Liverpool, on a warm but muggy Saturday in July. The 303 Lads have once again pulled out all the stops to throw their annual infamous shindig. The excitement has been building gradually for weeks on their events page, and this promises to be something special.
Arriving in the Baltic Triangle, you would be forgiven for thinking this was just another party in a now unused industrial area in another city. Oh, how wrong could I be? Some of the friendliest security greeted us upon arrival. The choice of constellations as a venue was indeed a smart move, with not only an outside courtyard and an indoor warehouse space, but a very pleasant foyer with a very well stocked bar. A space to meet friends and have a drink to start the day. Sounds from Kenny Muir in the courtyard bubbling through, ensuring a quick entry to the main outdoor courtyard. Another bar with a great outdoor space greeted us. A fantastic 3-hour warm-up set followed as the crowd enjoyed the melodic, thumping ebb and flow of a great set in the sun.
Come 5 pm and enter the king of Spain himself, Mr Henry Saiz. His set began with his usual progressive melodies, but this very knowing crowd of discerning clubbers were in for a night of wondrous sounds as his set moved up through the gears quickly, absolutely rocking the place for a full 7 hour extended set. Saiz chooses his extended sets very carefully and the energy between DJ and crowd was tangible at the least, as he took us on a journey that can only be described as spiritual. One of the finest sets I’ve heard in a very long time. Smiley faces aplenty throughout the day and night. An electric atmosphere. This was as promised, turning out to be something very special indeed.
9 pm and the indoor warehouse space opened with MaxQuerade playing a back to back set with Paddy Hooley. An eclectic mix of electro house, with a throwback to an almost older school breaks vibe, was a pleasant surprise to the evening and the crowd lapped it up as the lads slipped seamlessly between genres, playing tracks they obviously loved and the party faithful followed suit. Day now turned into night and the party got moving again. These two are more than worth checking out if you haven’t done so already.
Midnight and the party outdoors draws to a close, with a rapturous cacophony of appreciation from these adoring clubbers. Having spoken to many throughout the day, this lot know their stuff and boy did Saiz know he had put on a show from the feedback from the crowd.
Meanwhile, in the warehouse space, Stuart Hodson and Samuel Lamont started a back to back set which was set to close the summer party in style, but hold on a minute, what’s this? 20 minutes into their set enter stage left none other than Mr Henry Saiz who after an epic 7 hour set outdoors wanted to (yep you read that right) wanted to play again indoors for a packed out warehouse. Fantastic. Absolutely fantastic. After another full hour, he hands the reigns back to Hodson and Lamont, who just take us up another level if this was possible, and boy was it. Deep, edgy proggy loveliness of the finest calibre, no wonder these boys have been given the Silo at Creamfields on the Saturday. 3 am arrived, and as the lights go up, you can just see on the faces of this crowd what you have just been witness to. One of the best parties of many a year. And yep it just goes to show, Saiz does indeed matter. Roll on 2019. Same time again next year!
Photo Credit – Nick Mizen