Saturday 5th October we celebrated 25 years of the most iconic record label in Drum and Bass;
At one of the most impressive venues in London: if not the world. It wasn’t just good, it was mind altering, outlook changing, and absolutely incredible; and if you missed it: my condolences.
This was my first visit to Printworks, and it excelled every expectation I had. Firstly the venue is beyond huge, walking to the box office you feel like you are entering a theme park, and that feeling continues walking through the expansive venue, even after 11 hours I didn’t feel like I had truly explored every corner.
Historically Printworks was the home of the Evening Standard, the building has stood since 1873, 146 years of History, and the downfall of one of London’s most prolific newspapers, has resulted in the birth of Printworks, a new icon in the London nightlife scene. Drum and Bass culture needed this. As you explore the venue you feel the soul and the presence of the printing revolution, ghostly printing presses and machinery adorning the halls, highlighted by the impressive light-show that is the beating heart of this unbelievable location.
A celebration of a quarter century of Metalheadz called for an incredible line-up, and there were no disappointments, with Artists who’s imprint is weaved into the very fibres of the label:
David Rodigan kicked off the party for me, in an outfit channelling Brick top from the film Snatch, and yes we did ‘Wake the f*ck up!’. Rodigan has a stage presence and energy that we don’t usually see at Drum and Bass rave, and I enjoyed every second of it. With the early kickoff at Midday, we started the day off right; David Rodigan for lunch, to settle out stomachs for one hell of a dinner.
The Dark room certainly lived up to it’s name, and was one hell of a contrast from the visual light show of Press Hall. The highlight for me was time spent with Artificial Intelligence, DLR and Nymfo alongside Codebreaker, deep dark and dirty, with one hell of a lyricist. It is easy to get lost in the confined darkness of this room, and forget that you are in one of the largest venues in the UK, this place has an energy and a magic like no other.
I absolutely have to mention DJ Storm B2B Flight, who delivered us a set that encapsulated the very essence of Metalheadz, at the same time as highlighting the strength of female DJ’s within Drum and Bass in 2019. Easily the best track selection of the night.
Goldie loved every second of his party, he was bouncing between rooms and revelling in the success of 25 years of hard work. It is easy to forget the people behind the music we love, Goldie has given so much to Drum and Bass, and I’m so pleased this event got the turnout it truly deserved. No doubt about it Goldie’s set was an absolute treat, the visuals incredible and the stage was filled with Metalheadz icons enjoying the party, I felt like I was one of the family, there for the reunion, and there were smiles all round.
I really can’t say much else, other than that was the night of the year for me, and considering I have just returned from Sun and Bass, that took one hell of a beating. If you haven’t yet made a visit to Printworks, absolutely do it, and I hope you have a chance to raise a glass to a quarter of a century of Metalheadz, long live the label, long live Drum and Bass.
I will leave you with a tune that was the soundtrack to my night, maybe even the soundtrack to my life..