Amongst 50,000 fellow Bestivallers, my eardrums have suffered a near three-day, solid dose of bass. All that remains is an incessant ringing beguiling the actual silence of boring normality. It’s a kind of torturous reminder that the festival season’s over and I’m soon to be back to the ‘strenuous’ life of a student. This year, however, I refuse to accept the end. Something better lies between now and next Summer than the comparatively underwhelming and sparse ‘headline and support’ gig/show format. It’s called Manchester’s Warehouse Project and it’s set to be our saviour.
Running between the 28th of September and New Year’s Day, it’s hard to summarise the six-year-old event in one word. At a push the most appropriate would be ‘exhibition’. Over three months the project will offer up 26 mouth-watering showcase nights, each hosted by a different artist, label or radio station allowing us Northern folk to dip our feet in wherever the flow feels at its freshest. Here is a selection of nights for which we have the highest expectations.
Friday 28th September – WHP Launch – Rinse
Venturing out of London, Rinse are celebrating their 18th birthday by launching the event with a bombardment of bass music. Including the commercially tasty Katy B and ‘party project’ producer Diplo, Rinse’s night promises a delectable, 37-man-long string of live acts, djs, MCs and producers.
Though yet to delve into the more artistically credited realm of production, Oneman and Jackmaster’s focus on turn-table technique will wreak fancy footwork on another of their more than devoted crowds. Known for somehow managing to blend tracks that range from the most obscure nooks of contemporary house to those they have respectively filched from the most forgotten crannies of 90s rnb and has-been rock, their sets are sure to solidify their reputation as indubitable crowd-workers.
As a man of much the same standing, the 1/3 component of Hessle Audio and devoted dj Ben UFO promises a journey through the expanse of techno, house and dubstep that has defined the produce of his label. Bringing Hessle’s appearance up to 2/3 of the family, Pearson Sound will also appear boasting the real, effortless brains of the mixing business.
Following the acclaim of her sensationally soulful debut album ‘Is Your Love Big Enough?’, Lianne La Havas might seem a curious counterpart to the occasion. Yet teasing out the subtle funk of her sound, a succession of remixes of her tracks have us anticipating a musical, Jessie Ware-esque dress-up for the occasion that will showcase a yet undiscovered versatility.
Also featuring: Skream, P Money, Zinc, Kode9, Plastician, Alunageorge, Roska, Jamie George, Loefah, Joker, Dismantle, T Williams, Youngsta, Icicle, Marcus Nasty, J:Kenzo, Brackles, Baauer, Elijah & Skilliam, Royal-T, Preditah + C4, Uncle Dugs, Mark Radford, Sian Anderson, SGT Pokes, Tippa, SP:MC, Shantie and MC Chunky.
Thursday 6th October – Curated by SBTRKT
This is a night made exciting by a few-year stretch of tasty collaborative efforts. Rising from the shadows of 2011 during which they faintly emerged supporting Friendly Fires on their sell-out tour, SBTRKT has teamed up with Sampha to dazzle his own, now pretty huge audiences. Placing a new emphasis on the percussive power of live drumplay, the masked man has ascended to heights of new artistic merit.
Doubling up under the name Daphni last year, Four Tet and Caribou combined their individual, unorthodox approaches to production to create the unnervingly dark track ‘Ye Ye’. After a 2012 filled with back-to-back sets, the night will see Four Tet’s astonishing 8th album ‘Pink’ performed live and Caribou separately behind the decks.
There’s then to be the much-awaited, live appearance of TNGHT comprising Hudson Mohawke and Lunice. Following Mohawke’s close affiliation with Kanye West on club-track ‘Mercy’, the two have recently dropped a series of minimalist hip-hop tracks that have become a staple sound within a plethora of dj sets. Here’s one I’m sure you will have had the pleasure of hearing.
The evening will also offer a chance to see Kwes in the limelight of this year’s succesful, solo-effort single ‘Bashful’. After producing for the likes of The xx and Micachu for years, 2012 has seen him become a name unto himself. If you heard anything about his set at Beacons, you’ll know he’s well worth seeing.
Also featuring: Rustie (DJ Set), Jacques Greene (DJ Set), Lone, XXXY, Pariah, Girl Unit, Two Inch Punch, Illum Sphere, Krystal Klear, Jonny Dub, Jon K, Damu and MC Chunky.
Saturday 13th October – Ape Birthday
Though a more minor attraction, Zane Lowe is pretty much the figurehead of Ape’s 7th Birthday and biggest event to date. For those familiar with his Radio 1 show, you’ll know that he has been a massive player in sky-rocketing the reputation of those that form the rest of the lineup including Sub Focus, Nero, Benga, Caspa and Mele.
