Disparate times: The Mish Mash collective (from left) Nick Peacock, Paul Boothe, MC Nordon and Oscar Fullon
Club promoters these days seem hell bent on aiming their efforts at a strictly delineated demographic, with everything from the wording on the flyers up aimed squarely at a particular dance culture subset. On the one hand, this is no bad thing, since it gives clubbers the chance to make an informed decision, but a club scene dominated by streamlined, ultra-specific clubs, however good they may be, can only result in a resistance to new ideas.
For the past four years, Mish Mash has been building a devoted following amongst clubbers who rate having a good time over loyalty to a particular genre. This is thanks to the fact that the club plays an eclectic selection of music, not in the debased sense of chucking a couple of breakbeat tracks into a 4/4 set. Instead DJ and promoter Oscar picks records on the basis of quality, rather than type, resulting in sets that jump from obscure reggae to classic soul via the deepest house.
On paper, this reads like an unholy mess, but thanks to collaboration with percussionists and vocal performers
Mish Mash ends up being an odd combination of the disparate and the seamless. 'With a live element added,’ explains Oscar, 'you increase the interaction with the crowd and when you're changing between different styles of music, the energy stays up. Plus it gives me the freedom to play what I want, which means that no two nights are ever the same for the crowd.‘
In addition to utilising Ian Whitelaw's percussive skills, and the reggae/ragga vocalising courtesy of Divin, Paul Booth and Nordin, Mish Mash eschews the usual club space, operating instead out of a spartan function room. ’I think what we do is more suited to places,’ says Oscar, 'where you can treat the venue as a shell and create a vibe within that space - it just shows that if you have something good going on, you don't need a state of the art club.’ These small shifts away from the norm make Mish Mash a club worth keeping an eye out for, providing the chance to hear a broad selection of music bonded together and played, effectively, by a band which just happens to have a set of 12105 in place of more traditional instrumentation. (Jack Mottram)
Mish Mash is at The Riverside Club on Sat 29 Jan.
masterminded not by DJs, but by VJ wizards Kohoutek. The idea is that they put on an evening With a bunch of mates who include, among others, Trystero (the short film company) and a ten-piece funk band. This encompasses live music, live VJing, short films, guest DJs (so far, Felix from Sublime) and nu skool breaks from resident Dutch Schultz.
As the boys themselves admit, they're 'cobblers really,’ more interested in collaboration than competition because it allows them to offer people a far wider range of experiences. 'lt's
If the Clubland gravy train IS movmg in any definite direction at the moment it has to be towards diversification. Nights solely made up of designer drugs and superstar DJ egos are fading to make room for a much Wider range of amusements and features on offer.
» ° . 5 " ':-“-
Sourid and vision: VJ wizards Kohoutek in the mix
The explosion in Wing and visuals, the lﬂCIUSiOn of eclectic playlists and the Showmg of films mean it's increasingly pOSSlbIe to go to a club, be educated/entertaimed/exercised and get off your head, all in the same evening. Named after Ken Kesey's legendary party place in California, La Honda is a monthly night at The Bongo Club,
supposed to be more of a party than a club night. We’re not really into clubbing in the traditional sense of the word, but we do like to party.’ Kohoutek’s live video mixing in the main room, played in tandem with the nu skool breaks and beats, is made up of mainly original footage. (Violet)
La Honda at The Bongo Club, Sun 30 Jan, 70pm—3am, £4. Also Thu 77 Feb & Thu 76 Mar.
Goings on beyond the dancefloor
DEVOTEES OF THE Sub Club and its roster of high calibre nights will be disappointed to learn that plans to reopen the venue have been put back to March at the earliest, due to the fact that the buildings affected by the fire last year require further work before any refurbishments to the venue can begin.
ON A BRIGHTER note, Optimo continues to run at Planet Peach (see listings) and there are plans for the return of Subculture with Harri and Domenic as soon as a suitable temporary venue can be arranged.
LA BELLE ANGELE will be closing for refurbishment on 31 January and will open its shiny new doors on 17 February. Long overdue for a design overhaul, the club will be fitted with a new bar, comfy seating, effective lighting and — hooray! — the gents' toilets will be moved from their close proximity to the dancefloor, to join the ladies' in the corridor.
EDEN WILL BE temporarily changing its name to EZK, following a copyright clash with Glasgow club night, Eden. The Edinburgh venue will be running a competition to find a new, permanent name for the club. Details to follow soon.
CONTRARY TO INFORMATION given in last week's List, The Lizzard Lounge will not be running monthly at The Bongo Club from Saturday 29 January. They will be having a one- off Family Reunion Party on this date and will start their new fortnightly residency at the refurbished Belle Angele, on Saturday 26 February.
BOOGIE MO DYNAMO continue in the caring, sharing spirit of their double-act with Headspin, when they start their new residency at The Bongo, with a permanent room for guests, be they big names from big labels or another popular, local club. Calling it the ‘visitation room', Boogie Mo starts back on Friday 4 February and then continues monthly on Saturdays from 26 February .
Extra terrestrial goings on: Boogie Mo's new 'visitation room'
20 Jan—3 Feb 2000 THE LIST 59