Creative Common, Bristol.
18th October 2013
Mr Scruff’s only Bristol appearance this year was just over a week ago when he parachuted into a big tent near the centre of the city to play records in a big tent for five hours straight.
Creative Common is one of Bristol’s newest creative hubs, one that has been developing an impressive showcase of, amongst other things, alternative circus and ballet performances and ‘club fillers’ nights such as today’s all night, five and a half hour set by Manchester’s favorite son and tea drinker, Mr Scruff. His brand of eclectic mixology and tea empire (He owns a Cafe and Tea brand) seems to be very popular this evening. The circus tent which houses the main stage in this village that makes up the Creative Common has a fantastic atmosphere inside, and even though the rain is falling outside, everyone’s spirits are high by having well stocked bars serving not only alcohol but even tea and coffee to help shake a tail feather to an excellent selection of South American and Latin beats coming from the superb sound system.
Everywhere I went throughout the evening the good vibrations flowed from sympathetic security and door staff to the main dance floor area that was jam packed to the bleachers at the back with people vibe-ing and chatting the evening away in one of the best new venues to add to the already high number of class venues this city has. (Thekla, Fleece, Louisiana, Exchange, Arnofini, Start The Bus, The Birdcage and many more).
Mr Scruff’s set was a supreme example of someone on top of their game, nailing it to a crowd who are feeling the groove and getting deep to some of the best, most timeless music from all over the world. All that matters at times like these is to keep the energy growing and changing. His mixing style is exceptionally fluid and when you consider he has been doing this for years now. Mr Scuff knows his audience and his audience know what to expect with Mr Scruff. A night of dancing and smiling to sweet melodies comes from the little man on stage, and given the surroundings and carnival atmosphere it seemed to keep the summer festival vibe alive just for one more night. (And despite the rain).
Creative Common is an exceptional undertaking for an independent, dramatic and essentially entertainment focussed venue, a truly unique space in Bristol’s landscape and considering its placement right new door to Temple Meads train station, a tempting night out for all who live within Bristol as well as beyond and with incredible nights like this on offer, it makes me feel lucky to live here.
All words by Philip Allen. More work by Philip can be found in his Louder Than War archive.