Brixton 414 and THAT helicopter track : Memoir

How on earth did I get from my tarted up Friday nights at Bagley’s Warehouse to Sunday night at the 414 in Brixton? At one club everyone was dressed up to the max wearing hats and smiles. At the 414 it was dark and dingy and that bloke who was a thalidomide victim, but also a presenter on Channel 4, was flailing his arms around on the dance floor. If that wasn’t trippy enough I had just been given a strawberry pill which I had never had before and couldn’t imagine it to be any better or worse than what I had already taken. I was wrong. I wasn’t expecting much as I said it was Sunday night, my third night out, and I was starting to flag. I had never heard the track Helicopter before but there were rumours of its infamy. It’s ability to raise a man from the dead.


I listened as the sound of a helicopter’s blades came swirling across the sound system. It was like the scene from Apocalypse Now as Bill Kilgore shouts from the helicopter, ‘Charley Don’t Surf!’ Nobody surfed in the 414 club in Brixton. I myself could sense something big coming up through my body as my chemically induced euphoria started to trickle into my bloodstream. The whirling blades of the helicopter swooped across the claustrophobic dance floor as the rush from my strawberry pill was starting hit my cheeks. Deflation went to elation as a klaxon horn rang out across the club. All hands were in the air. Whistles and sweat flew in all directions, as we migrants from the underworld, crammed ourselves together in one last manic mayhem before the weekend would end. I’m of my trolley. The disabled presenter is of his trolley. It’s all gone pie and mash, as THAT Helicopter track blasts us all into oblivion.

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