I was happy for an excuse to write about The Cause, one of London’s most interesting venues (soon to close forever), while considering the impact of a generation of club artists including Lotic (pictured here by photographer Eivind Hansen), Jam City, Ikonika and Ziúr. Read the full feature on Mixmag
If there was a prize for the unloveliest urban terrain in London, it would surely go to the particular circle of hell around Tottenham Hale retail park. This ‘park’ is, of course, a flat square mile of white-lined tarmac and big box outlets containing all your favourite high street fillers: Wilko, Card Factory, Greggs. Because you can’t see it properly from the road, a huge totem pole showing all the store logos has been erected by the roundabout. Next to that there’s the train station and bus terminus, and a half-built Premier Inn encircled by hundreds of red and white plastic barricades. Beyond are several blocks of plasticky newbuild flats, ready to serve the needs of the retail park. Regeneration! It’s bracing stuff.
Walk even further and you come to a patch that doesn’t seem to be designed for anything or anyone. Grow is one of two clubs here, occupying the same scruffy warehouse as The Cause. Both look as if they’ve been cobbled together from debris off the nearby building sites, although Grow has a greenhouse theme, with sheets of translucent plastic creating an indoor/outdoor smoking area.
This urban dystopia is the ideal spot for Total Recall 2020, the first party of the year from club crew New Scenery. Jasper Jarvis, Marnie and SOW have been running the night since 2017 as a platform for women, LGBTQ+ and non-binary DJs. “We wanted to create a space where we weren’t a token, that was for us,” says SOW, whose experience working in clubs opened her eyes to the level of harassment faced by women and queer people.