Red Bull Revolutions In Sound (The EDF London Eye) Q&A with ‘Metalheadz’

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Promoters take note, always been searching for that unique spin to give your budding club night that unique twist, well Red Bull Revolutions in Sound have taken it to a whole new level by hiring the iconic ‘London Eye’ and hosting 30 simultaneous club nights, each with their own pod. Admittedly hiring the London Eye might be a stretch for most promoters, however this event is celebrating those innovators who have stepped out against the flow and forcible changed the course of electronic music and clubbing . Over the next few weeks we will be delving a little deeper into the philosophy, passions and motivations of clubbings game changers. So far we’ve had ‘London Warehouse Events‘ and ‘Jah Shaka Sound‘ in the hot seat, next up the pioneering Drum & Bass outfit ‘Metalheadzwho talk pre-internet, throwing tomatoes at British Gas employees, clicky music minds, and the fabled belt driven deck……

Up until the early nineties, London’s Shoreditch district was a industrial suburb unrecognisable from the thriving nightlife centre it is today. That all changed in 1994, when a club showcasing the best in British break beats launched: Metalheadz turned Sundays from a day of rest to a night of rave. Led by drum ’n’ bass figurehead Goldie, whose ‘Timeless’ album was about to drag his scene into global mainstream view……

BBB: What was it that inspired you to enter the unpredictable world of putting on parties, and why do you think ‘Metalheadz’ became such an iconic clubbing brand?

I think mostly off the back of the pure history of the Metalheadz label and it’s early and ongoing success has kind of made it really stand for a lot in dance music culture.

BBB Many nights fail as quickly as they start; what do you believe are the biggest challenges for a night to become and remain successful (changing trends, competitors, an ageing audience etc.)?

I’d say using and exploiting all the extra tools you have that could be beneficial to the events promotion / reach and success, it’s a hard push to attract people to your night these days. It all used to be word of mouth, now it’s much more a case of creative promo strategies being such a big factor in the lead up to ticket sales and the doors actually opening.

BBB If your party hadn’t been successful what do you think you would have done instead? Personally party organizing got me away from a career in insurance underwriting…

Probably stayed in my old job as a Training and development manager at British Gas (feel free to thow rotten tomatoes at me!)

BBB Clubbing & electronic music in general is very much in transition, with MP3’s, streaming, the global credit crunch and EDM all impacting the way we consume music both in a live and personal context. Traditionally clubbing and club music was an underground movement, a liberating escape for many, however it is fast becoming an exploitable global commodity. What would you like to see change in club culture (if anything), and how would you like to see it evolve over the next few decades?

I can’t help being ‘old school’ and I wish at times the ‘sheep’ that follow trends / what other people like or are likely to like really need to search instead of getting so used to a majority of todays music being manafactures in a certain way or pushed by some clicky outlet that also can’t make it’s own mind up as to whats actually good or not in their own minds. I find some marketing activity that I see kind of soul-less, I can’t help but say that. Some of the ways in which music is marketed is all becoming too much of a business model which I’ve seen tried and tested so much in my working life and it’s something I never wanted to see transition into music itself however it has and I think we’re in a place where we’ve just got to embrace elements of it and move with the times. I’d like to see unbiased press and features that only work due to relationships / tie ins / mutual benefit for both parties and start seeing features of stuff I’ve barely heard of that people are actually looking for and seeking out more rather than being fed on a mass scale. Looking at the recent DJ Mag top 100 DJ results kind of left me inspired to write what I’ve just written you could say. It’s definitely all a big change to the days of old but at the core of it all theres some really great music out there across all genres and that alone is what keeps me going.

BBB If you could raise from the dead one piece of clubbing nostalgia, what would it be? For us it would be a late 80’s/early 90’s rave, as it was before our time

Haha that was my time (just starting out) as a bleary eyed and excited 13 year old teenager, not being old enough to even go clubbing at that point but that didn’t stop me shamelessly raving hard in my bedroom with my mates (I even had a strobe light in my bedroom), I then moved on to buying cheap belt drive turntables, and now here I am doing what I do. I owe most of the fun I’ve had in life to this music.

Words by Ant (Metalheadz)

Thanks for your time,

Jon E Cassell (Blah Blah Blah)