- Published on Wednesday, 07 September 2016 15:30
During the late 80’s and 90’s acid house movement and before social media came into play where with a click of a few buttons you can invite your entire contact list the way to promote your party was the Flyer. Word of mouth was as still is the fastest method equally as important was the flyer, it was your personal invitation usually handed to you on a night. If you didn’t have one or know somebody there was no way to get in.
In the days of £5 illegal raves flyers were simple with no location of the whereabouts just a number to call and you would meet along the way at pubs or service stations in convoys usually somewhere along the M25 route that would lead you to a field, abandoned warehouse or aircraft hanger to dance.
Over time flyers soon evolved into flamboyant futuristic pieces of printed artwork even becoming the most traded item around school playgrounds during 1992. You would go to your mates house and their bedroom wall would be covered with them, I remember the most popular choice of wallpaper among my peers were Sunrise, Telepathy, Jungle Fever, Innovation, Raindance, Labyrinth and Fantazia. Dreamscape was also a favourite and the first being Interhouse sterns flyers.
From Ebay to Gumtree and Amazon there is a market for rave memorabilia with dedicated websites specializing and in buying and selling these now collectors items, some are sold for a much as £155. Take a trip down memory lane with us…. Here are some examples of the most expensive flyers that have been sold.
Helter Skelter Milwaukees Closure Rave Flyer. £50 on eBay.
Interdance Sterns Kings Lynn Rave Flyer Pre Flyer. £50. CARL COX
KARMA ENERGY Rave Flyer Flyers 1/7/89 A5 Rare Acid House. £50 on eBay. PAUL OAKENFOLD
Interdance Sterns 30 March Amended Rave Flyer 1990. £100 on eBay. Kevin Saunders
Shoom Opening Night Flyer The Park £97.00 07/02/13
World Dance Rare Illegal Acid House Rave Flyer 19/08/89. £45 on eBay.
Genesis Biology Together As One £95.00 06/07/14
Words by Tiffany Allen
- Published on Wednesday, 07 September 2016 11:01
As the fateful hour fell upon us at 2am today, Islington Council ruled to close the doors of fabric indefinitely. London’s iconic institution for London's electronic music had become a worldwide landmark within the clubbing landscape, an educational 'church' which music lovers have flocked to weekly for 17 years. Many of us stayed up into the early hours of the morning to hear the fateful decision, which has left us all feeling shocked and somewhat numb. In a climate of global change this decision has given a depressing nod towards what’s in store for the future of this generation. Lets cast our minds back to the morning we as a nation woke up to the devastating news that we had left the European Union. Similarly this will be a somewhat bitter pill to swallow (no pun intended)
By revoking the license of fabric it is the aim of both Islington Council and the Metropolitan Police to prevent any further drug related deaths, which for someone who has never set foot inside the venue may seem like a pretty good idea. However, we are not one of those people and we know that revoking a license from such a well-respected institution is in turn cutting off the power supply of London’s clubbing community.
By shutting venues down and killing off London’s nightlife you will not tackle drug deaths. The solution is not to place blame on venues by shutting them down and in turn using this a scapegoat for the problem. The solution is the educate people about drugs and provide drug testing facilities at venues to prevent any further fatalities. Why is it that more people die from alcohol yet it’s still legal and pubs never close? We could argue why police stations are still open in London considering,
‘Since Fabric opened in 1999 there have sadly been 6 accidental deaths. But, to put that into perspective during the same time period 108 people died while being held in custody by the Metropolitan Police.’
Today’s decision confirms that as a nation UK nightlife is under threat contributing to a 50% decrease in venues across the country. In closing the doors of fabric Islington Council and the Metropolitan Police are in hand pushing electronic music further underground to illegal venues where health and safety will be no where near as thorough as licensed venues such as fabric and others which have been forced to close before it. As a result of the the decision made today Alan Miller, Chair of the Nightlife Industries Association, has stated that the NIA will be starting a Fund for Fabric to fight back against the decision and in hopes of preventing the indefinite closure of the London nightclub. There is a call for the dance community to come together to raise the funds for this case to be taken to the high court. Time to fight back.
