12th April 2003
Keele University
Stoke on trent

What a venue.

I've not been to many venues but this place was amazing. With its numerous corridors it was like a maze. It's been over a year since I last returned to Illusion and compared to Club Metz this venue was phenomenal.

Well we arrived for around early 8, what's good about this place as it's a university that the car park was well close and brightly lit. I could hear the sound system outside in car park and could hear SMD#1 being played, which got me thinking who was on??
Well there was not much of a queue here but handed over my ticket got thoroughly searched and then headed straight for the club.

Entering the main arena was amazing this room was called the ballroom and it was exactly that, it was huge. In the middle of the dance floor was a raised platform for the more ravers to dance on. The sound system in here was loud and I mean loud, with giant speaker stacks situated on either side of the stage. The DJ's were at the back of the main stage. With large projection screen situated on either side of them displaying the evenings crowd.

Dj's Sy and Brisk were on back to back which I thought was odd as they were playing well early but with other raves on they may have needed to play at this time, which was a shame as the main arena was half empty. This set was a classic hardcore set playing tunes from 94-96 including fuck my best friend, hectic number one Crowd control, Brisk finished the set with the ruffneck classic Jiiieeehaaa at this point the original detonator Robbie Dee was on the mic.

Up next was DJ's Vinyltrixta and Vinyl junkie, they lowered the tempo playing 92 hardcore classics which got party going playing tunes such as DJ Business, suburban base's Tell me why and closer to all your dreams to name a few.
Most of the beginning of the night I was searching for Shelly's arena, as this place was like a maze with little rooms tucked everywhere, I finally did find the it and bumped into Mistress Mo who had the same problem trying to find this room. Sy was on in here playing some classic house.

In the gallery arena this was like an amusement arcade with play stations, arcades and pool tables located in here. The one thing that annoyed me was the lack of DJ times as I didn't know who was playing when. The Dj playing in here was playing some stompy tunes playing a bouncy techno set with tunes like Scott brown's classic Now is the Time pitched up by 8% along with one of my favourite tunes, Charly Lownoise and Mental Theo's Hardcore Feelings, who ever was playing this set respect due !!!

Back to the Shelly's room and Mistress Mo was on with no pilgrim as she played a half hour set, with the Rebel MC classic Tribal Base along with some housey tunes like Rozalla's Everybody's Free, Xpansions, Take Me Away and Passion. This room reminded me of a what it would have been to be in a warehouse acid party being really hot and the DJ in a booth / cage. MC Energy was mcin alongside Connie and Man Parris during Mo's set. Up next was Pilgrim, he played what I would say one of the best sets of the evening playing the more harder sides of the acid house scene. The stuff of the infamous Topbuzz fantazia New Years Eve 91/92 set such as Mentasm, Quadraphonia to name a few but this set was amazing, it was a shame it was only 30mins.

Back in the main room and tango was finishing up, up next was Area 51's DJ Clarkee alongside MC Ribbz. The stuff that Clarkee was playing was strictly for the headstrong playing oldskool gabba / hardcore techno what ever you wanna call it, iit was hard. During this set there was the presence of some crazy stilt walkers, we had the predator and a robot, which were really cool.

Well its P.A. time having missed N-Joi back in September last year at Flashback dam you Mistress Mo, I was looking forward to this as they were playing some of the classics including the chart success Anthem, they didn't have the original singer who is Saffron of Republica fame (ready to go) but another singer who did a good job as she sang live, but I did spot the cd player nearby ;)

Time for some jungle techno, from the Dj Donovan "bad boy" Smith, he started with a more early hardcore set playing tunes such as DMS' Vengeance, Lennie De Ice's We Are I.E and the remix of Bombscare, as he dropped the jungle techno anthem, Living in Darkness welcomed the arrival of Birmingham's favourite MC Lenni, he carried on playing a little more hardcore but then the jungle arrived including tunes such as Dj Rap's Spiritual Aura, Andy C's Valley of the Shadows and my favourite remix of Champion Sound the Return to Champion Sound.
Well last set of the evening was from the Illusion resident DJ Foxy, playing out with the anthems including rabbit city's panic.

This was a really good night with the array of DJ's and the venue itself it was well worth the money, the next one is at the home of golden, The Void. I would like to see Illusion return back the Keele University, as it is one of the best venues that I've been to.
I cant believe the scale of this student union and the nights that take place here, as I was wandering outside and looked at the billboard of past events and seen that the daddy Carl Cox has appeared at Keele university's union.

The only bad point of the evening was the lack of DJ times but that's my only grumble. Big shouts to XLR-8, Cruze, Mistress Mo, Pilgrim, Lenni, Vinytrixta, Man Parris and MC Energy

Written by Xtra-C Flashbackin' & Rewindin'
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