Thursday, 19 March 2015

Boomtown presents MayFair Avenue

Boomtown preview

Following my recent rant about Eurovision I feel like we should focus on something positive with this post. Happily, there is something really worth getting excited about on the horizon. This Saturday sees Electric Brixton play host to a killer party: Boomtown presents MayFair Avenue.

Boomtown is more than just another music festival – it is more of an alternate reality. I grew up near the festival site in Hampshire, and it was always known in my family as ‘the place where the aliens land’, as every year the field was richly decorated with crop-circles. Maybe the barriers between our reality and others are thinner there, as walking through the gates is like entering a parallel universe with its own detailed history. This alternate history saw BoomTown founded and prosper, before the inevitable moral decline set in just a year after the town was founded by Mr. Nicholas Boom. In year three the town authorities embarked on a massive urban redevelopment project, giving existing areas a facelift and developing entire new city districts. MayFair Avenue was one of these districts.

 A far cry from the grime of the Old Mines or the anarchic mayhem of Downtown,  MayFair avenue is home to casinos, gentlemen’s clubs, ballrooms…  everything that might appeal to the thrill-seeking bright-young-things of glamourous society. On MayFair Avenue the realities of two great epochs of hedonism – the Jazz Age and early 21st Century – blur into one another, creating a fantastical, kaleidoscopic dreamworld inhabited at one and the same time by aristocrats and gangsters, royals and rascals. As with everywhere in Boomtown, MayFair Avenue has a distinctive soundscape, with the rasp of Sachmo’s trumpet cutting through throbbing bass lines – Vintage Remix’s natural home.

With Boomtown presents MayFair Avenue, another tear in the fabric of reality [with apologies to Sir Terry Pratchett R.I.P] opens up, allowing the denizens of that simultaneously seedy and sparkling street to appear in one of London’s coolest venues for just one night. As one might expect, only the very cream of Boomtown society will be there, both on stage and off.

Boomtown Teaser

Among the performers will be the likes of Molotov Jukebox, a long-time favourite of this blog. This six-piece band is fronted by Natalia Tena, who you may also know as the Wildling Osha in Game of Thrones, but for the evening she will be abandoning the wastes of Westeros to pound out the gypsy- and latin-influenced gypstep sound that the band’s army of fans find so irresistible.

Also on stage will be [Dunklebunt] & Secret Swing Society  – the live incarnation of pioneering electro-swing DJ/producer Mr. Dunklebunt aka Ulf Lindemann. All the way from Vienna, their sound is coming together of sounds as diverse as balkan beats, hip-hop, swing, and dub to create something that just makes you want to dance.

As the night becomes the early morning, Slamboree Soundsystem will be the ones bringing the audio-fire, and if the ‘soundsystem’ is anything like the full live show it should be pretty mindblowing. I took my fresh-off-the-boat Kiwi housemate to see them last time they played in Brixton and he enjoyed it so much that this time he is brining about 5 other antipodeans to experience the madness that is Slamboree. If you haven’t seen them perform before, it’s a but like being inside a tumbledrier that that been set alight and then placed inside a bass-speaker.

Among the DJs performing are the Rumpsteppers, who blend Balkan beats, electroswing and a heck of a lot of energy; Odjbox, who has just released the  rather lovely little mix below, and the ubiquitous DJ Chris Tofu. There’ll aslo be a set from jungle legend Deekline with his partner in crime Ed Solo. I had this remix of Dawn Penn’s No, No, No on in the office the other day and couldn’t keep still.

At the time of writing the ‘Early Bird’ tickets had sold out, but it looks like there are some tickets available. If you’re not sure about whether Boomtown is the festival for you, this event offers a perfect chance to sample some of the flavours of the festival. On the other hand, if you’re a seasoned Boomer, the evening will serve to whet the appetite that little bit more.

In addition to all the great music I mentioned above, there will be live walkabout performances, a strict 1920s dress code, a casino and… wait for it… 

wait for it... 


If that doesn’t have you heading straight for the ‘buy tickets’ page, I don’t know what will.