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Making quality house look a doddle

Formerly the much loved Northern Light, newly refurbished Leeds venue The Loft houses both a house music legend and one of dance music’s freshest new outfits tonight as DJ Sneak and dOP descend on four year old tWaDdLe for an exceptional showcase of the freshest, coolest beats. This is ‘The Masters of House’ Part 1.

Stepping foot into the cavernous loft space a little after midnight, the first room does seem quiet and we wonder what is amiss but little do we know what the double doors to our left are hiding…

Already booting off, residents Christian Maiden and Neil McDermott are smashing out tracks high enough in calibre to make us gaze through the smoke and see whether Sneak is already on the decks.  Pleased to discover we haven’t missed the beginning of one of our DJing hero’s sets, attention turns to the massive bar (a refreshing change from the five deep offerings most clubs serve up) and we settle into the proceedings. This being our first time in The Loft, having missed the Northern Light years, it’s fair to say that the hype is more than justified and tWaDdLe have definitely found themselves a fitting home.

The usual clued up, sharply dressed and party loving Leeds crowd are on the dance floor and the soundsystem covers all angles above. The music in this space has been considered to a tee; not only in the indisputably slick line-up, but also with the perfectly levelled bass flooding the huge, rectangular space, something that was probably no easy feat considering the ceiling height!

It could be busier, but that’s due to the size of the venue rather than the amount of people, and the crowd here are having it… People on shoulders, with one excitable lad with his top off and mid-song hugs between mates, create the kind of party atmosphere that has resulted in tWaDdLe making and maintaining its name for so many years.

As dOP descend on the evening the music stops and the ravers edge a little closer to the impressive deck/stage setup, breath bated for what they know is coming. Kicking off their set with some incredible acoustic singing from vocalist Jonathan Illel, dOP power through their slot with some of the coolest music we’ve heard in a long time. Admittedly, we’re huge fans, but this incredible showcase set-up, and unarguably interesting take on electronic music, leaves us mightily impressed. No one can contest that what these guys do is pretty special.

With dOP wrapping up their set, the time has come for the big gun(s) to come in the form of the Chicago dwelling legend that is DJ Sneak. One of our favourite things about Sneak is the complete contradiction between his huge, manly façade, and the joyous, vocal driven, happy house he beasts out in his allotted time. There’s nothing like seeing a full on legend, and massive dude, getting down to the housiest of beats, and sometime techno snobs grin their faces off to tunes the likes of MK’s legendary ‘Burning’. Sneak’s set feels like the usual party train, driving towards you with the sweetest classics, coolest new cuts and quirkiest edits on board, and as the night draws to a close we feel like we’ve witnessed something pretty special.

It’s apparent what tWaDdLe are trying to do - provide a city so flooded with exceptional, though somewhat similar club nights, with something altogether more heartfelt. They’ve clearly splashed some cash on this party (which is no mean feat in such a competitive town) but by trying to dish out something new, exciting and moving to the crowd they’ve earned serious kudos from us and we look forward to what they have up their sleeves as they continue these ‘Masters of House’ nights. Keep them peeled for the next one.

Words: Julia Jennings