Omarion Concert – The Sheridan Suite Manchester Tuesday 8th April 2008
Review - T2 Bad
I was particularly interested to see how the next instalment of Good Times Promotion’s “Alternative” Soul events would pan out especially considering the mixed response from the last Bank Holiday event in March of this year. On entering Relish I was greeted by the main man Tony Gordon who over the last 12 months has put on some spectacular, cutting edge events.
After having a brief chat with Tony I went into the main arena where the first two things to strike me were the reduced attendance and a strange atmosphere which I couldn’t quite put my finger on. Relish was full rather than packed as the previous events had been and I would estimate that there were about 250-300 people present.
Now let me elaborate on the atmosphere; the dance floor was packed as is usual at a Good Times Promotions event, but there were pockets in the venue where the vibes just didn’t seem to reach. DJ Mistri was playing a solid Rare Groove set mixed in with 80’s Classics which had the crowd generally rocking and singing along with gusto, but there were parts of the venue where the ravers were just chilling. I think this had more to do with familiarity breeding contempt as people have now become used to Relish as a venue.
I spoke to Bizzi B who was the other DJ on rotation and asked him what he thought about the night so far and he stated the same sentiments that I was thinking that the atmosphere seemed a little strange. Soul Control played weekly with Bizzi B at the legendary Club Havana night “Rush” for nearly four years and we both agreed that what we both felt about the atmosphere was one of those anomalies that happens on club nights that’s impossible to explain.
As the night progressed and settled into its groove, I noticed that there were a lot of new faces in Relish and it was they who were providing the vibes and the people who have become regular attendees of the Relish Soul nights were the ones who were proving harder to please (familiarity breeding contempt again). Many people commented that they thought the night was excellent, but many also commented that they couldn’t get into it. To sum this up, when I went to the rear of relish there were a group of friends of mine who were really going for it and singing their collective hearts out, but just behind them was another friend of mine who was laying down and practically asleep!!! Weird!!!
At about 1.30am DJ Mistri played a Reggae set which set the house alight, but in my opinion he drew this out far too long especially when he stated that he was taking us all on a trip around the globe and played a Calypso/Soca selection which thrilled some but bored others!! The bored posse might have had a point as this was supposed to be a Rare Groove night, but it was now descending into a party night!!! About 2.30am Bizzi B then took to the decks and not a moment too soon either, as it was becoming obvious that Mistri was loosing his way and was in need of a rest.
Bizzi B picked up the pace and the vibes that he provided proved infectious and had the crowd rocking once again. There were a couple of other events going on the same night which provided competition for Relish and split the crowd that Relish would otherwise expect. Also the fact that Soul Out was being held the night previously would have also had an effect. Relish closed slightly earlier than planned which was due to a water leak, but this didn’t detract from a reasonably good evening.
The next Good Times promotions event is to be held at Relish on Bank Holiday Sunday 24th August 2008 and the theme for this party is a blockbuster DJ Take Over where DJ’s Patrick Booth, Bizzi B, DJ Man Q and DJ Silva pit there wits against each other in a DJ elimination contest to see who comes out on top!!! Again this is a different spin on the usual Mancunian Soul nights and I eagerly look forward to see how this Manchester Extravaganza plays out!!! Bring your whistles to support you favourite DJ!!!!
Soul Control Verdict:
Relish provided a good if unspectacular night out. There was a big contingent of out-of-towners who’d come by organised coaches and without their attendance it would have painted an altogether different picture for the event. For the third and final time though, beware of familiarity breeding contempt!!! The Manchester Soul Masses are always complaining that all the Soul nights seem the same, but here is one that is very different and isn’t ashamed in being so. For this reason alone I’m sure that Good Times events will have a very strong and long future and will make an indelible mark on the Manchester Soul Scene!!!!
Soul Control Rating: