Soul Out @ Barca Manchester Saturday 24th May 2008
Review - T2 Bad
Another Bank Holiday has come and passed along with another Soul Out party. A question was posed to me a fortnight ago which was; “When was the last time there was a good Soul Out Wadey night?” which I honestly couldn’t answer. Well I’m happy to say that if that question was posed to me today, I could now answer the latest one!
Soul Out was back on form this Bank Holiday weekend and not a moment too soon!!! My last review of Soul Out raised a few major points which I thought Soul Out’s main man Wadey needed to address and to his credit, he has begun the process of putting some of the points raised by the Manchester Soul Masses into action.
This is truly commendable because it shows that Wadey is one of those rare promoters who takes fair criticism constructively and acts upon it which bodes well for the Mancunian Soul scene.
When I arrived at Barca, Room 1 where the 80’s Soul was being played was sparsely populated which was worrying from a clubbers point of view, so I quickly passed into Room 2 which was hosted by Tiny G and it was packed and rocking!!! Hustler Ghetto Hart, the former UK Sound Clash Champions were kicking the ballistics with a party-style Bashment selection. The crowd were certainly in a party mood and were showing their appreciation of the DJ’s by singing and swaying along in massed unison!!!
Tiny G, the main man at Soul Nation whilst it was on air, was sat beside the DJ equipment looking a little drunk and dejected so I offered him a drink to raise his spirits which he declined. I couldn’t figure out why my good mate was so down seeing as the room he was hosting was certainly hitting the sweet spot, but I thought to myself that if there were something seriously up, he would tell me in his own good time.
At this point the room started to empty and Room One started to fill, so I followed the crowd to see what Alex Badass had in store for us and he certainly didn’t disappoint!! I had a feeling that after the Soul Out M2 debacle a few weeks earlier, that Alex had something to prove and he executed the kind of set that Soul Out has built its long-standing reputation on. He played an exemplary set which consisted of Quality Soul, 80’s Classics and Rare Grooves.
It was the Rare Groove set which I loved in particular especially when my childhood friend Earl G commented that Alex was in need of a good record cleaner!! The crackles and scratches in the track being played were almost as loud as the near bass-less music, but I reasoned to Earl that at least it showed that Alex has been employed as a DJ on a regular basis over the years and if you judge a tradesman on how used the tools of his trade are, then Alex has certainly used his tools to full effect (I’m talking vinyl here)!!!! One thing that always worries me is when you see DJ’s pulling out 30 year old records that are still in their plastic sleeves and in pristine condition as it shows they probably haven’t played out that often!!!
Having said that, if you saw the State of Soul Control’s 40 odd thousand records and albums, we should never be let near vinyl again because most of ours records are absolutely battered and some are just about playable!!! DJ Case certainly takes no prisoners or has any mercy when he’s in scratch and mix mode!!!!
If I had a negative point about Soul Out it would be that I thought an extra 50-100 people wouldn’t have gone amiss, because there only seemed to be enough to make one room at a time rock. The chill out room hosted by Tom Jordan, Martin Hall and Tim Breen was its usual dry self and it’s debatable whether Wadey might just want to put a CD player in there and save on the wages!! This isn’t meant to be a derogatory remark at the DJ’s prowess, but I’ve never seen that room rock in the slightest, but I suppose just like those multiple choice phone menu’s you get when you’re trying to sort out your gas bill, I’d rather deal with a human being even if they are only going to tell me the same thing as the machine!!!
As the night was drawing to a close, I would tentatively say that Soul Out was well on the way to recovery and hopefully last Saturday was the first in a long line of good Soul Out Nights to come. Finally I went to see Tiny G to see if he’d perked up any and to my utter amazement he told me that he wasn’t down-in-the-dumps about Soul Out, but that he’d just been involved in a serious car crash whilst he was on his way to Barca and was knocked unconscious for over 5 minutes!!!
Apparently his van which had most of the equipment that was to be used that night was completely written off and that badly damaged that all the turntables and speakers etc, had flown out of the vehicle and were all over the road!!!! When Tiny showed me his misshapen head with cuts all over it and his swollen hands, I seriously couldn’t believe he wasn’t still in hospital never mind stood in a club DJing!!!! He was very unsteady on his feet and was slurring his words and although he says the hospital let him go saying he was OK, I don’t believe they would ever let anyone leave hospital in his state, because if they did, someone should be in serious trouble for doing so!!!!
But that’s Ting G for you, loyal and with a sense of duty to match, but so much so that he is a danger to himself!!! Anyway I stayed behind until 5am and helped to move all of his electrical equipment into his friend’s car. I even had to have an argument with him just so that he’d stay put in the car whilst I did the graft for him because he didn’t want to put me out, but I owe Ting G so much there was no way he was moving anything apart from himself!!!
Before he departed, I made him promise me that he was going to the hospital at the earliest opportunity, which deep down I didn’t think he’d do. This was confirmed on Sunday afternoon as when I called him to see what happened at the hospital, he told me that he hadn’t got round to going yet and was still feeling rough but he’d “pass by the hospital” when he felt up to it!!! If any of you are in contact with Tiny G, please pressure him into doing the right thing, because he can’t be too careful especially at his age!!!!
Soul Control Verdict:
Soul Out was back on form and long may it continue. Wadey seemed his old self and now knows what he has to do to keep everything on track. The rating that I’ve given isn’t so much to do with how good the night itself was, it is more to do with the vast improvement on the recent Soul Out offerings, so on that cautious basis I’ve given the latest event a very decent thumbs up!!!
Soul Control Rating: