There’s something about Fibbers: its low ceilings, dimmed lighting and small, open planned dance floor area that allows for an intense and charged atmosphere. Unlike some of York’s larger, and some might say cleaner, clubs, where the expansive space is divided up into different rooms and levels, Fibbers has a simplicity to it that works entirely to its advantage on themed nights. Its modest size makes it hard to lose your group, which means no valuable dancing time is sacrificed searching for your friends (an issue which characterises every one of my nights in Revs).
On nights like Bangers & Mash and Itchy Feet, the intimacy of the venue works so well: it intensifies the sound and adds a sense of community to the night. Dancing with strangers has never felt so natural. But it is the monthly, student-run house music of Milli Vanilli, with its brilliant mixes from DJs and continuous pounding baseline that you can feel right through your body, propelling you to dance in an almost involuntarily fashion, that creates a palpable electricity in the air.
The nights started a year ago when student Tim Perera saw an opening in York for a more student-orientated underground house night. Though there were existing house nights in the area, Milli Vanilli is aimed specifically at students, easing you in to the mixes by starting off with some disco tracks and building up as the night progresses. Harry Jones, Kit Munro and Tim Perera, The three resident DJs have been integral in building the night up to the incredibly popular and much anticipated event it now is, and are careful to keep the nights varied by bringing in an impressive array of brilliant DJs to headline. Tristan de Cunha, from the infamous Back to Basics in Leeds (apparently the longest running club night in the world) was on the decks. With such great headliners, you can seriously enjoy these nights whether you have an interest in house music or, at the other end of the spectrum (like me), just enjoy dancing like a complete lunatic in a room of no judgement.
I love that there are so many student run nights emerging on the York scene; they cater for the many disillusioned with the often repetitive music and general atmosphere of the more popular clubs or anyone who simply wants to try something new. And if you really enjoy it, why not get more involved? Tim Perera’s advice for anyone interesting in DJing is to “back yourself and go for it, but remember not to take shortcuts and put the work and practice in first!” You can really hear the enjoyment and passion the DJs have for the music when you see them live. The nearness of the booth to the dance floor allows an intimacy and intensity that you can’t experience from nightclub music. As I left, I was riding a similar adrenaline high to that I’ve previously only experienced from seeing bands live; it’s a similar rush, in a similar group atmosphere.
Living in York has its disadvantages, the main being the lack of nightlife options when compared with larger cities. Student-run nights are beginning to change that. Tim Perera offered his thoughts on this, saying “I think it will only be good for the scene here, but I think any new night has to bring something new and innovative to the table.”
“There’s little pretension, people are there for our music, to lose themselves dancing and to have a good time.”
That’s why nights like this are sold out, with people queuing at the door and staying until the music stops; they are offering something new and exciting, intense yet, in the case of Milli Vanilli, with a surprisingly relaxed atmosphere.
“The innovation of Milli Vanilli and other nights like it are giving the York club scene a much needed shake up. The house mixes and repetitive beats can really get under your skin and introduce you to a completely different genre of music: I know they have for me. If you can grab a ticket before it sells out, you really need to try an alternative and growing York night out.
Tim Perera summarised: “all are welcome on the MIlli Vanilli dance floor. There’s little pretension, people are there for our music, to lose themselves dancing and to have a good time. So if that sounds like your idea of fun, check us out”.
Were you at Milli Vs? Share your experience in the comment section below.