Roomember: Progressive Classics 2000-2005 @ Room 680, Melbourne (01/08/08)
Fri 8th Aug, 2008 Event Reviewsin
Taking up Room680’s invitation to rock down memory lane and remember the finest nights and mornings of clubbing’s Halcyon era: 2000-2005, I braved a brisk, wet and windy winters night last Friday to attend Roomember. A veteran in this scene, I’ve watched it grow, develop and flourish over the past ten years into something mad but when “classics” is uttered, I’m there! So despite feeling absolutely rubbish all week and with a cold coming on, I grabbed my dancing shoes and hit Room to see just how correct the advertising had been….
Well this “pop in” turned into a 4hr dancing bonanza, where I completely forgot my aches and pains, sniffling nose, exhaustion and fully lost it out on the dancefloor! Who would have thought it was going to be one of those nights?! Something tells me Room did…
Eagerly running up Room’s entrance stairs to warm my face and body, within minutes of arrival Sam Fraser dropped ‘Free at Last’ which set the perfect proggy mood. From here on end for the next few hours, the music was nothing but classic, quality progressive tunes that left me smiling with joy for hearing them blasting out of a big system again. Underworld’s Two Months Off and Jakatta’s American Beauty got the feet moving and smiles started to show as the crowd reminisced over the tunes. It’s like everyone realised at the same time: this really is going to be a classic prog fest as promised, and hell we’re up for it! Moving tribal and deeper, Sam then dropped in the mainstream yet still delectable Layo & Bushwacka track Love Story before Sean Quinn hopped onto the decks around 1am.
“Remember when DJs were DJs? Remember when the music was relentless? Remember those breakdowns? Remember when dancing was all that mattered? Remember the goose bumps?”
Sean Quinn sure does as he delivered all this and more with his set that was classic in all sense of the word. Forget sticking to 2000-2005, this set took us way back and didn’t the crowd love it! Before he did that though, Way Out West’s Mindcircus put the breaks on, giving everyone the chance to sing along and appreciate what a beautiful track this really was… And still is. Just lush. Not long after though, he pushed it right back into overdrive, pushing the set into serious uplifting proggy territory, making it impossible to stop raising those hands in the air, close your eyes and grin like a nutter. Cue classic piano melodies, 90s style breakdowns and breakier beats. New Order’s Crystal slotted in perfectly here, followed by Placebo’s Every Me and Every You, brilliant to see how many people knew the words and were seriously getting down to it all! Sean then pulled it back with For What You Dream Of by Bedrock and squeezed in some 90s beats that really warmed my heart and got me singing “everybody’s trying… tooooo be loved!”
By the end of Sean’s set, I was in pure bliss from a couple of champagnes and his choice tune selection that gave me the perfect flashback to how great it used to be. This is what I’d been missing! After Sean, Keltec vs Steve May turned the direction into a more early Hybrid-style breaks and before I left, thankfully dropped a track that I have loved for years and that brings back so many memories, James Holden’s One for You. Epic!
Having spent the last two Friday’s at Room, the venue has grown on me however I am always fighting back the desire to hop under the curtain in the main room and see just what’s back behind there (don’t worry Room, I won’t tho!). I wonder when the curtain will be pulled back and what will be revealed!? I gotta say too, the staff are lovely at Room and the Beatles playing in the women’s toilets was a strange yet interesting touch to a venue that sits in the middle of one of Melbourne’s most unlikely night spot locations.
Thanks to Roomember, I found that feeling again. That true feeling of what dance music is all about and what attracted me to it in the first place. I heard music with real emotion and it allowed me to forget my exhaustion, my cold, my aches and pains. I danced because the music made me, nothing else. It reminded me why I was in this scene and quite simply, why I did, and continue to, love it. As I crashed into bed, I couldn’t wipe that smile off my face… I’d danced for my life and farking loved it. Why can’t every night out be like this? Dance music now is still interesting, exciting, innovative but hell, I gotta go all Human Traffic and say, it’s not like it used to be…