Wednesday, 7 September 2016
Blue are the people here that walk around
Seventeen years ago, Britain’s best “Decade of Dance Music” was drawing to a close - but with a bang, not a whimper…
Throughout the Summer of 1999, massive club hits such as Toca Me by Fragma, King In My Castle by Wamdue Project, 9pm Till I Come by ATB, Flat Beat by Mr.Oizo, Moloko’s Sing it Back, and Alice Deejay Better Off Alone, the ubiquitous presence of the “Positiva” and “Multiply” labels in our record shops, and the rise of big names in the DJ re-mix world including Danny Tenaglia, Shanks & Bigfoot, Trouser Enthusiasts, Armand van Helden, Masters at Work and the Sharp Boys made the whole thing seem like one long party - with at one end of the scale the likes of Basement Jaxx and the Chemical Brothers, and at the other, the Vengaboys and Cher.
Even into the Autumn the “Ibiza influence” was rife, and people wanted to carry on that party vibe long after their holiday season was over. So it was in October of ‘99 that two entrepreneurs in London converted the Metropolitan Cold Stores in Smithfield Meat Market into one of the country’s most popular “super-clubs”, Fabric. With three dancefloors, a 2,500 capacity and a string of pioneering DJs, it was voted not just the UK’s, but the World’s best club on three occasions.
Now, sadly, the streets of Clerkenwell are “party-land” no more - with the decision yesterday by Islington Council to revoke Fabric’s licence after a couple of well-publicised drug-related deaths on its premises. How sad that a club these days is held responsible for the chemical constitution of its customers, but I digress…
I have no idea what the playlist was like on Fabric’s opening night, nor did I ever go there (we only arrived in London that same year - and clubbing for us meant G-A-Y in the Astoria, not the “serious-raver-oriented-and-only-slightly-gay” Fabric), but based upon what new dance music hit the charts in October I can hazard a few guesses:
Definitely this! A.T.F.C. Presents OnePhatDeeva - In And Out Of My Life:
Probably a bit of this - Eiffel 65 and Blue (Da Ba Dee):
…and this - Don’t Stop by ATB:
And - in the chill-out room, I am sure we would hear this one - Two Times by Ann Lee:
RIP Fabric. We may not have been among your punters, but we’re still very, very sorry to see you go…