Whether you are a tasteful music fan or just someone who loves to dance to the good stuff, London’s Fabric club (who’s founder we interviewed last week) will have undoubtedly surfaced in your conversations before. With the main room holding many a pinnacle career moment for esteemed DJ’s and producers worldwide and the club boasting a formidable reputation for curating unsurpassed lineups week in week out for over a decade now. Not only does the club showcase electronic music’s first-rate talent across its three rooms, but also prides itself with the respected Fabric and FabricLive series, having had contributions from big name artists such as Âme, Ben Klock, Four Tet and Ben UFO to name a few. Now moving into their 15th year, needless to say they have a lot to celebrate and what better way than a mammoth 38 hours of music, which I myself had the pleasure of attending for an agreeable amount of it.
Saturday night kicked off at 11pm but I myself arrived a few hours later, perfectly timed to catch the start of techno aficionado Marcel Dettmann’s five-hour contribution to the weekend’s festivities. Being one of my favorite electronic music artists out there at the moment, I held high expectations for his set. For this instance he commandeered the decks in the cavernous confines of room two, where he played to a visibly responsive crowd of music heads who appeared to be there specifically to check him out. The atmosphere was distinct, with applauses and cheers aplenty, effortless mixing between articulately selected acid and techno tracks demonstrated how well deserved Marcel’s peak hour slot was. He conjured up a particularly memorable frenzy with Alien Rain – Alienated 2B, straight up acid elation. Pfirter’s Crash and a track that sounded very much like his own unreleased remix of Moderat’s Bad Kingdom, made for another two musical highpoints during his set. To no disbelief the German talent exceeded my expectations, losing myself to the sound of Berlin techno made the sweaty inferno of room two entirely bearable. Afterwards we caught the beginnings of the ever-esteemed Ricardo Villalobos, notoriously known for dragging out ludicrously long tracks and playing some of the most out there set’s ever. Ricardo appeared fully on form, obscure dance moves and wax waving in full swing, reinforcing the hard-hitting techno theme that was obvious throughout since arrival. This was my first time seeing him DJ and hearing him throw down a pumping edit of Kenny Hawkes’ Dance For Me at some point during the night definitely left me wanting more of his musical master class.
After a brief rest and a little encouragement from a few drinks we braved an awfully damp London and returned to the Charterhouse institution early afternoon, holding ambitious intentions of staying till it wound up. Straight back down into the depths below and onwards to the main room for some Crew Lovin’, their takeover was from 2pm-7pm featuring sets from Wolf+Lamb, Soul Clap and No Regular Play. Soul Clap surprised with a pretty ruthless set, focusing in on techno and shadier house, obviously saving their funky party vibes for later that night. NRP brought down the tone a notch with their soulful live show, exhibiting their profound ability to infuse emotive instrumentation and skilled electronic jiggling (See their live Boiler Room set for a taste of this). As fittingly stated in their RA biography, they took to room one’s stage as if it was their own, seeing out their set with trumpet spectacular track Rain (All Day), another exceptional moment from the night. After going outside to rest our resonating earholes in the no longer sun drenched outdoor area, we returned to check out the end of Craig Richards set. Regarded as one of the best resident DJ’s in the world along with Terry Francis, the pair have earned upmost respect purely off the back of the Fabric residencies and that respect is well deserved to say the least. Perlon co-founder Zip was up next, his solid offering of flawlessly mixed underground house and techno cuts were shadowy and intriguing, having never really checked him out before his intelligibly composed set was an unexpected treat of the night for sure.
With liveliness levels beginning to waver, a second set from Soul Clap in the much more intimate room three was just what was needed to re-fuel, along with a large rum and coke. The rooms guarded vibe made for a real party feel for the duration, with Charles and Eli delving into all sorts, from Gary Numan’s Cars right through to garage classics like Ramsey and Fen’s Lovebug, their constant grin’s adding to the elated mood. Considering the end was nigh they reeled in a sizeable crowd of still remarkably energetic revelers with the room getting increasingly teeming as Skream’s set drew closer. Oliver Jones has somewhat re-created himself over the last year or so, gathering an entirely different fan base and even converting some of his old ‘dubstep’ followers along the way. Question’s regarding his change in direction have stormed the music blogosphere of late, its related controversy is quite simply boring in my opinion, the fact of the matter is, he is a man of talent and having been picked out to close Fabric’s third room with a disco set on their birthday weekend, this change of stance surely can’t be a bad one. I managed to catch enough of his set to see that it served as testament to a guy who has unequivocally braved the backlash of devoted dubstep fans and emerged stronger than ever. If it’s anything to go by Troxler certainly seemed to be enjoying himself, busting a move in a scantily fit dress just a few strides away from myself.
Approximately fifteen hours of auditory excellence heard with not a dip in quality throughout. Fabric’s extended birthday party was alive and brimming with people that were there for the music, with smiles all round and unrivalled entertainment planned months in advance it was always a recipe for utter success.
Hats off to Fabric for one hell of a party, I just wish I could have lasted for its entirety and I have upmost admiration for anyone that did. Until next year!