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Review: Just Jack X Live at Robert Johnson @ Marble Factory 7/03/15

Cone Magazine review Roman Flugel

Last Saturday, resident Bristol party starters Just Jack collaborated with Frankfurt record label and nightclub Robert Johnson to host an event.

Roman Flugel would play colonel for the night, with trusty skippers Oliver Hafenbauer and Mister Saturday Night on hand to commandeer the ship. And whats more, this would be a unique event in the sense that it would be the first of its kind to be hosted in the Bristol art gallery Spike Island. 

The proposed location itself hosts an intimate warehouse style room with tunnels and an E1 studios vibe. It was to great disappointment that the event was to be moved to Marble Factory just days before the event, after a post on their official Facebook page reported licensing issues. 

But as Just Jack rightfully exclaimed; “the show must go on”. The 550 capacity Marble Factory (a venue that opened only recently) felt more like your rich mates house party. Little yellow lamps glow from a distance where girls sat on stools at a table painting glittery faces. Centre back, was a metal construction you could stand on to see what was happening down at the stage…

At the stage were three pillars decorated in green marsh and leaves that surrounded the DJ, with the Just Jack spade symbol peering through the middle. It kind of looked like an army training camp. But there were no blanks being fired, just bombs being dropped. 

Roman Flugel was playing for us, and doing a fucking great job of it too. He kicked things off with wild frenetic baselines that shook the dance floor from its heels. The cosmic energy of the room was being transformed, yet the chugging tempo and shuffling grooves prevailed. 

Things soon gathered pace, when he dropped the Breakbeat mix of Pocket Piano from KiNK’s latest EP (out last month). The crowd was really jacking by this point. 

And then came the chimes.. ‘Glock & Roll’ by Kowton dropped, and the room was getting hot!

The smoke continued to build as ‘Time Out’ by Hot Since 82 grabbed your ears by the rim and kicked rhythm down them. The floor was becoming electric and the crowd were losing their shit.

By now the room was a white sheet of smoke. Lazers pierced their way through the clouds, but nothing else could be seen. I was stood behind Roman Flugel at this point overlooking the dance floor with him. A percussion and 4×4 kickdrum were directing us, but something larger felt like it was approaching. Whistles from the crowd and cheers led us on. And then a mammouth sound thundered down on the room. A fog horn! A bass stab of Daniel Bortz’s ‘Steady Note’. The ship had arrived, and the colonel was commandeering this beast now…

The room erupted!

Mister Saturday night came in soon after to captain the ship into the early hours of the morning with another blinding set. By 6:30am it was just me and the 20 odd seasoned clubbers who didn’t have to work tomorrow, who helped bring the night to a close.

The only great shame in all this was the fact it couldn’t be hosted in Spike Island art gallery. This could have produced a truly unique event that would of left its stamp in Bristol’s clubbing history books. Bristol’s city council would really benefit from embracing the nightclub culture that makes this city so alive, and reduce the restrictions on its licensing.

Photography by Ollie Scott


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