Reviewed: Warehouse Project Opening 2021
Two years feels like a long time. After a hiatus this long, through no fault of their own, the renowned Warehouse Project in Manchester made their iconic return to the city. Located in the sprawling Depot Mayfield, Data Transmission headed to their first WHP Drum & Bass event of 2021- Metropolis.
With the hint of summer still lingering in the air, revellers made their way to the disused railway station from all corners of the country, making the most out of the last bit of warmth of the year in their edgy festival wear and sunnies before Autumn closes in.
As we made our way towards the depot, masses lingered around the entrance queues with excitement. With a capacity of 16,000, Warehouse Project has to be one of the largest arenas in the UK for raves and we couldn’t wait to get our teeth stuck in. With a bill featuring some of the biggest names in Drum & Bass at the moment, we were intrigued to see how the acts would transform summer festival sets into indoor arena performances.
Made up of three separate rooms, Warehouse Project consists of the Depot (the largest room), Concourse (middle room) and Archive (the smallest room) which all have unique characters of their own. We headed towards Archive for our first set of the night- Technimatic b2b LSB. Easing ourselves in gently, the soothing liquid melodies danced around the intimate setting, with LSB’s remix of Culture Shock’s ‘There For You’ illuminating the set. The Archive stage is also reminiscent of the main room at Warehouse Project’s old location, Store Street, which admittedly I do kind of miss at times despite how much I love Depot Mayfield, so it felt right to start our night there.
Before I went to the event, I’d already decided in my head who I’d wanted to see: Wilkinson, Sub Focus and Andy C, but upon arrival, we decided to switch it up and try catching some new sets for a change as we’d seen all of these three before. As we headed over to Kanine over at Concourse I said: “We’ll just stay for half an hour and then go back to Wilkinson”, and the next thing I knew, we’d watched the whole of Kanine’s set!
Concourse is my favourite room out of the three; it feels electric and intimate as the audience wrap themselves around the DJ booth and can get up close and personal with the artist. Kanine had the crowd eating out of the palm of his hand as he absolutely ripped through his set with the best drops and
unexpected remixes; he was hands down my highlight act of the night.
Swiftly making our way to The Depot to catch the beginning of Sub Focus’ set, this was a completely different vibe to when I saw him perform at The One in the Woods festival (read the review here). From playing to around a thousand and now to 16,000, I felt blessed that I had been able to catch himself and MC ID in such an intimate setting only months before. Tearing through his latest ‘Reworks’ album as the strobes flashed throughout the vast space, I felt a sense of euphoria and had to pinch myself that events on this scale are actually back- it felt unreal!
We kept our feet firmly planted in the same spot for Andy C, and even though we told ourselves we wouldn’t, for SASASAS too. For the first Drum & Bass Warehouse Project back in two years, it felt incredible to be back and the moral of THIS story is…
Go and watch acts you’ve never seen before!
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