Gorgon City, Annie Mac, Skream, Chase & Status and more line-up for Nightvision
The series of big name club nights are set to transform Edinburgh's nighttime scene
Something exciting is about to happen in Edinburgh, and it’s not during August, and it takes place across the wee small hours. If we were talking about another capital city in Europe, this might not seem like such a significant statement but, as Nightvision organisers Derek Martin and Simon McGrath know as much as any other electronic music fans living in the capital over the past decade, the city’s club scene is a temperamental thing.
You could speculate for hours as to why – and people have, in the early hours of the morning, as the sun comes up over the austere magnificence of Edinburgh’s ragged skyline, because there really is something magical (dare we say it) about that combination of contemporary hedonism and historic grandeur. But whereas other striking cities across the continent are large enough to benefit from a steady, committed club programme, Edinburgh’s has risen and fallen along with a series of closings, with Glasgow waiting in the wings to catch those looking for more choice, and more of a buzz.
‘Not having that variety means you end up going to the same place over and over and it loses its excitement and novelty’ says McGrath, who started bass night Xplicit back in 2005. ‘There’s decent events happening if you go looking for it and plan ahead I guess, but it’s just no way near as regular as other cities,’ adds Martin, a long-time Edinburgh promoter best known for his renowned nights Progression (Wilkie House / Liquid Room) and Musika (Liquid Room). ‘There’s a band of new and long standing promoters continuing to bring cool artists to town and throw good parties, but there’s definitely a big need for much more. Hence, Nightvision.’
Launching in mid-September with a big bang of an opening weekend (Chase and Status at City on 19 Sep, followed by Nina Kraviz and DJ Sneak at Liquid Room on 20 Sep), Nightvision is a 17-date series of late night events bringing a genuinely eclectic list of over 50 artists to a spread of venues across the city – from the newly rebuilt La Belle Angele through to 3000 capacity stalwarts such as Edinburgh Corn Exchange.
With the satisfying heft of the names announced so far – think Gorgon City, Annie Mac, Hot Since 82, Skream, Bondax, Andy C – it’s almost too tempting to label this as Scotland’s answer to the Warehouse Project. But while Manchester’s now internationally renowned model is very much based around a static venue and could, arguably, be transplanted elsewhere, Nightvision’s bespoke cherry-picking of venues is a crucial part of its charm. ‘I think the majority of club promoters find the Warehouse Project inspirational,’ Martin says, ‘but this project actually grew more organically, following long term discussions between myself and Simon. We were both pretty tired of doing the same old monthly routine with Musika and Xplicit and realistically planning what would and would not work in Edinburgh on a bigger scale.’
This is a festival tailored for the city that both organisers have lived, worked and danced in, and it’s this knowledge which informs how to put on the best acts for each venue; yes, it’s something new and forward-thinking to sink their promoters’ teeth into, but it also feels like a generous gift back to a grateful city.
Nightvision, Fri 19 Sep–Wed 31 Dec, thisisourvision.com