By Josh Vincent, Third year, English
'The Just Jack brand has become synonymous with quality nightlife', Josh Vincent reviews Just Jack at Motion
On 2nd November, Just Jack brought a selection of the world’s most revered house and techno DJs Motion, alongside a custom laser installation. Panorama Bar resident Tama Sumo, Hessle Audio founder Ben UFO, and Detroit legend DJ Bone took control of the gargantuan main room, whilst Dekmantel favourite Nosedrip, and Salon des Amateurs residents Bufiman and Vladimir Ivkovic soundtracked the Tunnel.
Opening up the main room, Tama Sumo played with the restraint of a true veteran, coaxing the main room to near full capacity with moody, minimal house. In the hands of someone less capable, the selections could easily have fallen flat, but Sumo’s perfectly paced mixing imbued the tracks with a real sense of hypnotism, at times able to keep people moving with little more than a kick drum and garbled vocals. At a time when promoters are pressured to pack as many names as possible onto a bill, the art of the warm up set is often under-appreciated: Sumo’s set served as a bold re-assertion of its importance.
By the beginning of the peak time sets, It quickly became clear that the crowd had divided into two camps, with little movement between the rooms: as one punter remarked to me, you were either “BUFO or Bufi”. Regrettably, I was unable to see much of Bufiman or Ivkovic, but what I did see, I enjoyed immensely. Both DJs kept the BPMs very low, providing a much needed contrast to the more upbeat sounds of the main room. Favouring tracks with menacing basslines and bouncy tribal percussion, their selections provided the softly lit Tunnel with a sense of understated intimacy that is rarely found in a club as busy as Motion. As the night drew on, people began trickling out to the main room, leaving a core group of revellers to fan out across the smoky floor, and sway uninhibited to the irrepressible Salon Des Amateurs chug.
Ben UFO following on from Sumo’s broiling house sounds in the main room. Skippy house tracks like Lipelis’s “Children Song” and DJ Steaw’s “Heaven” established an easy-going groove, but they somehow felt a little stale in the context of Sumo’s deeper fare. The second hour proved much better, as UFO settled into his signature brand of hybridised UK techno, Tracks like Bruce’s monstrous “What”, and the now distinctive bleep bloop riff of Airhead’s “Droplit” were deployed to devastating effect, but the highlight of the set was undoubtedly an incredible blend that saw UFO layering the “Found Mix” of Objekt’s “Lost and Found” atop his 2012 Hessle Audio effort, “Porcupine”. The breakdown served for a truly arresting club moment. Whirrs of static erupted from the speaker rack, whilst the bespoke laser installation sent jets of yellow light pinballing around the room, eliciting audible gasps, before the clattering breaks of Overmono’s “Daisy Chain” implored the stunned punters to dance again.
Of the main room, DJ Bone was the highlight. Reworking spartan techno tools with his distinctive mixing , Bone re-energised a flagging crowd, and maintained the intensity until the lights went on. Bone has recently spoke of his desire to re-contextualise well worn techno classics in his sets, and this was no exception, cutting in the acapella to Childish Gambino’s “This Is America” atop Derrick May’s seminal “Strings of Life”. Perhaps the choice was a little on the nose, but the execution was faultless, with every fade receiving a rapturous response.
The Just Jack brand has become synonymous with quality nightlife over the last few years, and with Underground Resistance announced as headliners for the next year’s event, it doesn’t look like that will be changing any time soon.
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