"However, documents obtained by The Independent via a Freedom of Information request show that Fabric’s closure was a long pre-planned event, orchestrated by a cash-strapped council, using the police as pawns. "
Read more by the Independent.co.uk
As we are well aware there is a much bigger motive in play here, ignoring almost 150 000 signatures and all the evidence, they still went ahead to revoke the license only for us then to discover the recent news of a £200m property development of the venue now it has been forced to shut its doors. It is clear that the cultural heritage that Fabric has created over the 17 years of opening has been disregarded, as have the livelihoods of its 250 employees.
We CAN and WILL change things if we unite for one common vision; music is what has brought many of us together let’s stand up and not let them stop the music. MEOKO would like to send all the love in the world and thoughts to the team at fabric, we are all standing right behind you in full support.
Over the last two months, we have waved goodbye to Shapes, Dance Tunnel, Passing Clouds and now our beloved fabric, who is next? Please join us in taking part in a peaceful demonstration to bring awareness for the dying nightlife that is being ripped away from us.
PROTEST TO SAVE LONDON'S NIGHTLIFE COMMUINITY
By Mahala Ashley
Read more about the close of fabric on MEOKO
- Published on Monday, 05 September 2016 14:10
An issue close to all of our hearts. We are sure that everyone reading this is fully aware of the current situation in our beloved London. It seems as if there are legions of people trying to suck the life out of our city, and now the time has come for us to have our say, stick together, and stand up for what we love.
Tomorrow Tuesday the 6th of September, a hearing will take place reviewing the license of the UK’s home of clubbing, fabric. Sadly within the last few months there has been two tragic deaths in relation to the club. On separate occasions two 18 year olds, either smuggled drugs in to the club, or purchased them inside, and passed away due to the effects. Shutting the club down is simply the easy option for weak and narrow minded people, and we must do what we can to ensure they can not take the easy option. It was inevitable there would be huge support for an institution of such high quality, with nearly 103,000 signatures on Wet Yourself resident Jacob Husley’s petition to save the club, and over 900 complaints (which will be used in the hearing) were filed to Islington Council despite the short deadline they gave. But it is not time to relax.
PLEASE SIGN THE PETITION AHEAD OF TOMROROWS LICENSE REVIEW
Anybody who has stepped inside that building will understand the true sense of unity and family, starting with the security on the door, all the way to the people collecting glasses on the dance floor. Everybody is happy. Over 250 people with permanent roles, rely on the club to pay their bills and put food on the table. Week in week out for years on end you are guaranteed to see the same staff, doing the same great job, making the people feel welcome. This year Fabric made global news with the fantastic story of the polish couple who spent the night at Wet Yourself (weekly Sunday party), you simply wouldn’t find this anywhere else amongst our nightlife, and proves the culture and variation of people the club attracts. People travel across the world for this club.
Earlier this week, witness statements were released from two police offers who were asked to take part in ‘Operation Lenor’, a covert visit to the club to see if they are complying within license regulations. For those that don’t know Lenor is a fabric softener. The name says it all, it’s embarrassing, and feels as if they are mocking the situation. Renowned for being one of the strictest clubs in the UK, having experienced this ourselves several times, we struggle to believe the statements of just two people should be able to have much of an effect on the verdict. The police and local council should be supporting the club in improving drug safety, not just brushing it under the carpet, and shutting the club down. The problem is much bigger than this, and for years Fabric have been setting the bar, in ensuring the safety of customers is number one priority. Adding to this Fabric director Cameron Leslie this week pledged to pursue a ‘Gold Standard’ in clubbers safety if allowed to continue past the 6th of September.
