SOUTHERN EXPOSURE/JUMP - 31st DECEMBER 94 - NEW YEARS EVE
Off to sunny Maidstone with a full car and keen anticipation of the nights festivities. I'm the driver tonight so a sober New Year for me. The car's intent on falling apart around our ears, as usual. The boot and drivers door remain locked. Managing to avoid too many arguments we arrive at the club, after having driven round the one way system only 5 times instead of the usual 10, and enter before the club's actually open. Inside with no-one in, it looks even larger than ever, so we sit down and start drinking. (Well I don't of course). We're soon joined by Tejen, Laura, Now Ey, Jodie and Jon, and the 4 of us already there start to feel much better now we have some chums to take the piss out of. Everyone proceeds to get shit-faced in that time honoured fashion. I don't of course. Well I don't drink. As it starts to fill up, everyone relaxes. Paul's and Tejens sets are beset with technical problems as they don't have a monitor, and there's no-one really to hear them so early. But they manfully play on. I sit there being a miserable bastard, but everyone seems to be having much fun, as the festivities warm up.Come 12 the place is full of kissing, smiling peeps. There are a lot of people we know here. Plus a lot of new people we meet who are all very chummy. I start to relax after the drive then before I know it, it's time to go. Hand out flyers. Climb shivering in the car (it really was bastard freezing that night) and orf to London. A very interesting drive follows. London is reached very quickly. And there are shitloads of cars on the road. All probably doing the same thing. Brixton has never looked so welcoming as now I know I can relax and get loaded as I will no longer be driving. Excellent. My spirits lift amazingly, and as we walk into the club we are hit with such a powerful combination of heat and full on, off yer face hedonism it can't but help to make you smile and want to hurl yourself through the door in a cartwheel of appreciation. Unfortunately only old age, extreme lack of physical fitness and sheer numbers of people stop me from doing it, so I stumble self-consciously in, instead. I don't know who the DJ was, but he truly was fucking excellent. (Later found out to be Jes a.k.a. Sonar). And all of us start throbbing straight away in appreciation. The crowd are going ape-shit, and the club looks and sounds spectacular. It's good to see, and feels so intimate after the sheer size of the previous club. I find a cool wall to half slump and dance against. It feels weird spending New Year with hardly any of your chums around you to help you celebrate but it's still fun. By 4 I've made it upstairs to listen to Oz's set, but I'm afraid the heat totally gets the better of me and I find myself lightweighting out and falling in a stupor before the speakers, in a half sitting, half lying position for the next few hours. It was like being in a bread oven. But it was still fun. Spotted - Timo waving his arms about wildly, and waggling his fingers at head height in perfect time to the music; the other Tim (promoter Tim) looking only slightly more moist and off it than he normally does, also propping the floor up but much more stylishly than I was managing. Tracy back from her travels to New Zealand, back that very night and shaming everyone in the room with her untrammelled energy and love of partying; Mariane wilting slightly in the heat, but still going for it non the less; Anna and Simon, our lift sharers, still stumbling around in that way one does when you're in that certain frame of mind, Pat the barsteward cum door person clearing up whilst dancing in a very professional manner; Tony the owner cranking up the volume (he'd given up his flat for the night and it was now populated by hordes of sweaty party peeps); Louise for giving me a free beer, even though I wasn't drinking, oh no, I can now, too late there's hardly any beer left anyway. Oh well. Cheers for a truly excellent night to the Jump team. The mood, atmos and music was spot on, and Oz played one of his best sets ever.Swift drive back to Kent. Swift shimmy to Chavland to wait the arrival of our other chums who'd gone to other parties. But I'm afraid, half an hour of waiting in Walt's lair with only his strange adult entertainment films for company, and an accapella tape that does everyone's head in, our heads were severely done in and we slunk off about 10 mins before everyone else turned up. Oh well, here's to the 2nd space mates.