I saw Horse Meat Disco for the first time in Leeds back in May. It was without doubt one of the most enjoyable experiences I’ve had in Hifi, so when they were announced for early November I was very keen to get down there for round two. Due to their last performance, and another I had the pleasure to witness at Houghton Festival, being so enjoyable my expectations were high, but I was confident they could match or even better them. After all, HMD have been staples of the queer disco scene for over a decade, and their unique style of doing things with a total of four members to the group has won them plaudits from all manner of club goers.
Descending the stairs, it was immediately apparent how busy the club was, as a varied looking and mostly pleasant crowd all ages bopped along to Peadar’s opening set. He had opened the last time they played at HiFi, and did such a good job he was rightly asked to open and close this time round as well. His set was filled with uplifting disco, and he was clearly having the time of his life in the DJ booth. You couldn’t have hoped for a more suitable warm up.
When Jim Stanton and Filthy Luka arrived to begin their set they did so to a rapturous reception. Peadar handed off to them and they started by blasting out the type of tunes that we’ve all come to expect from the kings of disco. The majority of their selections were disco, Motown and soul, like ‘The More I Get, The More I Want’ by Teddy Pendergrass and ‘Dance with you’ by Carrie Lucas. However, there were some belting house music/nu-disco entries like ‘Fabulous Boogie’ by Ziggy Phunk and a rolling, slightly trancey number in the form of ‘Over the Sky (Reverso 68 Remix) by Ajello.
The duo wound up their set with a couple of classics that were a marvel to hear out of HiFi’s sound-system, which had been tweaked to near perfection for the arrival of HMD. ‘Don’t leave me this way’ by Thelma Houston sent the crowd into a euphoric whirl of flailing limbs and grinning faces. Another highlight they served up shortly after Thelma Houston was Sheryl Lee Ralph’s ‘In The Evening’, before handing the DJ duties back to Peadar for the last hour or so. He actually did such a good job of closing that a group I was speaking to outside were actually totally unaware that Horse Meat Disco had left almost an hour before.
As hoped, Horse Meat Disco easily met my lofty expectations. If they carry on playing sets akin to that in HiFi, a club which happens to be well suited to their style, it will only cement their status as legends of dance music culture.
Photo courtesy of Horse Meat Disco
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