Selective Hearing served a true techno feast to Sankeys. Packed with post-exam students, four courses of 130 heavyweights quickly set aside any lingering worries about the imminent debt, dole and a Desmond.
Rødhåd was the first big name in the Basement. Providing plenty of hands-in-the-air moments, the Berlin-resident grinned his way through a well-received set. Weaving in Recondite’s ‘Cleric’, his selection was tailored to be just the right, light side of dark for a crowd more used to house.
A disappointing Ben Klock performance followed. Lacking the energy or direction I expected, his selection failed to grip me. By the end, I felt that I had witnessed the Berghain veteran being eclipsed by that club’s newcomer who played before. An online apology for a “low flow day” may provide an explanation.
Upstairs at the more pleasant and spacious Spektrum, Ukraine’s most valuable house export Vakula took to the decks. Dropping Syclops’s rifftastic bomb ‘Where’s Jason’s K’ early in the set had the crowd grooving from the off. Playing records in a relaxed, confident manner, the better sound upstairs allowed me to get lost for a varied three hours. Renowned for an impressive catalogue of releases, his performance showed why he’s gathering an equally strong following for his DJing.
Sadly, Sankeys stopped a good night becoming a legendary one. London drinks prices, one-in-one-out for the toilets and woefully quiet sound downstairs all do their damage. Pointing towards the brawl to get to the loo, I heard an astonished foreign visitor remark “this in a superclub!” I was equally taken aback by him giving this club that label. If Sankeys wants to be mentioned in the same breath as Fabric, DC10 or any other true “superclub”, it needs to spend a lot of money on a proper soundsystem and start making its club clubber-friendly.