After a lot of excitement and plenty of waiting impatiently for October 26 to come around, I finally headed to the University of East Anglia, in Norwich, to see Sub Focus perform live for the second time. Now I absolutely LOVE Sub Focus, his music is exactly the type of drum and bass, dubstep and house combination that drives me wild when I hit the dance floor and often separates me from my friends who are not quite so excited by dance music.
Luckily going to Hideout Festival earlier this summer helped introduce me to some new raving buddies, while reinforcing for me how cool my current ones were – when going to gigs like these and planning to rave all night it is VERY important to choose pals that can keep up and will be with you until the very end of the night.
I was partying with my number one raving buddy and boyfriend, Mark Wolverson, his housemate, Piers Walton, DJ Mark Malle and Vikki Kinnear – The original Hideout Festival crew, and two new additions in Jade Mynott and Lizzie Russell. All of us are big music-lovers and most of us prefer dance music and often attend nights like these whether at Fabric in London, Warehouse Project in Manchester, or anywhere else we can find – in fact some of us are currently making plans to go to Tomorrowland Festival in Belgium next summer.
I have to be honest and say that although a huge Sub Focus fan, I was not as impressed with the release of Torus, preferring the massive banger tunes like Tidal Wave, Out the Blue and Could This Be Real which feature strong vocals to an incredible beat – all three are powerful songs in their own way and the reaction from the crowd when they were played said it all in terms of popularity.
I think that Torus is a bit of a grower, all of the songs sounded so much better live than they did when playing in my car, but still not up to the high quality I expected – I wonder if perhaps this is a sign that Nick Douwma is changing his sound with the times and is perhaps losing some of the qualities that I preferred about his music. I actually spoke to a couple of people later in the night who had been at the gig and they said a similar thing, that they were really impressed with the gig generally but that the quality of the music was not as they expected.
Despite this slight disappointment at the change in sound for Sub Focus, I have to say that I still have my favourite songs on the new album and amongst these are the obvious Out the Blue and Tidal Wave, but of the newer releases I also quite like Turn Back Time and You Make it Better – they certainly got me, and the rest of the crowd, dancing.
Despite my slight disappointment at some of the songs, I was very excited by the huge crowd that had turned out to see the gig and the incredible show delivered by Sub Focus. You could tell that the last time I saw him it was very early in his career compared to his success now – money had been poured into the performance which even featured a bit of a light show that dazzled and amazed the ravers as the twinkling spirals revolved – see top pic.
It was very impressive and the show led on very well from support act, Fred V & Grafix, who I managed to catch the last 20 minutes of – they were great and another pair of awesome DJs to add to my list of people I’ve seen. I love their remixes and often realise after that a great version of a song was actually mixed by them.
Overall it was a great gig in a fantastic venue with a really good crowd – everyone was really friendly and genuinely just looking to have a good time. I didn’t see any real trouble and everyone left with a big smile on their face. But, as usual, there were the small group of people who felt the need to try and start a mosh pit in the centre of the dance floor and star shoving people about. I don’t mind people having fun, but I will never understand where the fun is in a mosh pit – especially after seeing a girl get her face split open at V Festival and continuing to smash about while she bled copiously.
It is a very immature and sad way to spend a gig – especially for those who then boast about it later on via Twitter and Facebook about how they elbowed someone in the face, used it as an excuse to punch someone for fun or lost their shoes. What is the point? Fair enough at a gig you are bound to get pushed about in a busy crowd, but why does this mean you have to shove back and cause trouble? I actually broke up a potential fight in the crowd that night and am glad I managed to or me and my friends could have been caught in the crossfire. Luckily most people around us could hold their own in terms of being pushed about and we all worked together to keep enough space to breathe and have a dance.
Despite this is was an amazing gig and I can’t wait for the next one – Major Lazer in two weeks time! After the gig we headed to my favourite Norwich club, Hideout, where the great music continued thanks to Joshua Roberts, Dunny of Toolroom Records and Pete Graham for Sadiqi: Our 1st Birthday – a top event and we couldn’t stop dancing until the club closed and we were forced to leave. An amazing night with amazing friends at great venues.
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