Chew the Fat at Ministry of Sound
Friday, 23 July 2004
11pm till 7am
Ministry of sound, 104 Gaunt St, London SE1.
It is with sincere respect that I hereby christen this gig 'The Valiant Warriors of Fat.' Why do I name it so- Simply because of the remarkable good humour with which the Fat crew attempted to guide the ignorant masses down the honourable path of breakbeat.
Having briefly attended a Chew the Fat night at The Key in Kings Cross, it was marginally difficult for me to accept the overall experience of London's finest underground breaks night being held at a venue such as Ministry Of Sound. Not to say that it shouldn't be done, just that there is some intangible sensual appeal about the gritty substance of a venue like The Key. It's just the perfect accompaniment to the music. In a sense seeing Chew the Fat at Ministry was akin to eating a slow baked, honey glazed roast dinner (the beats) whilst sipping cheap dessert wine (the venue): but I digress.
After making my way through the airport-like security out the front, I quickly made a beeline for the Baby Box before I could be swept up in the turgid samba style beats and cacophony of tans and perfume, and was disappointed to find that 10 Sui had finished her set. Having observed some complimentary press about her ability to hold a crowd without resorting to the obvious, I was well keen to see this girl in action. It was not to be.
My disappointment was rapidly dissolved by the infectious palpitations of Aussie export DJ/Producer Friendly. Now a London resident due to a fortunate incident in his family lineage, he happily delivered a cleverly crafted melange as bright and vivid as a spoonful of orange sherbet - a tidy submission of both the dark and the familiar.
Following, for me, was the outstanding surprise of the night: Evil 9. To be perfectly honest I was completely deceived by the name. I was vaguely expecting them to drop a truck load of that deplorable darker than the bowels of hell nu-skool that's getting around. You know, the kind of sound that is fast becoming to dance music what death metal is to rock 'n' roll- Well anyway, Evil 9 don't play anything like that at all. Their set consisted of an array of intensely sexy rhythms, warm, penetrating & compelling. Their set conjured up images of the driving pistons of a well oiled machine.
Then Ziggy came on, and to his credit he started out strong, but I chose to make my way slowly home. I wanted to bask in the afterglow incited by Evil 9 long into the night, and with the first shades of morning appearing their beats were still with me. I will certainly be making an effort to see them again.
All in all I have nothing but praise for this instalment of Chew the Fat, and I do thoroughly appreciate their effort to integrate the music with a mainstream market such as the crowd at Ministry Of Sound. A noble cause indeed! But personally I prefer a nice skanky little venue in which to consume my breaks fix, with a crowd that know and completely appreciate the music. Nonetheless I would certainly describe the night as a success and if this is any indication I've been feverishly scanning my inbox for news of the next Chew the Fat. Hopefully the next will feature DJ extraordinaire & Fat label co-ordinator Mr Paul Arnold. Since Paul's set at the Summafieldaze after party at Berlin Bar on the Gold Coast in January I have been eagerly awaiting an opportunity to catch him in action again. And if it's anything like that night I best start collecting superlatives so I will have enough to describe his performance.
So beloved allies in the realm of funk and madness, till next time: peace out.