E1 is the new kid on the block, and it started with bang on New Year’s Eve. Formerly known as Studio Spaces and located in Wapping, the venue put on a 27-hour rave marathon to get its new life underway.
The place itself is a raw industrial space with steel beams, girders and plenty of concrete on show. Perfect, then, for techno, especially when you learn that the place has had a fantastic new system specially designed for it, with the rest of the club improved and adjusted to make it sound as good as possible.
And it does sound good: as soon as we arrive, it’s obvious this system has been a hefty investment, but one totally worth it. Every drum is rich and rubbery, every hi-hat is crystal clear and cuts through the room. Putting it through its paces to start with is Courtesy, the new star on the scene who flails through more percussive sounds, drum lead grooves and wild synths.
The crowd is a mix of all sorts of people, some fresh faced and some clearly battled hardened ravers. They are happy to go hard all night long and the place stays bumping until well into the next day. People woop and cheer the break downs, and twist faces and pump fist when the big moments arrive.
Another key addition to this club is a vastly improved air conditioning system that keeps us all ice cool throughout, allowing you to go longer than you might if it were too hot. Avalon Emerson is another standout from the marathon, and she goes from weird to wild and back again with a taught sense of energy, always keeping the atmosphere intense.
Closing things out is Blawan, the Barnsley born artist who has become a big deal thanks to his bold and brave, abrasive and textured techno concoctions. He serves up plenty at E1 and keeps the floor vibing throughout. This was a great way top kick off what is sure to be an essential new club on the London scene.