Article first appeared in Muzik magazine 1995
RAGE: Resident Thursday night at Heaven London. Running from 1988 - 1993. House and Techno club that developed breakbeat spawning the sound of "Jungle".
Fabio on the classic Thursday night at Heaven
I remember going to Rage on its very first night in 1988 when Danny Rampling, Trevor Fung and Colin Favor played. From day one it was amazing. The amount of people Heaven got in there on a Thursday was unbelievable. I remember really wishing I could play there one day.
Then it happened. The guy who ran Rage gave me and Grooverider the guest slot upstairs, in the Star Bar. Gradually we started to create this underground vibe playing deep Chicago-type stuff whilst downstairs was more acidy. In the end, upstairs became more like a separate club with its own following.
Our chance to play downstairs came when Trevor Fung didn’t return from Los Angeles one night and we were given the early slot. After converting Trevor and Colins crowd, we got the main slot.
At its height Rage was packed to the rafters. They could have filled that place twice over. What people forget is a lot of Techno was born at Rage. We played the first R&S stuff like Joey Beltram’s Energy Flash. We got a lot of those tracks on dubplate. Rage wasn’t just this Fabio & Grooverider thing, the techno elite like Carl Craig and Kevin Saunderson were often spotted down there. Carl Cox also played there and John Digweed was our warm up DJ in the latter stages.
People went to Rage to hear new music, what Grooverider and I tried to do was mix the breaks up with Chicago house and a bit of Techno. To think we had the license to do shit like that in those days! We played “Bug in the Bassbin” at Rage, we knew that track was ahead of its time. As breakbeat began to evolve out of Techno, the word “Jungle” was coined at Rage. “Jungle” originally meant Nu-Groove and Strictly Rhythm because of their percussive element. When breakbeat got percussive, the word switched from the Strictly thing to breakbeat. We used to play this track down there which had a sample with the word “Jungle” in it. Every time we played the track, the place would go crazy, with everybody screaming “Jungle”. That’s how it started.
When we were playing more breakbeaty stuff Rage closed. The last night was such a sad night. Even though there was a hardcore element of 400 people, including Kemistry & Storm and Goldie, it wasn’t enough to keep the Thursday night going. In the end Rage died a death because breakbeat alienated a lot of punters. It closed in 1993.
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