This year Sadiq Khan was announced as mayor of London, and he won many people’s hearts by speaking out and saying he will protect the nightlife in our city. However, in a reply to Jacob’s petition/letter it feels as if he is dismissing the real problems and issues with the club, and even quoted a diabolical article from the Islington gazette that used statements from a boy saying ’80 percent of clubgoers on a particular night appeared to be under the influence of drugs’ which Is a weak accusation. We believe the Mayor could dig a little deeper than an article for a local newspaper full of false statements. It feels as if the city is taking one step forward and two steps back. How can we lose such an integral part of our nightlife if we are working towards a 24 hour city? Our laws and regulations seem outdated compared to other countries, it is the 21st century, a time to think with an open mind. Countries such as Portugal, Austria & the Netherlands have all made drug testing available. People are always going to want to enjoy themselves so why can we not ensure they do it safely. If safe environments are taken from us, people will move on to illegal raves, and dangerous parties. In Jacob’s reply to Mr Khan he actually discusses this, and how UK festival Secret Garden Party worked with police and charity The Loop, in making testing available for festival goers. This speaks for itself:
“Around a quarter of people who brought in their drugs then asked us to dispose of them when they discovered that they had been mis-sold or duds. We were taking dangerous substances out of circulation”
Clippings from islingtontribune - Full article here
It feels as if local authorities, government, and land developers are doing anything they can to take the fun out of our city. Come on, how many luxury apartments do we need? And as for the government, does anybody remember when traces of cocaine were found in the toilets of the house of commons? Seems a bit unfair to take away our fun, whilst their clearly enjoying themselves. Last month the Hackney Gazette released an article regarding details of any clubbers that attended an event with more than 40 people at Studio Spaces had their details passed on to police unknowingly. This rule was brought in to halt the increase of spaces in Shoreditch selling alcohol, to us this is absurd, the area clearly thrives off that business, helping build a fantastic go-to area of London.
UK nightlife in the last ten years has taken a major hit, in 2005 there was 3144 clubs and we have lost nearly 50% as of last year reaching 1733. It seems as if every week there is negative news regarding our precious nightlife, most recently the devastating news of studio 338, and Shapes, Hackney Wick another key club in the city closing. Our country attracts an amazing array of artists, Dj’s and events, so let’s work together and create some positivity, and a path for safer partying.
JUST 24 HOURS LEFT TO SHOW YOUR SUPPORT FOR FABRIC - SIGN HERE
After many years of pressure from the local council and police, It seems as if they are against the club and not willing to work with them OR the community to improve the safety of the people. There are so many blurred lines amongst this investigation, and rumours circulating, we are not entirely sure what to believe anymore. Judging by some witness statements and articles being shared around some of it seems a bit far fetched and some what fabricated. Showing how far some people are willing to go to put an end to London nightlife. Pinning it on nightclubs is definitely not the answer. We are yet to see anything regarding the families of the two males, it would be interesting to see what they have to say regarding the lack of substance education, and whether they believe shutting down night life is the best option. A solid relationship, between authorities and night life businesses needs to be built as soon as possible to reduce the chance of more people being effected.
This is something we feel so passionately about and so should you. Night life has been an integral part of the UK for many generations to enjoy. Unique, iconic, and just a completely different level to anything else the UK offers, Fabric has continually brought in the best artists and live acts week in, week out. Whether it's a Friday with drum and bass you love, or a Saturday with house and techno till the early hours, if Fabric is shutdown there will be a huge chunk missing from the city. The people with the power may say we are ignorant, but we are simply just trying to make them see the situation in a different light, and how our city can evolve and not decline. If everybody gets involved and enough noise is made, they must listen to us. Save Fabric. Save our nightlife.
By Zac Bidwell
- Published on Wednesday, 17 August 2016 12:19
There are many side effects to living life too excessively. Drink too much and you’ll have a hangover. Do it for years and you’ll need a new liver. Too much speed you won’t sleep for a night. Too often and you could end up with a serious heart condition. Too much coke and you’ll need viagra before your 30th birthday etc etc you’ve heard all of these before. Much less recognized but just as life changing is tinnitus- the permanent ringing in your ears normally obtained through overexposure to loud noise. Come back from a party and your ears will ring for a day or two, do it too often and the ringing could never go away. With plenty of remedies but no real cure, it is one of the most frustrating and undesirable side effects of enjoying music too fully. The list of people afflicted by it is endless- with Carl Craig, Richie Hawtin, Eats Everything, Rebekah, Dubfire among the more publicised ones. The ringing can be so unbearable it’s caused many an industry professional to retire. Audiologists have dubbed it the only mortal condition they encounter clinically- some people see suicide as the only way out. As one of our readers, we value your well being and want to help you avoid this problem. Together with EarPeace, MEOKO has put together some case studies to help you understand how it will affect your life, as well as some advice on how to prevent it.
My love for house music started at 16. So strong was my attachment to this scene I decided I wanted to make a career for myself in the music industry. After five years promoting warehouse parties, I founded MEOKO. As part of my job, I spend a lot of time at clubs, in festivals, generally in environments where the decibel level is much louder than what is considered ‘safe’. Having been in this industry for so long, you can’t avoid knowing about tinnitus, hearing the stories of those affected or seeing the DJs wearing ear plugs. However, it’s something that’s always at the back of your mind, you always think never me and carry on living life more fully than you realise your body can handle. 12 years on from that first night, it’s suddenly hit me: a strange, unfamiliar noise constantly whistling through my left ear. At first i put it down to water in my ear and assured myself it will pass but unfortuantely for me, three months later and the exact same sound is with me permanently. Sleeping naturally at night is a thing of the past and I find guided meditation tapes are the only way through it. its scary to think i will never know absolute silence again. I do feel i caught it at early stages and so provided I protect my ears at all costs from now on, it should not get any worse. I so wish I had heeded the warning of others and can’t put it out there enough: wear the f*cking ear plugs! Tinnitus might not kill you but a life without music isn’t worth it either!
Nicole Venter, founder of MEOKO
I have been suffering from Tinnitus for about 5 years. I’ve always been aware of it, as the ringing in my ears used to come and go. However, after one very long weekend with gigs 5 days in a row, it became permanent. The adaption to it took some serious work: I got myself some professional earplugs, and did a lot of yoga which helps to stretch out the muscles around the ear. I also used to sleep with earplugs in- while the absolute silence made the tinnitus more intense, it made the day much more bearable. The combination worked really well- the tinnitus calmed down and I felt a lot more relaxed about my hearing. However, I got complacent: I was using my earplugs less regularly, until I finally lost them and stupidly didn’t replace them. With the amount of gigs I’ve had abroad, along with WYS at Fabric every Sunday, Mr T has come back stronger than ever. I’ve got some new ear plugs made and use them all the time- but honestly I really wish I hadn’t stopped using them while I still had the chance. Ear plugs might take some getting used to, but the best trick I know is to put them in before you leave your house or hotel. You’ll get used to the sound being lower before you even get to the club, making it feel like you never put anything in in the first place!
Jacob Husley, Promoter / DJ and producer - WetYourSelf! at fabric
I’ve suffered from tinnitus for 5 years, it happened during a long night out. I could feel my ears being irritated by the sound but I did not listen to my body. I was having too much fun and I didn’t care at the time. Physically there is no actual pain, but at first it is very disturbing and stressful- a constant background noise you can’t avoid no matter what you try (mine is a highly irritating high pitched squeal). I’m told you should treat your ears as you would treat your muscles: you can’t work your ears to hard without warming them up, nor can you work them for too long. The louder the music, the less time you should expose your hearing to it- and take breaks! Additionally, wearing ear plugs is essential to preventing tinnitus. Custom made ones are great if you can afford them but there are also good earplugs on the market for less than a score. If it happens, do not stress or worry about it because it make it worse. Some people only suffer temporarily, but even then it should be disturbing enough to make you think twice about wearing ear plugs the next time.
Remi Mazet / Producer & Live Act / Colors, La vie en rose, Halucienda, Hot waves
To help you avoid becoming the next case study, hearing charity Action on Hearing Loss recommend three ways to enjoy events while preventing ear damage:
1- Take regular breaks
2- stand back from speakers
3- wear ear plugs!
One and two are easily done, but wearing ear plugs is the biggest change. Most people’s problem with them is that they dampen the sound at an event and ‘ruin’ the experience. This is true of foam ear plugs, which block sound and muffle the music. However, like buying a pair of good shoes a pair of good ear plugs really can enhance and extend your relationship with music. For music, you specifically want something with high fidelity or acoustic filters. These filters are designed allow sound through clearly at safer volumes. The background noise will be muted, making the music even clearer. There are plenty of brands out there, but our favourite so far has been EarPeace. A company with a fresh take on hearing protection who address the very problems that have detered people in the past. Multiple filters ensure no loss of sound quality, whilst a low profile design and different skin tone options mean they go unnoticed when out. These linear attenuating earplugs are made out of hypoallergenic silicone, so can be reused, and won’t keep falling out of your ears, and they come in a small, stylish aluminium case. In short – these will improve your experience, keeping you free from hearing problems without having to sacrifice your nights. They are also the most value for a affordable amount. If you’re looking at custom moulded plugs, we really like ACS and Reid Audio. ACS have been around for what seems like forever, and Reid Audio have developed the technology to make custom ear plugs in 48 hours.
