Nov
2

DJ Mag Top 100 DJs Party – MOS

About two months ago I voted online for my top five DJs of 2010. I noticed at the time that there was an event booked at Ministry of Sound on 27th October for the results party. The line up was ridiculously good, with Afrojack’s name immediately grabbing my attention after his unforgettable Sunday afternoon performance at Creamfields still one of my fondest memories from the summer. Clearly I had been excited about this night for a while.

In addition to Afrojack, the line up included Deadmau5, Fedde Le Grand and Laidback Luke. There was also to be the official announcement of the winner, presented by Boy George, and then a one hour set by the winner of the competition. For the last five years, the top two places have been filled by Tiesto and Armin Van Buuren. There were no advance tickets to be sold, just the £10 entry to be paid on the door, on a first come first served basis. We had heard that in previous years the queue had started filling up a good couple of hours before the doors opened at 9pm and worryingly over a thousand people were turned away last year after the club reached full capacity. Since Afrojack was playing at 9.30pm, we arrived at 7.15pm.

Turns out we weren’t the only people who’d heard the advice to arrive early! We found ourselves about a block away, in a queue that started off about 4 people wide, and was constantly growing in length. I specifically said ‘started’ at 4 people wide, because over the next hour and a half until the doors opened, people continued to join friends or push their way forward until the entire pavement was filled and even started spilling out into the road. It was impossible to tell if there were 1000 or 2000 people in front of us, and there was probably the same again behind. It was madness.

As the doors opened at 9pm, there was the inevitable pushing and squirming of the entire queue, who were all suddenly no longer content to drink their cider and chat to friends, but who now needed to be inside the club, immediately. I could have handled it a bit better if I wasn’t directly in front of the three most retarded and annoying guys I have ever had the displeasure of standing within a 2m radius of. You’ll just have to take my word for it, I would have rather been listening to a fork scratching a plate consistently for two hours.

However time did pass, the queue did move and by about 9.40pm I could see the door to the club and just start to hear the faint tremblings of the beginning of Afrojack’s set and for the first time since joining the queue, I was smiling. Once inside, the whole mood of my evening changed, I could barely contain myself from throwing some shapes in the line to pay for entry, it was Afrojack time.

Once inside the club, rather predicatbaly, it was packed. I mean really really packed. Almost impossible to move around the club, even harder to get anywhere near a bar or god forbid if you needed the toilet…then you were in real trouble. However this is the last point in the night I would have a single negative comment to make, becuase things just started to get better and better, fast.

There was terrible phone reception and I needed to meet up with the rest of my friends, by some good fortune they were in the first spot on the dance floor I checked, and as an added bonus they had been into the VIP to stock up on free drinks. After two and a half hours of fairly unpleasant queuing, it had taken less than a minute to get myself a spot right at the front of the dancefloor, beer in hand, surrounded by some great friends, and that’s before I even mention the music.

I could not have had any higher expectations from this set. It wasn’t really fair to expect the man to be able to recreate anything even similar to Creamfields…and yet for some reason it was just as good. His playful, energetic and exciting sound is unmistakable. There is never a dull moment, and his tune selection included all of his massive tunes from the summer and one or two new treats that had the dancefloor literally jumping up and down. I couldn’t have been happier. His facial expressions and enthusiasm behind the decks is contagious. The one question now on my mind was would he end the set with the incredibly cheesy, but nevertheless awesome,  Jason Derulo remix that he finished with at Creamfields. It almost seemed like too much to ask for, but if he did, it was going to be magical. as 11.30pm approached, it was time for one last tune. It may have been exaggerated by the endless stream of double vodka red bulls we had be downing but there are no words for the next few minutes, only a video:

After the set, it was definitely time to get some fresh air, as the dancefloor had become unbelievably hot and sweaty. Whilst we were outside, we were informed that we had somehow missed the announcement of the winner, which was odd because it was scheduled to be in about 15 minutes…however the full top 100 list had been leaked once again this year and we had already been aware of the results for a few days. Armin Van Buuren had taken the crown for the second year running and was about to take to the decks in the main room. If you want to see the full list of results, it is at http://www.trackitdown.net/news/show/104039.html

I rarely see much trance when I’m out. I have always had a soft spot for the genre, and one of my favourite compilation albums to date is in fact Dave Pearce – Trance Anthems. I’d forgotten how awesome the long euphoric breaks are, and how powerful the drop of each tune is. It may not be sophisticated, it may attract a less desirable crowd, but I couldn’t help but be engulfed by the whole thing:

After half an hour or so I got a text from one of my friends saying that Fedde Le Grand was dominating the decks back in the room where Afrojack had played. I found him in exactly the same spot as earlier, except there was a bit more room to rave, and in fact the whole club seemed more comfortable to move around whilst still being full. Fedde Le Grand is a lot like ordering a hamburger in a restaurant. It’s not that adventurous and it’s definitely something you’ve had before. It won’t be like ordering the caviar or the duck liver pâté in that it isn’t a cultural or complicated option. It’s not an acquired taste either. But if you get a hamburger right it can be totally satisfying, familiar and definitely something you’ll be wanting again at some point. That’s all I really have to say about that!

After one last break for fresh air we attempted to catch a bit of Deadmau5 who was playing straight after Armin Van Buuren. It turned out the reason for the other room appearing to have emptied a little was because the whole club was now crammed into the main room. We stood near the back to catch a few minutes of the familiar mau5 sounds, but it was getting late, and the thought of trying to force my way through the dancefloor didn’t sit too well in my mind. I have seen and loved the mau5 before and I have tickets to see him play in London in December so I was happy to call it a night and stumble towards the exit in search of a cab.

It is difficult to fully explain the difference between my mentality at the beginning of the night and the end. I was standing in the initial queue, sadly accepting I might have to write my first negative review and indeed the first failure of the Around the World In 30 Raves adventures. I left trying to work out if there had been more than one or two nights all year that had been better than this. I wondered how restrained I would be in not terrorising any of my friends who had decided to bail and take the night off. But most of all I wondered if the McDonalds opposite our flat would still be open…

See you on the next dancefloor.

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