There are no promises of niche gems, nor will it boast anything radically up-and-coming (perhaps other than 19-year-old Mele whose painfully undefinable sound has critics and fans alike craving his next installments), but this is not to be a flaw. The night is about the birth and rebirth of artists and the influences of their unique and ground-breaking sounds.
Much as Caspa’s ‘Marmite’ and Benga’s joint effort with Coki ‘Night’ lay the foundations for the generation-defining movement of dubstep, Doom’s prolific, 20-year position in rap and hip-hop has been one of remarkable adaption and self-reinvention. An appearance of the torch-bearing boss of Drum n Bass Shy FX and a Numbers showcase are also firmly listed on the cards.
Also featuring: Mark Ronson, Andy C, Toddla T, DJ Marky, David Rodigan MBE, Brenmar, Kid Koala presents 12 Bit Blues, The Bug ft. Flowdan & Daddy Freddy, Juicy DJs, Rich Reason and Numbers Showcase (DJ EZ, Jackmaster, Deadboy, Redinho and Spencer)
Friday 26th October – Halloween Special – Curated by Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs
Anything but extinct, there’s no question as to what the main attraction of WHP’s Halloween Special is. With the release of debut album ‘Trouble’ on Polydor in June, TEED’s Orlando Higginbottom has been featured repeatedly on Radio 1 as Nick Grimshaw’s pick of the week. He has defied the boundaries of electro, pop, house and rave. In this, he has been dubbed ‘kaleidoscopic’ by WHP, even a ‘radical’, ’21st century entertainer’ by the BBC. As a witness of his set at Bestival, I can say that his vocals are by no means perfect but his prowess as a performer is impeccable.
Creative and colourful too are his choices of accompanying artists for the night. The 2 Bears, a collaboration between Hot Chip’s Joe Goddard and Ministry of Sound’s Raf Daddy, will be there with their January album release ‘Be Strong’. At times it is a fallable and sensationally slap-stick collection of tracks but occasional orchestral moments donate an overriding and irresistable peculiarity.
With news of a 2013 album release and the chance of a few sneak-peak previews, Factory Floor’s appearance makes the whole thing mighty tempting too.
Also Featuring: Derrick Carter, John Talabot, Matias Aguayo, Todd Terje, Jack (Friendly Fires) & Edwin (Foals), Daniel Avery, Mosca, Drop the Mustard, Huxley, Tom Demac, Alex Jones, Shenoda, Indigo, Ste Roberts and Cedric Maison.
Friday 9th November – WHP X RBMA
Deemed the ‘most evasive, unpredictable, fascinating and talked about artists of the modern day’, WHP are proud to have nabbed Flying Lotus for their most appealing November night, just before the release of his long-awaited, October album ‘Until The Quiet Comes’.
The focal Lotus will also be complimented by appearances of the legendary producer and turn-table master DJ Shadow, The XX’s Jamie Smith, founder of Manchester’s Hoya:Hoya Illum Sphere and, this time, the entirety of Hessle Audio.
Also featuring: Squarepusher, Martyn, Lapalux, Thundercat, Krystal Klear, Jonny Dub, Shed, Prosumer and Deviation (Floating Points, Benji B and Moxie)
Saturday 1st December – Resident Advisor
Headlining one of the lengthiest, day and night events in WHP history are the indestructable, veterans of British electronic music Orbital. Having returned for the first time in eight years with the release of new, April album ‘Wonky’, this night is set to attract fans from all across Europe. In other words; get on tickets fast.
Other highlights include the notorious dance anthem-maker Julio Bashmore, Dusky, Joy Orbison & Boddika, Scuba and the God-send redeemer of deep house George Fitzgerald.
Also featuring: Modeselektor, Chris Liebing, Marcel Dettmann, Apparat, Levon Vincent, Zomby, Matthew Dear (DJ set), Blawan, Shackleton, Nathan Fake, Evian Christ and Andro.
Saturday 8th December – WHP Presents
It’s difficult to look back into your early teens and not have a soft-spot for The Chemical Brothers’ notable hit ‘Do it Again’. Their influence on the progression of dance from their first emergence in the Manchester of 1991 has been huge. As a pair, Tom Rowlands and Ed Simon are amongst few producers in recent history to ‘break the USA’, gaining platinum status on their ‘Exit Planet Dust’ LP.
Alongside this unmissable, dj-set appearance will be London-based Maya Jane Coles, maker of the ‘Masterpiece’ EP Michael Weatherall and Bicep.
Also featuring: James Murphy, Horse Meat Disco, Justin Robertson, Lewis Boardman, Greg Lord, Will Tramp and Idiosync.
More information and ticket details can be found @ http://www.thewarehouseproject.com/calendar.php
By Jonjo Lowe