Event review: Baikal @ The Roadhouse, Manchester


Stop us if you’ve heard this one before. A group of promoters make an interesting booking, their night undersells, but far exceeds many run by their less adventurous peers in terms of music quality and atmosphere.

Maeve man Baikal probably isn’t boosting Bank’s bank balance. Yet this looming figure- cast in reflected lights and set against a backdrop of The Roadhouse’s oddly cabaret-style red curtains- is doing more than enough to cement the still-young party’s reputation as a place for proper tunes. These marching orders following the likes of Fantastic Mr. Fox and Objekt, who played previous bashes hosted jointly with Mekka.

To say this instalment is all about proggyness could be misleading, depending on your understanding of the sub-genre. It takes very little time at all for us to realise the chap in charge means business, and whilst his soundtrack is a world away from the old Global Underground vibe, stylistic comparisons with more relevant names such as John Digweed come easily.

The beats are commanding, tough, immersive and varied, his approach focused on carving out a path from beginning to end complete with peaks and troughs. Even when we strip down to the raw basics of kick and hi-hats it’s part of a master plan designed to make Carl ‘Tres Demented’ Craig’s Brainfreeze seem all the more potent. Plenty to get excited about then, hence the whistles, whoops and hollers from the small but energetic crowd, it goes without saying we’d recommend both event and DJ to a friend.