TSOP - Longfield Suite, Prestwich Friday 4th July 2008
Review - Neil
It had been long week, especially so because I was going on my hols on Saturday, so the week seriously dragged. I was looking forward to going out; the last time I had been out properly was DJ Case’s birthday bash which was hosted by Soul Control at Moso Moso. Me and my friend Scott walked down to the Longfield Suite as we live locally anyway and it was a very nice balmy evening.
I missed the last TSOP and by all accounts it wasn’t that good which I found hard to believe!! My friend Scott had never been before so I was eager to show him what TSOP was all about.
The two previous times that I’d been, I arrived around 11pm-ish and it had always been full. So I thought this time I’ll go earlier to see what the first DJ had in store for us.
We arrived and got our drinks in the bar which is situated in the Northern Soul arena and it was unusually quiet and the numbers were down. We then went into the Soul arena to see what was on offer. When I went through the door I thought Errrrrrr; where is everybody!!?? Had someone farted or something? There were only about 20 people in the place. I assured my friend this wasn’t the norm and it would pick up. The first DJ was playing an 80/90’s set. It was an OK mellow set and there was no need to play anything else because nobody was there!!!
Baz M came on at 10.30-ish and his set was also on the mellow side. He played some new tracks the most notable being Jennifer Hudson - Spotlight, Robin Thicke - Magic and tracks from the new Dwele album, but the attendance was still only about 30!!!! My sister arrived and her friend Lauren and they could not believe how sparse TSOP was!!!!
The next rotation took place and the DJ’s who came on after Baz M (I didn’t catch who they were) but they brought the tempo down even further!! By this stage though, the room was over half full and there were enough people present to have a good groove, but the two DJ’s didn’t do a lot for the crowd and the tempo remained downbeat. We were not even dancing and so bored and that Lauren started chatting to some Northern Soulers who were telling her that 5-6 years ago people were queuing around the block to get into the Northern Soul arena!!!!
The Soul room was at its peak now and there must have been about 80-100 people which is about 60-70 short of the norm. We were counting the minutes down for Mike Stephens to come on and save us and the night!!! Eventually he did come on and to his credit he picked things up immediately, but by this stage any sparkle that we initially had, had long since faded. Usually a few Northern Soulers come into the Soul room to strut their break-dancing stuff, but on this night they stayed where they were as there were no vibes at all. I saw T2 Bad taking a few of photos, but he spent most the night outside the Soul room in deep discussion with Chris Priestley of Seductive Soul. Wadey from Soul Out was also with them and was sporting a new hairdo – looking good son!!!
Soul Control Verdict:
The night never got going and not even the ever dependable Mike Stephens could rescue the night for us. The two main issues that affected TSOP were that the numbers were down and the mellow vibe set by the DJ’s who came on after Baz M which put us on a downer. I won’t be giving up on TSOP, but this night did nothing for their brand. They did some brilliant gigs in the 1st half of the year so don’t lose it now boys; if it ain’t broke why fix it? They really do need to pick up the pace for their next event on August 1st, the 9th Anniversary All-Niter!! I think it's just what the brand needs, although I might bring my pyjamas in August just in case we get a repeat of the July shindig!!!
Soul Control Rating: