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Blog Club Review

Eats Everything B2B With Yousef at Circus, Liverpool

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With warmer temperatures emitted into the atmosphere that were controlled by no others better than Yousef, Eats Everything and Joris Voorn, there could arguably have been no better way to welcome in the beginning of summer. Alongside these were guests from the Visionquest label, including Ryan Crosson, Sean Reeves, Lee Curtis as well as Lewis Boardman and Scott Lewis. These masters of music sent the antics into full swing down at the Circus, performed in the East Village Arts Club, Liverpool.

A trail of house and techno fanatics patiently lined up on the old cobble street outside, where distant vibrations of electronic melodies floated across the night. Making our way through the back room to the Loft, where the vigorous blue lights were bouncing off the walls and reflecting into the crowd’s eyes, Scott Lewis launched the night. In the main room was Lewis Boardman. The Circus trickery had begun, leaving a cryptic trail running throughout the space.

Despite visiting the venue once before, it seemed there was an alternative crowd present. With only a glazed recollection of its past layout when it was formerly known as Masque, it still remains quirky by name and quirky by nature. The re-vamp in 2013 had successfully transformed it to what is now the East Village Arts Club.

It is a fun, old building with high ceilings and corridors that veer off in different directions. Confusing levels combined with multi-dimensional surfaces and a wondrous layout, made it feel like we were inside an optical illusion – similar to a series of tessellating stairs in the famous drawing of ‘Relativity’ by Escher. The bouncing lights projected colours of excitement, creating an animated tone among the crowd.

Walking into the packed out main room, the heat hit like the door of a scorching oven. To travel from one side to the other, considering the space fits a maximum of 1200, it posed as an obstacle course in its own right. Once inhabiting and guarding the surrounding territory, the collective Circus gathered and the musical delight took focus.  Kathy Brown’s ‘Turn Me Out’ pierced the airwaves with its old school flavour. The visuals were at minimum due to the heavy crowd although the brightly coloured lasers remained washing the room.

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Dutch DJ, Joris Voorn took to the decks in the main room and steered the journey smoothly onwards and upwards. The sounds of X-Press 2 (Carl Craig Remix) with ‘Kill 100’, kept the deep techno vibes bouncing. The room was fuelled with excitement and dedicated to appreciating the music. This was clearly expressed by all the head bouncing and shuffling that was happening around the show. There were countless great teasers of tracks, old and new, including Sal Soul Nugget’s ‘The Girl Next Door’. This was like a hidden like a gem in the middle of the circus. Lil Louis & The World ‘French Kiss’ wasn’t far behind which brought the 90’s crowd alive, with its soulful and deep house. In contrast, the recent ‘Sweet Love’, a latino-loca influenced production, by Luca M and JUST2, was dropped around many other great tunes. The circus games remained intact.

Peaking an indulged crowd to the highest of heights, Joris Voorn’s latest track, ‘Ringo’ prepared the crossover to the next Circus leaders in line. It’s blissful, euphoric sound absorbed into the eardrums, leaving a sublime tranquillity throughout the mind.

The sweaty haven of party animals continued to lap up the sounds. As the scene was fast approaching it’s change in control, the majestic music men, Eats Everything and Yousef, took to the elevated booth. There was a huge progression towards this crossover, channelling the sound over a wavy and unpredictable climate. Despite the lighter tone in musical depth, the breadth of the bass grew increasingly stronger, leaving a dramatic build up to the Circus sequence that was ahead. The two highly talented DJs enjoyed the ride that built suspense and mocked the crowd. They milked the audience reaction as they continued to clown around, cracking out their tricks and illusions into the smoky atmosphere. The space between the changeover brought twenty seconds of stillness. When the music was dropped steadily back in, the suspense conducted a sharp spark of electricity through the room, breaking the stunned crowd and silence. It was like a new wind.

The change in weather meant a new dimension of sound. Eats Everything back to back with Yousef bounced a heavy more aggressive sequence against a lighter, dreamier mood. This continued on, like a ball in a tennis match. The saying, ‘opposites attract’ would be apt.

Much of the music was chopped up, looped and recycled with different versions, spins and other tracks blended, to leave a subtle hint as well as taunting the crowd. When Arnaud Rebotini’s ‘777’ was released then pulled back, to then be re-released and dropped back, it converted the suspending dirty bass into a whirlwind of sound. Nick and Danny Chatelain, ‘Is Killing Me’ kept the trippy sound progressing on. The sparkling lights formed patterns and shapes, as the journey through the night at the Circus continued on.

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As it got later the space became more empty and open. There was room to dance freely and the sense of a gentle draft brushing across the air and overhead was refreshing. Numerous were samples used throughout the night with blurred origins – not an uncommon occurrence in the music of today. One example was what sounded like, Royksopp’s ‘What Else Is There’, which seems to be a regular feature in various club nights over recent months. This series of bars were tightened up and compressed to evolve into a new sound of its own.

The show continued on and as Yousef, resident and promoter of the club for its 11th year running, wound the stunned crowed up, to increase the peak in excitement. When Green Velvet’s ‘Bigger Than Prince’ (released on Circus Recordings, which is Yousef’s own label) was vividly identified, the buzz was strong and the senses were transparent. The bass bounced like a ball onto a silky, velvet surface, absorbing the vibrations as they reverberated throughout the room.  The expressions on the dancer’s faces, along with the movement to the rhythm, were translated into an energetic release and intense satisfaction to the direction that the night was running.

Up the Escher-influenced stairs, it led to a bright light open bar area, with benches, school chairs and sofas. These created an authentic characteristic to the interior of the Arts Club, representing a standard school common-room. To add to full effect, the expressive rave goers were prating around, like circus animals on roller skates gliding across the shiny floor.

As the games wrapped up, the tunes became less aggressive. Octave One, ‘Blackwater’ helped draw the performance closer to an end. The mellow tones and slower dance moves were apparent, as the weary eyes were melting with the music.

The Circus was filled with fun and games, which not once failed to entertain. Since such exclusive line ups in the house and techno scene, are limited within the music culture around Liverpool, there is no doubt this event is the hottest show in town.

Words: Rose Mason

Photos: Gemma Parker Photography

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Grahame Farmer

Grahame Farmer’s love affair with electronic music goes back to the mid-90s when he first began to venture into the UK’s beloved rave culture, finding himself interlaced with some of the country’s most seminal club spaces. A trip to dance music’s anointed holy ground of Ibiza in 1997 then cemented his sense of purpose and laid the foundations for what was to come over the next few decades of his marriage to the music industry.

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