Bloody hell, that was a long week. Snow, freezing weather, a sore back and an increasingly unpleasant working environment all added up to big, fat bulb of bastardry. I’m not the only one; I expect the one thing most of us have in common, regardless of who we are, what we are and where we are, is for the weekend to roll into view once again.
Weekends don’t carry the same promise that they used to for me. They’re not lessened in any way, but they have a different use, a different meaning now. I don’t spend my Friday or Saturday nights in clubs anymore – you hit a certain age, I think, and the attraction to darkness, dry ice, and weirdly sticky carpets drops off. I still go out – sometimes – I just have to choose my battles with more care than I once did. In actual fact this isn’t a major hardship. Yeah, I miss stuff I expect I would have loved, but I enjoy the occasions I do make a lot more, especially if the team are out in force (itself a rarity these days.)
I also think differently about how other people go about their weekends. Partly this change in thinking is down to being less up my own arse about how people who aren’t me choose to spend their own time. I hopefully understand what folks want from the Friday night in a way I never appreciated until I worked every hour of the week. Where I would have once lamented people choosing to throw money at some big name DJ playing in a colossal venue, I get that need now. I’ve heard people being slagged off for wanting to go and see big timers like Carl Cox, and being criticized because they don’t want to spend the few hours of freedom listening to the unlistenable, by attending some show of grinding noise that believes its own sense of self-importance elevates it above everyone else’s tastes.
The fact is that for most people Friday night isn’t about educating themselves musically. It’s about getting messy and having a laugh. It’s about having a few drinks, a dance and – hopefully -copping off with someone. It’s a method of dealing with the torrent of shit they put themselves through every week, and when they go out to a club, they don’t necessarily want to focus on musical sophistication, they want a sure thing, a safe pair of hands who will soundtrack a few hours of escapism. I suspect this is what those of us who are obsessive about the music tend forget all too easily, even when it’s probably what we ourselves need to do more often.
I’m not sure who Ttrax is. I think it’s mostly Tommy ‘Tom Tom’ Hamilton from Aux 88 but I can’t be positive. I’ve looked high and low but this is the only Ttrax tune I’ve ever been able to find, which is a real shame because it’s a gem. It comes from the very overlooked Technobass: The Mission compilation which was released on Direct Beat back in 1998. It’s a great compendium of that particular form of electro which blasted out of Detroit in the mid 90s and featured tunes from Electric Soul, Alien FM, and Aux 88 themselves amongst others. But as great as all the other trax are, Weekend is the real standout. It doesn’t sound like anything else to have ever come under the technobass umbrella. Instead it rides out as a superheated blast of mutant funk, melting your bad mood away with its sultry groove and an absolutely on point vocal from Courtney that just utterly perfectly sums up that feeling we all have whether we admit to it or not. In its own way, this is electro-house the way the idea of electro-house should be: hard yet graceful, and totally alive. It’s a shame that this was the only Ttrax track. I’d love to hear more jams like this.
It’s Friday night. It’s the weekend. Where’s the party at?