Illusion
24th April 2004
Keele University
Stoke on Trent

Are you ready for some bloodclaart jungle techno???

Well its been over a year since I returned to Illusion, tonight's line-up was going to be second to none and what was special about the night was the reunion of one of oldskool's biggest names Top Buzz. This was the return of the voice of Top Buzz Mad P along side Jason Kaye.

Most noticeable too was the change in music policy as Illusion have now introduced a Hardcore arena showcasing some of the big names in the scene, with an up and coming and also a Drum and Bass room too.

So I arrived at Keele University around 8:30, there wasn't a massive queue and after a quick search we were in. The rooms had been given a bit of a shuffle since the last time I went. What was the Shelly's room was now the hardcore arena and the games room was now the Shelly's room and it didn't take too long to find these arenas.

I headed directly for the main arena to find that DJ Mastersafe was on. The production in this room was better than the last event that I attended. There were massive video screens on either side playing videos from past raves including Dreamscape 20 and also some of the classic Fantazia events too, which featured a young Lipmaster Mark and Everson Allen.

At the centre of the arena was a platform for the ravers to dance on, and of course no oldskool rave is complete without the oldskool green laser. As you lot will know the days weather was a nice little heat wave and there were quite a number of people in shorts, a good idea too, as later on in the evening the heat started to take its toll.

Mastersafe was playing an early 90's set to get the party rolling, playing tunes such as Xpansion's-Move Your Body, and finishing the set with Future Sound of London's- Papua New Guinea.

After Mastersafe it was the turn of a midlands favourite, lords of the dark side style, Ratty and Tango. They played a 93 set with MC Connie was on mic duty.
Ratty and Tango played the Basement classic's New Direction and Living in Darkness along with Vibes and Wishdokta's Music is Wonderful and obviously it wouldn't be a Ratty and Tango classic without playing Tales from the Darkside.

Next up was Manchester's favourite Stu Allen along with oldskool legend Man Parris. Stu Allen was playing from the year of 92, which I enjoyed. His selection included tunes such as the Suburban Base classic Tell Me Why featuring Rachel Wallace, throwing in SMD#1 and finishing the set with Rebel MC's Tribal Base.

After Stu Allen was another Shelly's favourite Daz Willot. He started the set with the Shades of Rhythm monster Sounds of Eden, and at this point I thought I'd see who was playing in the hardcore arena.

To get to the hardcore arena you have to go through the games room, what amazed me was the amount of people playing Playstation and pool … don't you people know there's a rave going on!!??

In the Hardcore room was Next Generation's DJ Brisk alongside Whizzkid MC.
This arena was like a sweatbox box, nicely decorated and there was a large stage for the DJ and MC to perform on. Brisk was playing a frantic and hard set as he always does best, with Whizzkid hyping the crowd on the mic.

Back to the main room and it looked like the headliners were running a little late as Daz Willot was still on. Well the headliners did finally arrive and Jason Kaye aka MR Magoo who was sporting a new haircut. When Mad P made his way on the Mic he was greeted with a great roar and he didn't even have to say a word.

Well it's been eight years since these two have worked together and it was worth the wait!!!

Jason started up with a 92 set throwing a few anthems including Bombscare and Rabbiy City's - Beyond Control, and also 2-Xtreme to get Mad P into the flow of things. It was quite cool to see my two favourite MC's brocking out hard at the front to this set Whizzkid and Storm along with Rude. Storm, Whizzkid and Rude were overwhelmed to see their lyrical inspiration just as much as I was.

Mad P was chatting his rhymes and to see the crowd's response in chatting them back to him was shocking, as there was an older presence here tonight. Shows what an influence Mad P can make on a flyer.

Jason ended the set with some early jungle classics such as Return to Champion Sound, Roni Size's Its A Jazz Thing, the '95 rumbler from SS - Black. Jason finally finished the set with Chopper, which went down a storm.

I enjoyed this set every single second and didn't want it to stop, to finally hear the voice of Topbuzz back on the main stage was unbelievable. I just couldn't believe my ears. Well hopefully this is the start of something new. People were dancing through the entire set even with it being disgustingly too hot to dance, people just carried on dancing the night away, as my t-shirt turned into a sponge of sweat.

Well after that set it was PA time from Nebula 2, and I thought I'd check out the last portion of Seduction's set as he was with MC Rude, who I've not heard MC before so this was something different for me.

This was the sound of "Uproar", Seduction and Rude's promotion, Seduction played a hard set featuring some hard tunes including the remix of the oldskool classic Mr Kirk's Nitemare also I think he played Fine Day as well. Rude seemed to accompany Seduction quite well, he kept the party going, especially with the heat in this room it just reminded me of the chapel arena back at the Que club.

After Seduction it was the turn of Sy and Storm, but I didn't hang around too long for this set, the heat was intolerable. What I like about this venue is that as it's a student union the prices were very reasonable for drinks compared to most clubs and also that Keele has a very nice little café to chill out in and grab something to eat.

After a short break I went to the main arena and Nicky Blackmarket was on. Nicky was playing a classic jungle set throwing in mainly anthems that kept the crowd going. He littered his set with jungle classics such as Renegade Snares, Congo Natty's Champion DJ, Dead Dread, Krust's mighty Warhead and finished the set with a dub plate version of Original Nuttah.

Well after Nicky it was the turn of Sy and Storm to play an oldskool set, I was expecting an oldskool '94-5 set but instead Sy played '92 anthems set playing all the old rave classics. He started the set with Bizarre Inc's Playing with knives, he then proceeded by playing A Trip to Trumpton, Sweet Harmony and also the Prodigy classic Everybody's In The Place.

During this set Energy came on the mic to thank the people that attended and to draw the raffle for free tickets to Summer Sensation and tape packs.

All good things have to come to an end, but what a night this was. Clearly the highlight of the evening was to finally see Mad P reunited with Top Buzz. What would have been the icing on the cake for tonight had Jason played Living in Darkness.
The Illusion team have come up trumps, with that line-up it was definitely worth the ticket money. The atmosphere and crowd here tonight were really up for it and there were lots of friendly faces.

Next one is sometime in July so look out for that one.

Massive shouts to Alex Energy and the Illusion team, Storm and Sarah, Whizzkid MC, Rude, Man Parris, SY, MK-1, Connie, Smiley and Nicky BM.

Finally big respects to Jon Xlr-8, Adam, Olly and the Lichfield crew. Lisa, GT and also to everyone else whose names I don't' know but faces I recognise.

Written by Xtra-C Flashbackin' & Rewindin'
© 2000-2007 www.jungletechno.co.uk