Raindance
21.02.04
Se One

Well this was my first Raindance rave and also my first time in the capital for an all nighter since April 2000. Raindance's music policy is slightly different compared to that of other oldskool nights that I've been to and having not been to Se One before I really didn't know what to expect.

Arriving in London after 9 making a detour through the city we got to London Bridge and found Weston Street quite easily. Went to a pub just a few minutes away to meet a few others before heading down.

Headed to the venue, which is under London bridge station, under an archway was quite mad the queue was massive like I've never seen before people queuing in both directions. Security were moving the queue quite quickly getting the ravers in at a decent pace, it didn't take too long to get in and after a brief search were was inside the venue.

Wow that's what I can say about the venue, it huge and unique like I've never seen before with so many arches and rooms. The place was laid out quite well as it was easy to locate the various arenas and with set times posted around the venue I was sure not to miss any DJ's that I wanted to see tonight.

Well soon as you enter the venue you land straight in the jungle room, which was quite busy, I dunno who was on when we entered but they were playing anthems such as Ready or not 2004 remix, Rah remix, Nosher remix also Muderartion too, but it got the place lively.

DJ Ash-A-Tak off Blackmarket records was on after he was laying down the basslines.
Playing an upfront set with a few anthems along with some dub plates. This is the good thing that I like about London is that big DJ's will play more dubplates and experiment compared to other raves that I've been to.

Half way through the set I decided to wander around the venue and check it out. Well there were plenty of rooms dotted around the place there was quite a massive merchandise stall selling some classic tape packs from past events and some vinyl too.

The other rooms were quite busy especially the main arena were they were playing oldskool, the oldskool room was kitted out quite nicely and with the Altern-8 stage show here tonight, it reminded me of Flashback back in September 2001 with the massive fluorescent cut outs of 'A' and '8'

I didn't catch which DJ was playing in the oldskool room but Charlie B and MC Ice were mcin' in here I didn't really rate them too much and decided to leave.
Back to the jungle room and Ash-A-Tak was finishing up GQ arrived to finish up the remainder his set.

It was good to finally see GQ in his hometown as where I've gone to see him booked he's not turned up. Well up next was DJ Perry K, he was playing a classic jungle set to get the crowd rocking it was great to hear GQ MC over 94-97 jungle. Perry K started off with Worries in da dance moved on to Super Sharp Shooter, Fire, Junglist. GQ just complimented this style and keeping the crowd hyped, during the set they had some break-dancers on stage, which was quite entertaining too. Perry K finished the set with terrorist that GQ dedicated to the late great Stevie Hyper D.

After Perry K it was PA time in the oldskool room as it was the turn of the midlands oldskool legends Altern-8.

The main arena arch was buzzing with excitement when Altern-8 appeared on stage, dressed in Altern-8 fashion with boilers suite and dust masks it was time for the visual assault. MK One was hyping up the crowd along with the break-dancers that Altern-8 bring with the each time. They started of with Move my body, moved on to Frequency, Hypnotic St-8, E-Vapor-8, Armageddon and Man Parris joined in the party to finish off the set with Activ-8.

It was quite mad as the crowd were dressed up for the live show as well it was good to see people making the effort for the oldskool legends.

After Altern-8 it was Koollive's very own and midlands bad boy Glenn Aston, he played a 92 techno set. He started of with DMS' s Dominator, Vamp, Energy Flash throwing in Spirit too. During his set the Narni Shakers were on the main stage shaking their thing oooh sexy. Even though Glenn's not a massive name in London he did rock the main arena proper, playing a lot of underground tunes to keep the crowd guessing, which I hope that gets him booked more and more.

I quickly popped out of his set and dropped by the hardcore arena as another of my favourite DJ's was on DJ Vibes. He was playing a '96 classics set from what I could hear playing a few of my favourite tunes including Rave theme and his remix of Madonna's Like a prayer remix on asylum, Rave is a mystery which got the crowd bouncing Storm arrived during this point and he just rocked the party.

Back to the main arena and Glenn was still rocking, it wouldn't be a 92 set from Glenn Aston without throwing Carl Cox's I want you (forever), he also played Prodigy's Everybody in the place. During the last half of his set they had a mad laser show going off which is quite enjoyable as it was multi coloured, as most promoters tend to use the green lasers which is quite boring.

I would say this was one of my favourite sets of the evening as there was hardly any anthem bashing and Glenn had a wicked tune selection, considering playing after the live show Glenn did a fantastic job. I saw that Ratpack were here so it was time for Glenn to finish up soon he finished his playing Keep the fires burning.

Well it was the turn of the oldskool legends the first DJ and MC team in the scene Lipmaster mark and Everson Allen "The Ratpack". At this point the main arch was rammed Ratpack started off with Closer to your dreams, thrown in Promise land/ Sweet harmony and Found a café.
Well I sort of knew what to expect from the Ratpack so I didn't hang around for too long and checked out the hardcore arch.

DJ Sy and MC Storm were rocking the party in here carrying on were they left off from hardcore heaven last weekend. During this set they had funky characters on sticks dancing around the arena that was quite amusing. SY played bouncy set included tunes such as Time to fly, Heartbeat remix, a new Love of my life remix too which went down really well as it got everyone singing along. The hardcore room got hot very quickly but there was a massive fan at the front to try and keep people cool.

At this point we decided to leave, overall it was a fantastic night out. I really enjoyed the venue and would love to come back here again. The Raindance team put an amazing show on, which is what you would expect with a promoter with over 10 years of experience. This was my first Raindance and hopefully not my last, the atmosphere in all arenas was amazing all good vibes and no attitude which is makes the night that extra special, the sound system was loud especially in the jungle and hardcore arches.

The only thing I could fault the evening is the MC policy, considering that they claim that its 90% MC free in the main arena. I did find it annoying having to listen to Charlie B and Ice as it put me off a few sets that I heard were quite good. I would prefer to her someone such as Robbie Dee, Man Parris, Jack Horner etc. MC's that were once part of the original Raindance magic and oldskool vibe.

Other than that I would say it was an excellent night and would look forward to returning to this venue and a future Raindance.

Massive respects to Justin @ Kool, Storm + Sarah, GQ, Glenn Aston, SY, Vibes, Whizzkid, Billy Bunter, Man Parris, Uplift, Will Power, Lipmaster Mark and Everson Allen.

Big Shouts to Shaun and Leanne, Andy Immz, Bertie, Adam and all the Ush.net and Backtotheoldskool.co.uk crew and everyone else whose names I dont' know but faces I recognise.

Written by Xtra-C Flashbackin' & Rewindin'
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