"In Da Club came out in 2003, not 2005!" I found myself shouting across the dance floor at around half past two this morning. Having been aboard the Hot Dub Time Machine since 1971, I thought I had finally found its downfall in the form of a hip hop inaccuracy, but did I stop dancing? Certainly not.
The club night, taking place in the Underbelly’s McEwan Hall, is on every Thursday, Friday and Saturday of the Fringe, including a final night on Sunday 25th August – a closing party that I’m sure will go off with all sorts of bangs. DJ Tom Loud is at the helm, providing dance moves, balloons, glitter bombs and plenty of vocal encouragement to whip the crowd into a frenzy.
Behind his decks are three enormous screens, displaying music video mash ups for the tracks that take us through every year from 1954 to 2013. These videos add an impressive visual element. For the first hour or so I had my back to them, but as soon as I turned around, I got a bit distracted from the bopping at hand. It was also quite noticeable when Benny Benassi’s ‘Satisfaction’ started playing and the clunk of male jaws hitting the floor briefly drowned out the music.
The only other distraction from dancing was the occasional pause for Tom to announce an ‘OVERLOAD’, with sirens blaring and all other music stopping, until we went shuddering straight into the next dancefloor belter. These helped fuel the hype, and the concept that we were actually travelling through time, space and pop, but got a bit annoying. There was a moment when he thought we were going to get ‘STUCK IN 1989’ but luckily, as instructed, we all did the Running Man dance move as much and as fast as possible to get us out of that quandary.
Our dance moves did bare relation to our musical journey and I particularly enjoyed the 90s, when we were repeatedly told by a lady on the screens (Lulu Loud) to ‘RAVE!’ However, I discovered my true niche with the 80s move known as ‘Bad Dancer’, which I found worked very well throughout all the years.
The playlist was, of course, eclectic. DJ Tom Loud was a tireless host and his enthusiasm was infectious, but none of the song choices came as a great surprise. That said, it was great to hear INXS’ 1987 hit ‘Need You Tonight’ before Professor Green got his hands on it. Tracks from The Proclaimers and Franz Ferdinand were accompanied by enormous Scottish flags. ‘Sweet Child of Mine’ was shoehorned in when we least expected it and ‘Crazy in Love’ included a fabulous live dance routine from comedian Dave Callan.
Whilst the journey’s latter years were plagued with ‘Call Me Maybe’ and ‘Gangam Style’, the likes of Macklemore & Ryan Lewis restored my faith in our present musical age. Past musical ages have proven themselves to be cheesy, dubiously dressed and magnificent. I strongly recommend a night out at Hot Dub Time Machine. It is the self-proclaimed ‘Best. Party. Ever.’ and the hottest night in town.