Sankeys Ibiza is the master of delivering the unexpected; the fact that it survived its first season and returned for a second surprised many on the island. In truth, Sankeys Ibiza did much more than survive its first season; it carved a niche for itself on an island that is traditionally unforgiving to the new kid on the block. This is not any ordinary new kid on the block, this is Sankeys, world famous Manchester club brand, and coming to Ibiza was the natural evolution of a brand that has managed to transcend its roots. 2011 saw the brand win an army of new friends as it delivered more than its fair share of underground line up’s across the summer. The challenge for 2012 was to build on that momentum. As we get set for the second of the closing parties, it’s fair to say, job done!
Ibiza 2012 seen Sankeys pick up exactly where it left off, courting discerning clubbers from all over the world, not to mention all over the island. Locals, joined workers and tourists as the talent packed parties continued. Steve Lawler’s Viva Warriors made a huge impact in its debut season, packing the club every Wednesday while German producer/ DJ Solomun enjoyed a fruitful season with his Diynamic Neon Night catching the imagination of everyone and personally picking up Best Producer at the DJ Awards. One-off extravaganzas came and went, bringing with them a multitude of talent and the flagship party, Carnival, continued to go from strength to strength. In the pre-party build up, enigmatic Sankeys owner and director of fun, David Vincent, was asked why they decided to go for a closing fiesta across two nights totalling 24 hours, his reply… “After last year’s closing party we felt that twelve hours wasn’t enough. This year, we had so many DJs approach us and tell us that they wanted to play; we would never have had enough space. We counted 24 DJs and thought, well if we have 24 DJs we may as well go for 24 hours.”
Sankeys 24 is the perfect end to another amazing season and with our eyes already on the second of the parties, with Solomun and H.O.S.H. returning as well as Todd Terry delivering an acid house set, we are ready for part one. The build up for this party has an air of secrecy about it, with the posters and flyers promising three surprise guests as well as a long list of talent already confirmed. On the day itself, it emerges that Steve Lawler and Nina Kravitz are two of the surprise but the last is kept under lock and key until they take to the Basement decks at 6am for the final shift of the night. There is plenty of action to come before then, however, as the star studded line up gets to work on the packed crowd inside the venue. Tiefschwarz, Shlomi Aber, Enzo Siragusa, Matt Tolfrey, Antonio Placquadio, Alex Piccone and Luis Groove all make telling contributions to a night tests the stamina of even the most hardened clubber.
Darius Syrossian returns to the booth that has seen him enjoy numerous moments throughout the summer as part of the Viva Warriors team. Alongside Steve Lawler, they made a huge impact with the new party. Lawler himself is on great form; using four decks he effortlessly delivers a musical masterclass, applauded by Kerri Chandler in the DJ booth! The ploy of keeping the final guest a secret has worked as people are still talking about it on the dancefloor and at the bar, trying to second guess the club on who was finishing the party off. As the song says, time marches on, and before too long it was time to reveal his identity, which is met with a huge roar as house legend Danny Tenaglia makes his way into the elevated booth. The word legend is banded about far too freely these days but when it comes to Danny Tenaglia, nothing else will do. Known for his monster musical journeys – 12-hour sets are not uncommon – he takes control of the Sankeys Basement as he prepares to bring the party home. Six hours, countless twists and turns and chunky house nuggets later, he brings part one of the closing fiesta to an end. The bar area is quieter now but the dancefloor is still packed, from the front of the DJ booth right to the back of the room. Kerri Chandler joins in the applause as the Sankeys stalwarts pay homage to one of the true greats of our scene.
Leaving the air conditioned club at midday and heading out into the blazing sunshine in Playa d’en Bossa, thoughts turn to part two later tonight, but first to JDs overlooking the beach for a coffee. Sankeys closing part two sees another stack of awesome talent gathered for our entertainment and another mystery guest to ponder over. The party starts at 8pm so there’s not much time to get ourselves in shape and good to go again. I don’t know how some people can go straight through, well, of course I do but lets just say they have great stamina for the sake of argument.
The musical menu is looking particularly healthy as Todd Terry plays a special acid set in the Acid House, Sneak and Cajmere return as do Solomun and H.O.S.H. and Miguel Campbell makes another welcome addition, while there is a Wolf & lamb experience in Spektrum and a special guest in the Basement. If last night is anything to go by, things could get very interesting. After a disco nap that by definition was more like a proper sleep, we head down to Bossa for the second night running. Sankeys is in full swing and the room s are packed, Todd Terry is holding court in the Acid House dropping bombs from back in the day, much to the delight of the crowd, which contains a few veteran clubbers reliving their youth and more than a few of the new wave, acutely aware of the significance of this mans contribution and getting a taste of what it was like when the whole thing kicked off.
Sneak is next up and delivers a typically flawless performance. The original house gangster has a real commanding air about him behind the booth and he has the room moving to some wicked jackin house. Back in the basement and it’s time for the surprise guests for the night, and we are delighted to see it’s the Martinez Brothers. We have been lucky enough to catch them a couple of ties this season and they are great value. Bobbing about behind the booth, dropping wicked house nuggets, including their own track ‘H 2 Da Izzo’ which has been massive for them this summer. The Basement is busy but not that busy way when you can’t get your hands in your pockets, busy with smiling faces all enjoying the sounds and the little bit of space in which to get their groove on.
Solomun and H.O.S.H. are the next double act in the booth and they are greeted with a huge roar. Diynamic Neon Night was one of the season’s best parties, taking many by surprise and earning the talent behind it many new fans and a barrel load of plaudits. The cool house sound fills the room and the atmosphere jumps a notch or two as they get set to take the party home. After a spectacular debut season it was hard to see how Sankeys could up its game and build through season two but as the last party heads towards a dramatic conclusion, it’s fair to say they have. When the dust has settled, the neon paint is off the walls, the partying finally stops and the hangovers disappear, Sankeys can be proud of year two, I wonder what it has I store for us next year? As we go live with this report the massive basement rig is still throwing out beats across a packed dancefloor as the party rages on, roll on 2013!