It’s fair to say that 2016 was a bit of low point when it comes to nightlife in London so I’m not going to dig up old graves but instead focus on the positives. And one of those positives flung open its doors over the weekend. Meet Printworks – London’s newest and it’s fair to say, most talked about new venue for a good while. Formerly Europe’s largest printing presses, the space has been taken over by leading party purveyors, LWE, who have curated a series of stellar line-ups over the next few months. Highlights include Maya Jane Coles, Adam Beyer, Floating Points, Chris Liebing, Nina Kraviz, Recondite, Luciano and Hot Since 82 to name just a few.

Printworks Review Photos

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However, stepping up to the proverbial plate to open London’s newest rave cave was Loco Dice, The Martinez Brothers and Seth Troxler, who himself has been vocal in his support for dance culture, especially during Fabric’s issues towards the end of last year so it seemed only right that he was one of the first to kick things off. Leaving Canada Water, it was obvious this was going to be a very well organised, ‘professional’ affair.

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At nearly every corner between the tube station and venue, there was someone happy to guide you and by the time we arrived at the venue (shortly after 4pm) the place was pumping. We were greeted with next to no queue, a quick but thorough search from security staff and we were in. Greeted by a huge foyer in a zero frills, almost hangar style room. Drinks wise, the token system which is now a staple of all LWE events was in place which cut down the queue times and general faff for drinks massively.

1Printworks-DannyNorth-145Heading up stairs to Press Halls, which is the much bigger Room One, the place was pumping. The room itself is a vast, narrow, cavernous room covered in lights and lasers which were lowered up and down during the afternoon.

By the time we got in, it was packed especially towards the front but there was still plenty of space in the middle and back of the room. Considering 2,500 tickets were sold, it never felt cramped or overly busy. Room Two was much smaller and a welcome break from the madness in Room One.

The music? Nothing more than the best house and techno from those three underground stalwarts who seemed to be enjoying it as much as the crowd. It was hard at times to see who was playing but when the music was that good, it didn’t matter.

The bad…well, not much if anything really. There were a few grumbles about the sound which was noticeable. The sound towards the middle and the back wasn’t as loud as perhaps it could be but this issue aside, which considering it was the first event of this size and scale at a brand-new venue, can be put down to nothing more than teething problems.
Hats off again to LWE. Junction 2 was outrageously good last year and the infamous daytime parties at Tobacco Dock sell out in no time. Now with Printworks, the team appear to have done it again. It is hard to argue but they are unrivalled when it comes to big budget raves and Printworks is another perfect example.

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Bottomline, Printworks was superb. From the set-up, to the venue, to the DJs, to the rigging – it was tip top. Has it kick started London’s rave scene? Quite possibly. It’s hard to argue otherwise and it’s certainly a huge beacon of light on London’s nightlife scene which was getting pretty dark six months ago. We can’t wait to get back. If you haven’t got a ticket, get one. Quick! Oh, the good peeps at RA also live streamed the event so if you’ve got 6 hours to kill check it out below… It’s worth it…

Upcoming Events at Printworks:
18th February: Maya Jane Coles & Friends
25th February: Junction 2 In Association With Relentless & Mixmag
4th March: The Hydra Presents
5th March: Adobe
18th March: Melt Festival Presents

For more info and full Line Up details head to:
printworkslondon.co.uk

Review by Sam Keefe
Photos by Danny North & Max Miechowski

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