Back in the early 90’s, a teenage Andy C kick started the drum n bass label, RAM Records. Over two decades down the line, and one of the greatest drum n bass labels to exist is celebrating its 25th birthday this year in the form of the ’25 YEARS OF RAM’ tour across the country, hosting its celebrations at Machester’s very own Warehouse Project last Friday night.
Signing some of the biggest names in drum n bass, RAM records has exported drum n bass into the charts all over the world, having countless hits through the years from artists such as Andy C, Sub Focus, Chase and Status and Wilkinson finding chart success.
With the Manchester having the biggest drum n bass line up of the whole tour including Sub Focus, Wilkinson, Andy C himself and Nosia, crowds flocked into yet another sold out Warehouse Project to hear from one of the first bigger acts of the night in the main room, Sub Focus.
Opening his set with ‘Rock It’, the instantly recognisable opener sends the crowd stumbling as they barely have any room to move. The man at the centre of it all, Londonder, Nick Douwma aka Sub Focus seems to combine drum n bass, dubstep and electro seamlessly, with some similarities to Deadmau5, whilst his track ‘Tidal Wave’ steals the crowd’s reactions whilst they belt out the female vocals for the entire duration of the track.
Wilkinson follows consecutively in the main room for another one-hour set; most of his tracks heavily dominated by vocals leaving the crowds once again belting out the lyrics to their favourites. Releasing his first single on RAM records in 2010, he has certainly worked his way up the ranks on the drum n bass ladder through the years. ‘Sweet Lies’ engulfed the crowd before smash hit single, ‘Afterglow’ sent the crowd into a riot at the end of his set when the bassline dropped.
It was then time for the main man of the night, The Executioner aka Andy C to take over Warehouse Project to celebrate the success of his record label. He’s one of the most prolific names in club music and a key ambassador to underground music in the UK, so it’s understandable that his set lived up to everyone’s expectations. Pioneering the genre of drum n bass, his mixing is consistently effortless, with his tracks such as ‘Heartbeat’ and ‘Body Rock’ weaving through the set.
The audience is filled with all ages, from youngsters experiencing their first drum n bass rave to the esteemed drum n bass veterans who have followed Andy C from the start of his career.
It’s around 3am at the end of The Executioner’s set, and some of the crowds are making their way home after seeing the main set of the night. However, over in room one, the Dutch drum n bass group, Nosia, are still injecting insane levels of hype and intensity to the late night ravers.
Quarter of a century in, and it seems as though there is no stopping RAM Records. From the tear out jungle of countless seminal Andy C releases, the jitter of Nosia’s neurofunk to the heavily loaded vocal anthems from Wilkinson and Sub Focus, RAM is coming out on top every time, and it doesn’t look like it’s coming to an end any time soon.