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Review: Gin and Juice

After York's extended break from the 90s, Gin & Juice returned for one night only. Rory Foster reviews.

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Photo credit: Hoagy Davis-Digges
Photo credit: Hoagy Davis-Digges

Venue: Fibbers
Date: Friday 7th June, 2013

The last eighteen months have seen Fibbers go from the rarely-visited dingy sister of The Duchess to a student-run standard. Gin and Juice was one of the first nights to give the club a decent spin and were blessed with fantastic success, due to a winning formula and a lack of competition. However the night faded in the first term as house had its moment and the organisers remembered they had a degree to complete. But as the house market became saturated, a lust emerged once more for some R&B and hip-hop. And so Gin and Juice dusted off the tie-dye for one more night. We went along to see if they'd lost their edge or whether they still had something to prove.

Previously G & J had always played a relatively strict selection of 90s hip-hop and R&B tracks. This night however was a little different, with DJ Jack Luckett letting fly a larger than average stack of modern classics amongst the Dre, Snoop and Biggie. Purists may have been a bit upset not hearing tracks solely released whilst we were all in primary school, but the crowd definitely appreciated it: Kendrick Lamar, Pusha T and SBTRKT all snuck in amongst Aaliah, Wu-Tang and half the Need for Speed soundtrack; there's only a certain amount of 90s the crowd knows let alone wants to hear anyway.

Gin and Juice provided a faultlessly balanced cocktail of music which will make first-timers miss it dearly come next year

Fibbers is so well-cemented in our minds as the host to these student-run student nights nowadays that I don't really need to explain the setup here. Aside from the special offer on "gin & juice" (which the small bar promptly ran out of), this was another day in the office for fibbers, albeit one of their busiest.


Fibbers was packed with a party-ready crowd fresh out of exam season, and with that came a rather large queue to greet anyone who hadn't bought a ticket in advance. At the night's peak Fibbers was bursting and boiling; slightly underestimating the midnight rush, the small bar had one poor girl struggling under the weight of huge demand and thirsty punters. However with the night going on 'til past 3am things soon calmed themselves down, with a surprising amount of people dancing to the very end.

When people come to a night like this they're not always interested in being educated on the inner workings of the 90s hip-hop scene. They want to dress up and to dance to tunes they know and love whilst providing an alternative from the homogenous student-night a la revs - Gin and Juice provided the perfect antidote with a faultlessly balanced cocktail of music which will make those experiencing Gin and Juice for the first time miss it dearly come next year. This was what G&J always should have been. It's sad to see it come back so hard and go so fast.

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