High fidelity filters, available with silicone or custom moulded plugs, allow sound through clearly yet at safer volumes. High quality brands like EarPeace make plugs out of hypoallergenic silicone, lasting years while being comfortable over long periods of use. They come in nifty little cases and only cost 15 pounds.
On the other hand, custom made plugs start at around £100. Brands like ACS and newcomers Reid Audio are among the most popular and provide good value for money.
Beyond ear plugs, a good idea would be to download a decibel meter onto your phone. While not 100% accurate, it will give you a very good indication of the noise levels in your environment. Using this table, this will help you deduce how long you can stay in that environment before you need a break. Outside of events, you absolutely must buy noise cancelling headphones. Non-cancelling ones, like the iPhone headphones, force you to turn the sound up way too high to cover outside noise. Noise cancelling headphones generally have a silicone tip, which takes the shapes of your ear and acts as a barrier to the noise outside.
We really hope these stories and advice will help you avoid tinnitus. As Nicole said: “it’s one of those things that stays in the back of your mind… and you think 'never me'”. Everyone who has it thought the same thing. The key really is to listen to your body- if it feels too loud, it definitely is. Only an idiot would think less of you for taking some precaution. A few minutes of loud music aren’t worth a lifetime of hearing sirens in your head, particularly as future events will be sullied by the fear of making it worse. Now see you on the dancefloor….!
MEOKO has also teamed up with EarPeace to secure a discount code for you so that you can get your hands on them 15 % cheaper than usual – because everyone deserves to be protected! Just insert the discount code 'MEOKOEARS' when at the checkout...
- Published on Thursday, 11 August 2016 13:30
“You’re pretty good for a girl!”
“Are you warming up for your boyfriend?”
“Let me show you how that works….”
Any female DJ will have had some comment aimed at them that makes them stop and think….excuse me? During mixed gender b2bs the men will hog the decks, even at house parties the boys will unplug your phone from the aux cable and swap in theirs, proclaiming “girls just don’t really know good music!”, as they play a song produced by Hannah Wants.
We all know the issues surrounded sexism in club culture and female DJS: harassment in clubs, sexist comments on Boiler Room, a lack of representation in the media such as DJ Mag, and the list goes on. Although talk on the subject matter does mean progression, and workshops such as this one and all-female collectives are definitely encouraging women to get involved there’s still a crazy amount of bias with regards to club and festival bookings.
I, for one, have not been lucky enough to live somewhere with any encouraging female collectives circulating, and have therefore ran in the male DJ circles, always being paid less, picked when no man was available, and generally placed in less serious nights and earlier positions. Although I love the art enough to not let this discourage I’m sure this is plenty to force some other women give up. Patronising comments and unwanted advice are the sounds of my DJ career, my personal favourite being “all you need to do is use your ears….”. I don’t even think they know they’re doing what they’re doing, it’s ingrained in their frail male egos to put me down so they feel better (of course this doesn’t apply to everyone, some have given me genuinely good advice and oppurtunities, it’s just a minority case).
So let me ask you a question male DJs, why do you think you’re better? Have you done a scientific study and deduced your ears actually ARE biologically better than mine? Do you have some 5th sense that means you naturally mix in a superior way? Or is it just because you’re big and strong and can handle the technology better? Because I’m pretty sure if we were all blindfolded you would not be able to tell a male and female DJ apart.
There’s the other side of things, a difficult argument with regards to female DJs dressing in a ‘sexual’ way (e.g Nina Kraviz in the bathtub) and stereotyping themselves as simply eye-candy rather than a good DJ. But this is FALSE, the stereotype doesn’t need to exist unless you let it, being attractive and a good DJ is not an oxymoron surprisingly enough! Girls can do what they want, just like you can. If you can take your top of during a set (please don’t) then so can we.
So next time one of your female friends asks if she can try out your decks, don’t laugh or patronise her, give her a demo and you’ll quickly see that we’re just as interested and talented as men, if we were just given the right level of encouragement.
By Laura Hely Hutchinson