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It is your music, madam, of the house. William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice V i 98, Nerissa to Portia
I leant upon a high crack’d ledge
When sulky summer was concrete-grey
And heard the break of house music
I knew t’was here to stay. esias, House, 2011
[cf. Hardy’s A Darkling Thrush
I leant upon a coppice gate
When Frost was spectre-grey,
And Winter's dregs made desolate
The weakening eye of day.]
What in the Hell is that noise? What noise? That horrible putrid drivelling racket ... House music? There’ll be no house music in this house! Rab C Nesbitt s5e5: Racket, BBC 1996
Clubbing is the most significant British cultural export over the last thirty years. Idris Elba’s How Clubbing Changed the World, Channel 4 2012
The beats may have been born in America but modern club culture as we know it is definitely British. ibid.
House music is most easily recognized by the character and presence of its pulse, which is pronounced by an electronically realized kick drum. This concept is known as four-on-the-floor and is borrowed from disco music, house’s precursor. That pulse, seemingly ever-present and ever-constant, actually fluctuates, often in minute increments within a range from 115-130 BPM. It represents the stable order, the structure against which individual freedom can be asserted. Kai Fikentscher, Feel the Groove: An Examination of the Interaction Between House Music DJs and Dancers
From my particular end of it, it’s like church. Because, when you’ve got three thousand people in front of you, that’s three thousand different personalities. And when those three thousand personalities become one personality, it’s the most amazing thing. DJ Frankie Knuckles
I wanted to capture the excitement of house music, almost like a four-four beat, and the best way to do that was to use a language that was rhythmic and performative. Irving Welsh
One of the biggest revolutions was not political but musical [House]. By the end of the millennium it would take over the world. The 90s: The Decade That Connected Us s1e6: The Countdown, National Geographic 2014
Saturday night in south London: hundreds of young people are gathering for the latest craze: an acid house party in a disused warehouse. A Trip Around Acid House, ITV 1988
Acid house music has been described as a sinister and evil cult which encourages young people to take drugs. ibid.
The police step up their campaign against acid house parties. ibid.
In the 1980s abandoned warehouses were places of broken dreams. Monuments of decay, sweat and toil. We brought life into these buildings that had never been experienced in these spaces before. Light, colour, joy, unity and excitement. This is a story about British clubbing history. The Agony & The Ecstasy I: A Perfect Storm, Sky Arts 2017
The real story is about music and dance. ibid.
‘You’ve got to come from this country to understand what rave culture is.’ ibid. Goldie
They call it acid house. Acid. The name suited the weird disruptive effect of the music which compelled people to dance. ibid.
‘We found an island that really represented rave culture. Basically, it was freedom.’ ibid. Paul Oakenfold
No words could describe that euphoria, that sense of belonging, that possibility. ibid.
The cultural seeds that were sown in the late ’80s rooted for me in early ’90s; my memories of the era are like a filtered photograph that eludes the truthful picture. The Agony and the Ecstasy II: The People vs The Establishment
‘We really felt that we were against the system; we really believed in ourselves.’ ibid. Paul Oakenfold
‘The whole rave scene was a massive rebellion against the authorities.’ ibid. D J Slipmatt
One of the longest and most expensive cases in British legal history at the time, lasting four months … All thirteen of the Spiral Tribe members were acquitted along with a woman who sold pancakes and a man who ran a cycle-powered gyroscope. ibid.
Today DJs are superstars … They shape pop culture … They have more followers than presidents. The Agony and the Ecstasy III: Rave to Riches, Paul Oakenfold
The rave scene in the United Kingdom – that’s when everything changed. ibid.
There was almost something religious about the whole thing. ibid.
Dance music became accessible, universal and international. ibid.
Inner City: Good Life; Expansions: Move Your Body; N-Joi: Anthem; Happy Mondays: Step On; MARRS: Pump Up the Volume; Bizarre Inc: Playing with Knives; A Guy Called Gerald: Voodoo Ray; Joe Smooth: Promised Land; FSOL: Papua New Guinea; SL2: On a Ragga Tip; Lil Louis: French Kiss; The Prodigy: Out of Space; LFO: LFO; Alison Limerick: Where Love Lives; Jungle Brothers: I’ll House You; Moby: Go; D-Mob: We Call It Acieed; Liquid: Sweet Harmony; Orbital: Chime; The Source: You Got the Love. The Agony & The Ecstasy IV: The After-Party Playlist, Dave Pearce
We’re all fucked up in our own way, y’know, but we’re all doing it together. We’re freestylin’ on the buckle wheel of life, trapped in a world of internal dialogue. Like Bill Hicks said: ‘It’s an insane world, but I’m proud to be part of it.’ Human Traffic 1999 starring John Simm & Lorraine Pilkington & Shaun Parkes & Danny Dyer & Nicola Reynolds & Andrew Lincoln & Dean Davies & Richard Coyle et al, director Justin Kerrigan
There is a music that has soundtracked our era. It has many forms but one beat: ‘Gotta have house music all night long.’ Whether you find your groove in house, techno or electronic dance music, our hedonistic escape into the night has become a priceless commodity. The bedrock of a business worth billions. How Dance Music Conquered the World I: The Beat, BBC 2018
It started on a few dancefloors with a few pioneers. ibid.
To make the dance music we love, technologies have been conquered. To create the sound of the future. ibid.
‘It’s the dominant genre on the planet.’ ibid.
The sound has transformed the lives of countless clubbers and left millions lost in music. ibid.
It all started with a beat: four to the floor. ibid.
Two gifted DJs in two inspirational clubs sparked something special. ibid.
‘Their spirit is feeling something to a higher power.’ ibid. Chicago DJ
To this day, the breathtaking innovation of techno’s pioneers has made Chicago a place of pilgrimage for generations of electronic artists. ibid.
In 1986 Pete Tong put together the album that introduced Chicago house to British music fans. ibid.
UK No. 1: Steve Hurley, Jack Your Body. ibid.
Britain had welcomed house and techno with open arms and they quickly warmed to the next boundary-pushing dance genre from Chicago – acid house. ibid.
The 4/4 beat behind house and techno was now being successfully recreated by British artists. ibid.
Millions of us have spent the biggest and best nights of our life clubbing. How Dance Music Conquered the World II: The Club
Narcotically charged hedonism grabbed the headlines. ibid.
Hacienda: Manchester now the had the most avant-garde nightclub in the world. ibid.
A sudden proliferation of ecstasy pills was an undeniable vital part. ibid.
These fields of Albion offered an escape. ibid.
Clubbing needed to change. To scale up and smarten up. A new generation of entrepreneurs was emerging. ibid.
In Cream, Liverpool now boasted the biggest club in Europe. ibid.
The superclubs had arrived in Britain’s cities. For the next evolution in the club scene came on the very island that had inspired our dance music culture – Ibiza. ibid.
We’re now in the era of electronic dance music – EDM. ibid.