For the last 12 weeks of the year, Manchester holds host to a club night that has already achieved legendary status and attracts some of the biggest names on the scene. We caught one of the Warehouse Project’s latest events as the Anjunabeats crew made the journey north on Oct. 2 for a night that manages to keep a very special part dance music history well and truly alive.
The Warehouse Project started in an abandoned brewery in 2006 before moving to an underground venue deep beneath Manchester’s main railway station the following year, where it remained until 2012. After two years at an abandoned warehouse in the adjoining city of Salford, the WHP crew are back in their subterranean venue on Store Street for 2014. The Anjunabeats night itself featured two rooms–though “spaces” might be a more appropriate term–the smaller of the two playing host to the cream of Anjunadeep.
The deep room offered a smaller, more intimate crowd, the very best of deep house oozing across the vaulted ceilings. There was something of an Anjunadeep:06 showcase on offer, with Cubicolor, Lancelot, Lane 8, and of course, Jody Wisternoff himself taking to the decks. It was a perfect reminder of how Anjunadeep has taken on a life of its own over the past few years, with the room a decent night out in its own right.
The main room however was just a few darkened corners away, rammed to the rafters for Guy J, with a few hundred more cramming in as Above & Beyond took to the decks. Starting things out with a slightly deeper, darker set–perfect for the venue–they then pulled out the big guns. Highlights included some surprise classics, such as a remix of Café Del Mar and a mashup of their own Sun In Your Eyes and Tiesto’s Flight 643.
A fitting highlight came in the form of their Blue Monday remix, because it was New Order’s success that financed Factory Records and The Hacienda, the legendary Manchester venue that was right at the heart of rave culture in the late ’80s and early ’90s. The Warehouse Project shares a similar ethos to the Factory legacy–concerned with nothing but the music, a little piece of freedom and excess among the crumbling railways arches, the beat of the latest generation echoing around an abandoned display of Victorian grandeur. The late Factory boss Tony Wilson would be proud to see his beloved city still sitting at the heart of the music scene in the UK, and it’s something the Warehouse Project can be very proud of too.