A Guy Called Gerald at The Tube, Brighton Seafront, 12th March 2011
While I’m hotly anticipating the second Fluffy Logic party this Friday 25th March, there’s time to post some pictures of another pretty cool night I went along to recently.
My sister and I had travelled to Brighton to see Iron & Wine live at the Corn Exchange, but just before we went in we saw a poster for a 2 hour live set by A Guy Called Gerald. We both know of this producer through a very early dance music track from the late 80′s – one I picked up on vinyl when I first started collecting records around 1999.
The track is of course his classic Voodoo Ray – an easy going, catchy tune with a typical acid house hook and some lovely Eastern-sounding female vocals. This is overlaid with strange shouty vocal samples that I’d never given much thought to, until I read the Voodoo Ray Wikipedia article. It turns out these are actually the voices of famous British comedy duo Peter Cook and Dudley Moore. Well I never…
So we turned up for the opening night of seafront club The Tube (previously known as the Funky Buddha Lounge – I’m told that the clubs in Brighton change their names on a regular basis) and, as usual for clubs, the first thing I noticed was that it was ridiculously loud. I must be getting older, but I prefer to see it as my taste getting more refined. Anyhow, in went the earplugs, and we got started on the drinks – the first of which was free! We had already emptied a large bottle of Morgan’s Spiced Rum at this point, so we were in a pretty happy mood!
The second thing I noticed was the crowd – quite a few House-’n'-Garage type people, but no bad attitude, so all good. The warm-up DJ was keeping them happy with various bits of old-skool this and old-skool that.
Our man Gerald graced the decks shortly after 1am and started playing what I had very much hoped he would – House music! You could see the mood of the dancefloor changing slowly – those punters who had wandered in off the seafront began to disappear, leaving the true House-heads behind. Of the few people I spoke to, all of them had come specifically to hear A Guy Called Gerald.
One guy we met called Dovydas was from Lithuania but living in Brighton, and a big fan of Gerald. A girl I got chatting to was there because… she was Gerald’s girlfriend! Surely his biggest fan and nice to see her on the dancefloor, not stuck in the DJ booth (as is sometimes the case with the DJ’s entourage…)
Speaking of the DJ booth, I had a peek inside to see what Gerald was working with. He had two (count ‘em) Macbook Pros, both running Reason software. I’ve always thought of Reason as production software, but obviously it gets used for performance too. Presumably he was running each laptop through a separate channel on the mixer, and using them a bit like they were two turntables. It was hard to see how much live tweaking and twiddling he was doing. I certainly didn’t see any physical control surfaces with knobs or faders in there, but he could have been using the mouse – fiddly as it is!
The music itself was brilliant. Gerald took us through about 90 minutes of deep techno and tech-house. Me and the sister danced our socks off and there were quite a few times when I totally lost myself in the music and awesome lightshow (good work Tube!). I’ll have to search through his back catalogue to see if I can find anything that I heard that night. Naturally, at about 3am he dropped a remix of Voodoo Ray, and much cheering ensued!
Then he pulled out the Jungle and Drum ‘n’ Bass… a nice, unexpected treat! Things got really ravey at this point, and I decided to capture some of it on video. The footage I caught (see below) is almost exactly like what I used to imagine a rave would be like, back when I was too young to attend one. I think you get a good sense of the atmosphere
We came back to London the next day feeling rather satisfied with our long weekend. Big thanks to A Guy Called Gerald!
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