in this article, and you can get an audio-feel of the collective’s vibe with this playlist, selected by Digs. In the playlist there are tracks by Nail, as well as Hot Toddy from Crazy P (then Crazy Penis). I imagine they all would have been regulars of DiY and The Bomb, as well as Inland Knights – another local act that rose to fame during this time.

Here’s what Nail has been getting up to recently too…

I’m not really sure why it closed 

For a club with so much going for it, it’s hard to know why it closed down and is now a very different venue indeed. Again, its pre-internet existence means there is little written on the matter, other than this Leftlion interview with Stephanie Cooper, who was hired to help The Bomb rise from the ashes after it started to fall.

I want to know more!

I know that there are many regulars of The Bomb who have stories to tell, and many new Notts arrivals, like myself, who would love to hear them. If you used to go to the club, if you played there or have any involvement with the classic venue then I’d love to hear from you! Any pictures, mixes or tracks from the era are all welcomed too 🙂

While The Bomb may be laid to rest in clubbing history, it would be great to give it the obituary it deserves. Let’s do this Notts x