Ed Gillett is a journalist and film-maker based in South London, who has written for The Guardian, Frieze, DJ Mag, The Quietus and Novara Media. His film and TV credits include Jeremy Deller’s acclaimed rave documentary Everybody in the Place: An Incomplete History of Britain 1984–1992 for BBC Four, and Four To The Floor, Channel 4’s award-winning music and factual strand. Party Lines is his first book.
From the illicit reggae blues dances and acid-rock free festivals of the 1970s, through the ecstasy-fuelled Second Summer of Love in 1988, to the increasingly corporate dance music culture of the post-Covid era, Party Lines is a groundbreaking new history of UK dance music, exploring its pivotal role in the social, political and economic shifts on which modern Britain has been built.
Taking in the Victorian moralism of the Thatcher years, the far-reaching restrictions of the Criminal Justice Act in 1994, and the resurgence of illegal raves during the Covid-19 pandemic, Party Lines charts an ongoing conflict, fought in basement clubs, abandoned warehouses and sunlit fields, between the revolutionary potential of communal sound and the reactionary impulses of the British establishment. Brought to life with stunning clarity and depth, this is social and cultural history at its most immersive, vital and shocking.
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