This exhaustive insider survey of UK storage music – whose demise has been tremendously exaggerated – leaves you feeling like some wrung-out Ayia Napa afterparty casualty. It isn’t too nice at clearly delineating the scene’s origins (briefly: up-tempo variations of Paradise Storage-style home, therefore the identify, dovetailing with British jungle), and provides an excessive amount of airtime to seminal membership evening Storage Nation, presumably as a result of its former promoter Terry Stone co-directed this movie. However, calling on an A-Z of exponents – from Pied Piper and MC Neat to roughly 13% of So Stable Crew – it provides a wry rewind to late 90s extravagance and hand-wringing consternation in regards to the style’s future.
The movie meanders by way of UK storage’s early days, a “wild west” with promoters corresponding to Stone working free within the period’s extra laissez-faire clubland to street check MCs and dubplates of potential new bangers. The storage sound was extra lacquered and luxuriating than jungle, bringing in additional feminine clubbers, and the type 100% aspirational. The documentary works greatest within the extra structured segments cringing on the style of the period (suppose palm tree-print Moschino T-shirts and pinstripe trousers) and the surplus. By the early 00s, when UK storage was decamping en masse for summer season rec in shellshocked Cyprus, it was getting out of hand. Perennial afterparty venue Insomnia apparently had a secret room with a four-poster mattress and, for some motive, a monkey; So Stable’s Lisa Maffia confides that the scent of sambuca hits her sick set off to today.
Famously, Ayia Napa turned fairly violent, too, with So Stable’s MC Harvey and the rising star of UK storage’s successor grime Dizzee Rascal struggling knife assaults in successive years. It’s a thriller why storage was so blase about violence, particularly when the music didn’t draw thematically from it as a lot as grime. (The movie, flunking its sociology and historical past, doesn’t actually observe this up.) A storage revival is now underneath means, though in a sanitised, nostalgic type that survives principally at specialist festivals. Because the pensive DJ Majestic factors out, it’s reduce off from the grassroots that has given grime and drum’n’bass longer legs. All the identical, this can be a messy salute to the evolutionary capacities and vitality of British digital music.