• Rob Day

Spin City: A Conversation with Leeds' Freshest Garage Night


Whilst events have been put on pause for the most part for now, it's not to say that the people behind Leeds' nightlife haven't found other ways to crack on with their creative endeavours regardless. This is especially the case with Spin City; a Leeds- based night with a focus upon UK Garage. Founded upon a shared love of the genre, Spin City is comprised of a passionate team of individuals who are dedicated to showcasing the best local talent in the city. We had a chat with them about what they have been doing behind the scenes since the announcement of lockdown, and what have have in stall for us in the coming months.

For people who haven’t heard of you, what's Spin City all about?

Spin City is a club night and crew showcasing the best local and up-and-coming artists from the world of UKG; 2-Step, Speed Garage and everything in between! We were inspired by the funfair aesthetic and we are all about having a good time playing bangers old and new.

How did Spin City first come to be?

We’d individually been wanting to start a night and on a night out at Wire we got chatting and realised we had a common love for UKG. It was one of those drunken chats that actually materialised. We thought there was a lack of Garage focused nights in Leeds, especially with the resurgence of the genre, we thought we could make something special. There was an element of nostalgia for the days of going to the funfair as a kid and listening to them shelling out Speed Garage on the Waltzers, so that was something we wanted to recreate.

Who are some of the key people involved?

Millennium Edit (Ste), DJ Kimura (Tom) and Tañ (Tanya)

DJ Kimura (Tom) and Tañ (Tanya)

Are there any particular venues in Leeds that have been important to you in your journey?

Mabgate Bleach has been central to the creation of the night. We were a fairly new night pre-COVID so only managed to squeeze in a couple of nights there, but it’s the perfect intimate space. It's fun as well as it’s a good opportunity to open the taps on our soundsystem.

Which labels, radio stations, or other party nights have inspired you in the creation and running of Spin City?

Too many to name! The first has to be Alex T, he was so supportive when we started the night and the way he pushed DJs he saw potential in was inspiring. His Garage Hour on Rinse is a must-listen and has a special place in our hearts. So it goes without saying that Rinse FM deserves a mention for showcasing so many incredible DJs on their Garage Hour series. There’s a brilliant Garage community and Shuffle n Swing are definitely a key part of that, we had them up North for a night late last year which was a lot of fun. In terms of labels, Prescribe the Vibe, Peaky Beats, Dansu Discs, Hokkaido Dance Club, Dimsum Records and Ec2a are all doing bits and we’re really excited to see what they have in store for the future. A special thanks as well to Skins and Soul Mass Transit System who’ve been sending us ridiculous dubs throughout lockdown!

How have you all continued to be productive and creative during this lockdown period when events are off the cards?

We’re lucky that lockdown has been pretty fun, to be honest! Probably the busiest we’ve been since starting the night. We had a monthly residency on KMAH where we were able to showcase local DJs and those further afield pushing the garage scene, sadly KMAH is closing its doors but we hope to keep going in other ways. It’s been great to connect with people now that many people have more time to spend online chatting and sharing music. A big shout out to our guests on the show so far, Norfn Gyal, Dansu Discs, Peaky, SMTS, as well as our first guest mix from up and comer R-O-V. There are loads of people recording mixes so there is plenty to listen to. Tom and Tanya did a livestream for Earful of Wax, which was fun getting to virtually play alongside people. Everyone’s production rate has been on fire during lockdown, it’s hard to keep up! Ste has a couple of tunes he made during lockdown coming out later on this year, so keep an eye out.

Millennium Edit (Ste)

Do you have anything in the pipeline for when events can begin to start taking place again?

We are doing a joint event with Northern Division down at Old Red Bus Station in September (regulation permitting) and we’re looking at doing an outdoor day party at The Fenton as we know it might be a while before we’re back in the club. There are loads of wicked DJs both locally and around the country or even abroad who we’d love to get involved in a night, so there will be no shortage for any future events.

Tell us about a musical release that you have discovered in lockdown that you would really recommend.

Tom: Tom: Instinct 10 - Pinder / 0113 / Zac Stanton / Holloway

Ste: Tom Ries - Background Download

Tanya: Wilfy D - What’s Up

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BABYSTEP MAGAZINE Est. 2017