What a decade it’s been for disco. The revival of that 70s sound, while never truly gone, has been pouring back into the clubs over the last ten years – and we couldn’t be happier about it. Groovy, soulful, and funky disco is a perfect soundtrack for a feel-good night. As 2019 drew to a close, 3000 ravers descended upon the hallowed London venue Printworks to boogie into the twenties.
Glitterbox has become synonymous with upbeat vibes, an inclusive dance floor and some of the best disco acts around. Recently finishing their winter residency at Ministry of Sound, Glitterbox took 2020 by storm with Melvo Baptiste, Mousse.T, The Shapeshifters, Basement Jaxx, and Simon Dunmore in control of the tunes in the former printing press.
For more info on the venue itself, production and drink prices check out our full review of Printworks here.
After Glitterbox A&R Melvo Baptiste had set the pace during his opening two hour set, up stepped one of disco’s heavyweights into the press halls DJ booth. Performing his debut at the cavernous venue, the german DJ, producer and label owner Mousse T is no stranger to a big show. With an illustrious career which began in 1989, the artist is best known for his tracks such as “Horny” which reached #2 in the UK chart, along with producing records for Michael Jackson, and Tom Jones’ “Sex Bomb” which reached #3.
His set at Printworks was littered with groove, funk and downright fun. Opening with an edit of Ninetoes’ anthem “Finder”, the infectious tune crept into the press halls, receiving a huge thumbs up from the crowd. As we moved on into the hour, Mousse T cleverly layered acapella vocals over the top of disco bombs to add some extra flavour and keep our attention locked front and centre.
With the crowd already in the palm of his hand, Mousse T still had one big trick up his sleeve. Bringing in the track’s extended build up, slowly more and more of the crowd began to recognise the beat, before an eruption of cheers boomed into the room with the entire crowd singing in unison. It was of course his very own record “Horny”. What a moment!
A classic-packed set from the former duo, now solo Simon Marlin, and quite possibly our highlight of the night with nothing but groovy tunes for the entire 2 hours. Opening with a fan favourite “Strings of Life” was an outstanding choice, leaving the entire crowd with their hands in the air, clearly setting the tone for what was to come.
With the crowd whipped into a disco frenzy, “Come On Make A Move On Me” by Joey Negro left Printworks sounding like a gigantic karaoke bar – the vocals echoing around the press halls and not one person standing still. Towards the end of the set was a live PA from Teni Tinks. The two of them took us into the New Year with The Shapeshifters classic “Lola’s Theme” – the vocals ‘I’m a different person, yeah turn my world around’ perfectly encapsulating everyone’s new years intention. Bravo, guys.
Following the energetic performance from Shapeshifters, saw us in front of a duo who need little introduction. The household double act have dominated the official charts over the decades, with tracks which have featured on TV & Film including Bend It Like Beckham, Coca Cola commercials and the theme tune to BBC’s coverage of the Euro 2004 football tournament.
The opening moments of their set took a surprising turn, with the duo opting for tech house selections – something we weren’t expecting given the event. Nevertheless, the crowd were more than pleased to hear Solardo’s remix of Marshall Jefferson’s classic “Move Your Body”.
Further in saw some of the tracks which Basement Jaxx are more commonly known for, such as the rocket-fuelled “Bingo Bango” which rang around Canada Water’s industrial playground leaving the packed out venue frantically two-stepping. Other notable tracks included Erik Hagleton’s remix of “Jump N Shout” and “Let’s Groove” by George Morel. A different to set to what we’d expected, yet still keeping the crowd glued to the dance floor.
The highly anticipated, sold-out Glitterbox perfectly captured all that is good about disco. The positive vibes, and open/accepting dance floor creates a fantastic environment to let your troubles go and just enjoy the music. Outstanding performances from Mousse.T, The Shapeshifters although we would have liked to have seen Basement Jaxx stick more to that disco/upbeat sound rather than heavier tech house. Printworks, however, made sure that all party-goers saw 2020 in style, and we can’t wait to join Glitterbox again at Printworks on March 20th. 9/10