Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Back of the Q – The Sets and Rises of Messer Beautifuck

A big red lobster scuttled south from the Sun and merged with my skin, ouch! I did not expect this to happen in a Manor House garden, especially not when I was sipping Stella getting my cheap drink on. Once again last night’s antics hung over me. I had sex in a K-Hole. It was weird being in more than one intense hole simultaneously, a crisis of cockfidence had descended and beer was the only leveller. So drunk and cock sure I headed once again towards the eastern quarter where all things can happen (and do happen to me).

A drunken patwa chattering madman serenaded my 234 bus as we wound and constantly avoided near lethal crashes charging towards Kingsland Rd. I held the bus pole as a pirate would his rigging riding the high streets of East London swigging from my XXL secret agent (500ml Irn Bru laced with 500ml Glens Vodka) with a rhythm. A bass-line had already begun in my head, a preamble for the night that lay ahead.
Disembarking with a cutlass swagger I came across an ethereal looking character called Tim Hilton scoffing chips. This guy was one half of the dead head DJ’s and one tenth of the Q collective, a bunch of likeminded chaps behind the evening I was here to witness. To begin to witness this evening I thought it best to bomb a little mandy and take out a Dictaphone, what follows are the results.

Back of the Q: Q Collective interview.

Dead Head Dj’s are Tim Hilton and Coco Emanuel

What makes this night different from all the other nights I’m seeing on Kingsland Rd?
Coco: It’s run by us.

(Laughing) Alright apart from the obvious...
Coco: It’s basically run by a collective of Dj’s, emcees and V.J’s...
Tim: And graphic designers who are all coming together with different influences and ideas.

Where are you coming from?
Tim: We’re kind of cross genre
Coco: We play like a lot of classics

Garage classics?
Coco: Yeah now and again, like we’ll put on a really heavy dub-step tune then slap on a bit of Daft-punk on top of it just so people can hear. Cause Dub-step is still one of these underground genres you’ve got the big players in the scene and the tunes. You need to be in the scene to really know the tunes. So we always slap over a bit of Chemical Brothers, Basement Jaxx. Just a bit of sugar to make the tune go down.

How did this night come about? Have you done any nights previously?
Coco: This is our first night we’ve ever done really.
Tim: Well, no that’s not completely true though, I mean I’ve done two other nights, the first one is down on brick lane at the Vibe bar called Air Max, we did that a couple of times. The second one was under the Q collective as well.

Q Collective why that name?
Coco: We just wanted something that stuck out a little bit and that was a little bit niche-y.
Tim: So basically with the Q collective there’s about ten of us involved so far.
Coco: We all have our own individual contacts to book other artists.

Right I mean you sound like you’re from another part of the country Coco.
Coco: Yeah I’m from Nottingham. What we’re basically doing is we want to promote each other as well as ourselves and we thought ganging up and doing this would probably be the best way to get out there a bit more.
Tim: The plan is for us to not do just one night, but many all with different concepts but all under the same name, that means we’ll reach out to a bigger crowd.

Who are you aiming to reach then?
Coco: Well this is the thing, I mean the launch night is more of an urban night, very dub-step and grime, but we want it to be varying. Myself and Tim have DJ’d up and down the country and met many a dj and we’re hopefully gonna pull in some minimal stuff.

How did the Q Collective come about?
Tim: It actually started with me, i wanted to get out and play a lot more, and the first idea was a tour. We met Lakey at Nuke Em All and I gave him a Facebook message saying let do a tour.

So it’s between friends?
Coco: Well like we’ve met many a dj that won’t even shake your hand cause they see you as competition and that’s dark. It’s like why the fuck act like that, but we’ve also met enough people who are decent as well. We want to big these people up so we decided to gang up and hit hard.
Tim: Well me and Lakey came to the conclusion that a tour might be a bit much right now so maybe we should start running a night instead.

Do you think you come under the umbrella of the East London scene?

Tim: Yeah definitely.
Coco: Yeah I think we are definitely part of that scene
Tim: We’re residents at Calling All Tribes and we’ve been doing quite a few sets at Nuke Em All.

What’s your opinion of that scene?
Tim: It’s cool but we’ve got to be careful not to be branded under the one label. Basically I’m from Sweden and have only been here only 15 months so the scene is really exciting and I’m glad to be involved in it.

So Coco your from Derby/Nottingham why come to London?
Coco: It’s where the scene is; it’s where the gigs are and where the money is.

So there’s nothing going on in Derby then?
Coco: Yeah but like the people involved in those nights are massive twats. I hate Derby to pieces and don’t want to be part of that scene!
Tim: We’re playing there soon aren’t we?
Coco: Yeah we are playing there doing a gig for a mate at a big dub-step night they’ve got there.

What’s next then for the Q collective?
This night at the Russian bar is going to be a monthly night. But we’re also planning a warehouse party aiming for maybe three months from now. We’re also playing as the Q collective in the Rhythm Factory next September as well as a Sunday night at The Social called Quorn down Sundays.
After rushing till my skull shivered I decided that was enough Dictaphone-ing around and jittered my way inwards to the rave. It started like a book, slowly but with determination and drugs I was sure things as with books get better with time. With this realisation I relaxed and got my drink on waiting for an inevitable swelling of people. My eyes all over the place and a drink in claw I decided to check the down stairs out. A dub-step dungeon lay in wait, a hot sweaty marvellous swathe of bass and bodies, I fucking loved it. Flashbulbs lit the off key array of dancers who were a feast of fashion and poses. This room was like most the people in it off its tits!
The strange thing about this evening was the upstairs which although boasting the bigger names on the decks was a lot more sedated. The emcee cypher was something I had to resist attempting joining but was a plus point as you rarely see a circle of chatters in such close quarters. My night and addictions dragged me outside for a drag and although the night was called back of the Q I couldn’t fucking believe I had to stand in one to smoke! When I finally did get out grasping for smoke I noticed a curious chap being a cunt to everyone who tried to get into the venue. This fucking security sucka even made one of the promoters go home and get his I.D. One word. Dickhead.

It was outside smoking when to get my mind off this dick on the door I turned Dictaphone on again and Interviewed Lakey and Shredex part of the Q collective.

Lakey & Shredex
What’s different about this night from all the other nights in East London?
Lakey: Well for me it’s the only Grime thing with grime emcee’s that’s going on really. I haven’t seen another one since straight outa Bethnal. We also have got a guest D.J every month and that’s gonna keep it fresh.
Shredex: The most different thing about the night is it’s solidifying the fusion between dubstep and grime, which isn’t happening anywhere else.
Lakey: Basically the plan behind the whole thing is every month we do one month here and one month at the Rhythm factory. Next month we’re gonna have massive dubstep Dj’s like Excision and Trolley snatcher with Revolver and me on the mic.
The night continued and so did I ending up in a manor house warehouse face down in a pillow I made of ketamine. Back of the Q was a fucking good night in an unexpected way the dub-step dungeon was an amazing find I look forward for some more heat and bass next month.

Words & Interview's - Darragh O'Meachair
Photography - Courtesy of MEGAMEGAMEGA

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