24 Hour Garage Girls - Girls Like Us Tour Launch Party
We at Maneki can really feel progression coming along in the underground music scene, recently we got to be a part of it when we were given the honour of joining 24 Hour Garage Girls at the famous Dalston Roofpark for the beginning of their new ‘Girls Like Us’ tour. This new project being undertaken by Shosh and the gang is going to be a travelling showcase of all of the best females in the UK underground music scene at the moment.
Needless to say, we were treated to an all-star cast of talented female musicians on the opening night too!
Both profound and great to listen to. The music on offer on the night was sensational. The warm summer's evening seemed all the more hotter thanks to the fire rhythms we got to hear that evening. The evening began with an exceptional warm-up set from Kamino, who played a selection of UK funky bangers the likes of which I don’t get to hear beyond carnival as a D&B purist. He set the tone, got the vibe going and ensured the crowd were charging their drinks and strutting their stuff long before the sun dipped below the London skyline.
He was followed up by L U C Y, a mysterious mask-wearing master of the wheels of steel whom I had yet to hear from, but whom I was led to believe was in high demand at the moment. After listening to her play and then doing a quick Google search it became immediately apparent. Her set offered up diversity in spades, taking listeners for a gritty musical journey that traversed the plains of Breaks, the dungeons of Deep Medi and elements of future Garage too. Despite the mask over her face, she’s making her voice heard in the scene ...expect more soon.
After L U C Y descended from the booth, we were hit with a segment totally removed from what we really see regularly at Maneki when upcoming Grime star Lady Ice took centre stage. She gave an electric performance, with Shosh backing her up on the decks behind, that perfectly showcased her lyrical skill as one of Manchester’s most sought after mic champions. Her high energy bouncy, empowered style was a breath of fresh air in a rap scene that is very masculine despite going from strength to strength in recent years. She came with something totally unique, engaged with the crowd like a 5* performer and got the ravers pumped and perfectly prepared for the nights headliner.
With the terrace bouncing, Shosh swapped Lady Ice for her entourage of dancing women to form 24 Hour Garage girls. We had seen them in videos from Boomtown (please don’t talk about Boomtown I am not going this year and it makes me want to cry) and had, in fact, spoke to Shosh before in an interview you can read here but nothing could have prepared us for the energy they bring. Shosh was a demon on the decks, serving up a sweet blend of Garage and Bassline that could have you swaying eyes closed one minute, and jumping for the stratosphere with a gunfinger in the air the next. All the while the Garage Girls caused mayhem in the crowd, throwing around inflatables, dancing crazily and filling the room with balloons. People often forget that raves are about having fun, and 24 Hour Garage Girls bring the fun arguably better than anyone else in the game.
The last set of the night went to a girl who demands no introduction in the Drum & Bass scene. From her own show on Kiss FM, to packed out shows all over the UK and beyond, Mollie Collins and her signature high octane Jump Up vibe is a personal favourite of ours. With the crowd still reeling from the set before, she addressed us and then proceeded to absolutely shred it. Her pulse-raising set didn't let up from start to finish, demanding all of my remaining energy and assuring the cab home over public transport. With her talents added to the lineup, I felt as though the night had painted me a perfect picture of the significance of talented women in the UK bass music scene. We know how far we have come and let's celebrate it but these incredible women will hopefully serve as a defining chapter for the brightening story of women in UK bass music culture.
The music aside, Dalston Roofpark makes for the ideal venue to enjoy a spot of early evening raving with your mates. From our arrival, there was a very laid back feeling about the place that makes it seem like the ultimate chill spot for the end of a hard week. With plenty of BBQ food and cocktails too, there was enough to enjoy besides the music! The one thing I would say about Dalston Roofpark, however, is that like many other outdoor venues in London, they have a restriction on the volume of music they can play. The DJs on the night persevered and played blinding sets regardless. Don’t expect Funktion Ones, do expect to have a great time regardless.
A perfect addition to the summer madness, we had a great time raving top side in Dalston with the biggest Queens in the game. If you are at Boomtown this weekend, make sure you check out 24 Hour Garage Girls or alternatively keep your eyes peeled for tour dates and become part of the Girls Like Us odyssey. If you are interested in listening to more inspiring female DJs, feel free also to check out our list of top 10 powerhouse female DJs here.
Written by - Oscar
Photography by - Faris