It’s almost upon us. Not long to go now until the imaginary countdown begins. A few more dances, a few more after-hours slices of pizza from Voodoo Rays, and before we know it, one of the capital’s most beloved venues will shut its doors for good. Dance Tunnel fast became a refuge for looking for something simple in concept, but sadly hard to find in an oversaturated nightlife scene like London’s. Is good music over a decent soundsystem, at a reasonable volume and nice people to dance with really too much to ask for? Unfortunately, equipped-for-purpose spaces that facilitate such an environment are becoming few and far between; Dance Tunnel being the latest casualty in a battle to protect London’s clubs and live music venues from an increasingly oppressive licensing climate.
With a capacity of 220 and a custom sound system, the East London venue was tailor made for a proper knees up. The programming hasn’t been bad either. In fact, it’s virtually unrivalled since they opened doors in 2012 and Way Back Here have been responsible for some of their finest bookings in that time. Moving between various venues since its inception, WBH eventually found a home in Dance Tunnel and they haven’t looked back since.
Previous guests include Rezzett, MGUN, Maurice Fulton, Low Jack, Maximillion Dunbar and DJ TLR to name a few, so you know we’ll be counting the days until the NTS regulars find a new home. That said, it’s going to be a tough task to fill this tunnel-shaped void left below ground level at 95 Kingsland Road. With the impending arrival of that final dance, we asked the lads to pick a few tracks that define their stay at DT. Cue the nostalgia for those of us lucky enough to have witnessed some of these moments;
Huerco S. and DJ-Set play Way Back Here at Dance Tunnel on June 24th – buy tickets here.
Leon Vynehall all night long – We’d wanted to book Thom for ages but could never quite line things up. The opportunity arose for him to play all night in support of his Music for the Uninvited EP. He played such a variety that night and took us through all the gears. The EP still stands out for us and this one went down a treat.
Cloudface live – David knows a thing or two about analogue equipment that’s for sure. His live set sounded incredible through the system at Dance Tunnel. Really unforgettable stuff from a great bloke.
This one went off when Murat dropped it. Great track from a great pair. Like pretty much all the DJ’s we have booked Murat was an absolute gentleman, amazing DJ and he saves lives as a surgeon by day!
Can’t remember who played this first but this one’s been dropped by a few guests and is always in [resident DJ] Luke’s bag. Originally out in 1987 but had a repress a while back. Solid.
Very fond memories of warming up the club and system with this one. Always takes me back to the start of the night when it’s just us and the bar staff, the room slowly filling with haze.
Bake played this one when we had him down alongside Hashman Deejay and DJ Guy. Was right in the middle of summer last year and the basement was a proper sweatbox. We also did a little outdoor warm-up party on the Oval Space terrace with Hashman. Such great memories of that one. P.S. go check DJ Guy’s new release on Organic Analogue… Serious!
This one from Marco Bernadi came out on one of our favourite new labels, Berceuse Heroique. Great atmosphere on this one and has always gone down well in the Tunnel. Works perfectly for the warm-up and really helps build the mood.
8. Love Committee – Just as long as I got you (White Label Mix)
Haven’t been able to track this one down online but it’s a serious edit that has done some damage for us in the club. It was a white label out a while back and didn’t leave the bag for a while. Slow burner with a big vocal that always hits the spot.