With a brand new Void sound system and a spate of big-name bookings, Joshua Brooks is certainly making waves during this autumn season. Friday 19th September was no different, as promoters Meat Free took over for the night, bringing with them Youandewan and October.
Meat Free was set up with the aim of putting on house and techno nights that revolve around pure, unadulterated fun, which in the case of Friday night meant a dance floor littered with inflatable toys, bunting and glitter-soaked revellers. In a packed club these additions may have given the desired effect, however in the context of a well under-capacity Joshua Brooks they fell a little flat in my opinion, and the inflatables became truly jarring when I was clocked in the face by a beach-ball kicked by some drunk dickhead.
But these minor annoyances were overshadowed by the strength of the two headline sets. Youandewan held down the 12-2 slot, beginning with his own brand of slow-building, driving house before transitioning into pounding techno for the last hour or so. Skudge Records affiliate October then followed with a heavier set in general, a personal highlight coming when he played “Jack7” by MMM. The afore-mentioned Void sound system provided the necessary weight for each piece of wax that arrived at the decks.
Overall I was impressed with the night, and felt that most of the shortcomings couldn’t be blamed on the organisers. However, although I do feel this sort of night centred wholly on dancing and debauchery has its place in Manchester’s clubbing scene, I believe it is better suited to other genres, such as dancehall or garage. For me, house and techno nights out are most enjoyable when they are taken somewhat seriously. But I’m sure there will be countless others who feel differently, in which case I wish the Meat Free girls all the best in their quest to bring the good vibes to Manchester’s techno-heads.
Joshua Brooks, Friday 19th September
– Oscar Allan