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Review: Why Dance 88/89 should return in 2017

Round two for Sankeys' acid house and Balearic beat revival is a must

Residencies burst into life every year in Ibiza and while some storm a debut season, others fail to score a flash of the limelight. For the most part, the clubbers who're passionately into their dirty beats like to feel that at the foundation of any party lies a solid concept that has tangibility – as if it has a heart and a soul.

Dance 88/89 at Sankeys was one that the club's owner, David Vincent, brought to the fast-paced machine that is the White Isle with a clear mission. That mission was to plunge clubbers into the explosive dance days of decades past when the Second Summer of Love roared with sounds of acid house and Balearic beats.

Sankeys' mid-week movement packed in the power with a unified gathering of dance music originators who took a stand to appear on the same soil for a running period of 19 weeks. Mixing masterminds, DJ Alfredo and Bushwacka!, were the frontmen chosen to represent as the night's residents and alongside them were the likes of Graeme Park, Mr.C, Danny Rampling, Nicky Holloway, 808 State and Terry Farley.

By all accounts it hit the spot with the island and a recent interview with Dance 88/89 regular, Mr. C, giving it a solid stamp as its debut season drew in crowds of up to 1,000 punters every week. Mr. C told me that David Vincent would be daft not to bring the party back in 2017 after its closing party last night, and we're inclined to agree. Here's why.


Dance Music Education

So much music is landing in the dance music pile and while fresh beats are classed as the stuff that's recently been spun into production, there's a whole load of weaponry from those early years that have never been unleashed on us. In among the well-known classics that sound as good today as they did nearly three decades ago, Dance 88/89 has blasted out the gems that had probably never been heard by some. Mr. C himself even said that he's only just dipped his toes in and believes that this education could storm ahead for a long time, and we've no reason to doubt his judgement.


The Line-ups

A host of veterans and pioneers who built the foundations of clubbing culture were well up for getting involved in David Vincent's vision. While some of the founding fathers – like Danny Rampling and Nicky Holloway – have passed the baton to new waves of DJs for some time now, others, like Mr. C and Todd Terry continue to have a strong presence in the industry. It was fantastic to see them get together and blast out the tracks that were the soundtrack to uniting the UK's youths in the late '80s. We can only imagine that most of the names that appeared throughout the residency's first season will be game on for round two, and we reckon there'll be booth masterminds from that era who'll be signing up for a piece of the ravey action.


A Collective Feeling

Back in the day, DJs weren't pop stars. They were appreciated and adored for sure, but the pedestal didn't have them sat tall above the crowd – they were as much a part of the party as anyone else. At a time when in clubs you'll see people more engaged in taking videos and pictures of the men and women behind the booth, we think it's high time that boundary is stripped down. We, as clubbers, should realise we're just as important in the atmosphere of the room as they are. Before the season kicked off David Vincent said, “back then, they were an element of it, the sound system was an element, the venue was an element, we were an element.” Music bonds us to our friends and strangers because music has the power to unveil our better side.


Second Surge

As Mr. C commented, Ibiza can be difficult territory when it comes to introducing a new party, and there's normally a pattern that can be traced running through residencies that make it past a first season. In the first year, everybody hears about it, but very few people will check it out for themselves, and the ones that do make it will tell their friends it's good. The second season is a different beast and those that heard about it but didn't make it will dive in - it's then the party begins to pack some punch. The third season is when it really happens so let's give it a second roll of the dice and watch the acid house and Balearic beat revival blossom.


The Tunes

We already gave a mention to the tunage that flooded the floor to the ears of seasoned ravers and a fresh flock of dance floor daters. But, here's a little sonic reminder of why Dance 88/89 must be reinstated for season 2017.


WORDS | Aimee Lawrence PHOTOGRAPHY | David Holderbach

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