27 November 2005


Had a tremendous time at the Level club last night. Plasticman was once again unbe-fucking-lievably great. This time he was using his laptop with one of those clever programs that allows you to manipulate digital files using a standard turntable, giving him the flexibility and control that can only be achieved with a proper deck but still pushing new digital innovation. After a shaky start due to problems with one of the styli, Plastic proceeded to completely melt my brain with a crucial selection of beats. Not many of his own tracks though. True, he played "Cha" and "Vio-lent" but also Wiley's "Merkle" and "Ice Cream Man" (that's the one with the bleepy sound like a bar-code reader) , Slew Dem's "Grime EP", Skream's "Request Line" (was that a brief 4x4 remix I heard in there somewhere too?!) and the classic "What" by Wonder among many others. But it's the way it all gets channeled through Plastic's consciousness that makes it so special. I haven't heard any dj who can match 'n' mash beats as precisely and spectacularly as the Plasticman. Listening to him last night, or on any of his recorded mixes, I'm often struck by that 'what the fuck is this?!' sensation - there's a blinding culture-shock newness about the best Grime that, for me, is at it's most mind-fuckingly extreme when orchestrated by the guiding hand of Plasticman. There just aren't any reference points for this sound. It's like music's just been invented all over again and, for a jaded old raver like me, that's something to be truly treasured. His confidence seems unstoppable now. State of the art, at every level.

Maximum respect to Pinch, Blazey, Joker and the various MCs providing first-class support. Zero respect for Lethal Bizzle for failing to show up. Big-up Appleblim, Wedge, Tom and the gang for reaching, plus the surprise appearance of Jamie from Vex'd, who happened to be in town on 'business'. A pleasure, each and every...

Special mention for my bloggin' colleagues Psychbloke and Kek-W for attending, although Psychbloke left early as per usual and missed all the fun - here's his brief post on the subject. Kek came up all the way from Yoevil. Although he's been writing fairly regularly about grime and dubstep, I think this was the first event he's been to and, judging by his own post, he had a great time, even if he was the oldest swinger in town (I'm a spring chicken compared to Kek - I just hope I'm as enthusiastic about new music when I get to his age!). Kek's excellent account of the evening pretty much covers everything else so I wont bother repeating it. My only slight grievence was that the PA wasn't bassy enough and far too trebley - I was getting mild tinitus, which I don't normally experience at these sort of events. Plasticman and entourage were all heading over to Noir afterwards, and I reckon Kek would've gone along as well, but it was 2am and I'd had enough so we agreed to call it a night. Great to see him again anyway, and hope he bagged a few tunes at Rooted this morning before heading back home.