January is a time for reflection, for slowly easing your way back into working life after the carefree debauchery of the festive season.
But the team at Bugged Out Weekender view it somewhat differently. Tiring after weeks of Christmas parties? Well keep on going, indulge yourself in a massive electronic blow-out slap bang in the middle of dry January.
Running between January 15th - 17th at Butlins, the holiday camp will resound to a headline set from Armand Van Helden, alongside music from Bicep, the mighty DJ EZ, Joy Orbison, Julio Bashmore and plenty of others.
Tickets are on sale now, with Clash deciding to prep a quick guide to newcomers. So we've invited Bugged Out mainstays and guest DJs to detail some tips...
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What punters should look forward to at Bugged Out Weekender 2016...
The magic of the Bugged Out Weekender comes from having everyone involved in the event, from the ravers to the artists to the staff all in such a close proximity. The Weekender turns into a melting pot of everyone banding together to create a great atmosphere and make something special happen. Be it a B2B chalet party set between Diplo and Jackmaster, or a secret party featuring everyone from Jonas Rathsman to B.Traits all the way to an impromptu round of mini golf with SMD, Artwork, Skream and many more!
Music policy / artists that should not be missed...
The music policy for the Bugged Out Weekender has evolved from the 21 years of Bugged Out parties and events. There is a broader booking policy for the festival than the club nights, we want to feature interesting and new UK music along side acts we've worked with in the past. We always try to ensure that even with a wider booking policy for the festival, it will always be identifiable as a 'Bugged Out' line up. This year, you should definitely not be missing the eight hand back to back between Armand Van Helden, Jackmaster, Skream and Eats Everything.
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You've been part of the Bugged Out family for years, what do you think is so special about the parties?
The thing that has always made Bugged Out special for me are the people behind it. I've had a friendship with Johnno going back 15 years, I met Charlotte when she first joined. I would also say I have a real musical connection with them, more akin to the type you'd have with friends. The fact that they promote parties is a plus. I know it's a phrase that's often used, but Bugged Out has definitely got the feeling of a family.
I met Johnno back when I used go to Bugged Out when it was at fabric, it was my one big night out of the month as I used to DJ at alot of alternative/indie clubs. I remember first seeing Johnno as he's very approachable. We got into talking music and he was interested in the what I was doing with my night Trash, which was then at The End. Johnno started coming down and was really intrigued by what we were doing, so he began writing about it in his magazine Jockey Slut. This lead to my first full feature which was basically about an Indie DJ playing records at the wrong speed and experimenting outside of the box. From then on we always spoke about music whenever we met up, I mentioned to him I loved electronic music but just didn't really have the outlet to play it - at that point it got me more excited than a lot of guitar music.
I ended up at Johnno's flat once and casually started messing around on his record decks, mixing together records from his collection and I suppose he must have realised that I was half decent... I've been practising since I was 16, going around my friends house after school and using his decks to try and mix guitar music into acid house - I liked the challenge of trying to fuse things that weren't conventional fits. A few weeks later, Johnno rang me up asking if I'd play Fabric that night as David Holmes couldn't make it and they needed somebody to fill in, instead of being happy I was more annoyed that I'd miss my favourite night out of the month, even though I was playing it. Halfway through my set he came up and said "How do you feel about becoming a resident?" and that was it. It's been a great 15 years - they've stood the test of time as promoters because they've managed to move with the times and changes and always be on point.
What would you recommend for anyone visiting the weekender for the first time?
I've got a massive, massive soft spot for those old carpeted venues - I love them. Butlins, Pontins etc. They remind me of the first sort of places I started playing out and going clubbing. There is something quite nice about those venues with sticky carpets which still smell of cigarettes...
What else have we got to look forward to from you in 2016?
We have a huge amount going on for 2016, but not much I can reveal right now... Keep your eyes peeled for the Kamera EP - he's playing at Bugged Out Weekender! Daniel Avery returns with a great 12" as our 50th release
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What punters should look forward to at Bugged Out Weekender?
Punters should look forward to the shared camaraderie among ravers that only a holiday resort like Butlins can create. And raving on carpets, always a pleasure.
Best thing about Butlins?
Being able to wander around and absorb the surreal-ness of raving in a quintessentially British family friendly holiday resort. One minute you can be eating fish and chips and watching people wander through the arcade looking like something out of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas if it was set on Blackpool Pier, and the next minute you can be dancing your socks off and having an epiphany to some melodic techno. Overall the venue manages to create a real festival atmosphere, without the mud, and with proper beds to sleep in when you do finally crash.
Favourite Bugged Out Weekender experience?
Going to an after-party in one of the 'villas' hosted by Mixmag, with Jackmaster in his element playing party classics to a loving it wall to wall crowd.
Anything Dusky related we should be looking forward to in the next year?
We've got our second album coming, as well as lots of 17 Steps releases, including a various artists compilation called 'Floor To Floor' that we're really excited about.
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Bugged Out Weekender runs between January 15th - 17th.