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Setting trends in the city.

Byline: By Simon Stuart

All music is prone to fads and fashion. As long as new music is being made there will always be a bandwagon for people to jump on and as negative as this may initially sound, it's ultimately a positive thing. After all, new music is being made no matter what your taste.

One such genre, which has had more than its fair share of support and rejection, is Hard House. Now once there was a time when Todd Terry was called Hard House but the passing of time and DJs crystallised the term to mean 4/4 beats that tread similar paths to their synthy Trance cousins.

Hard House was a victim of its own success. Like Trance, it found itself on a collision course with the stark reality of its future popularity after the sudden emergence then swift swamping of the nation's airwaves. You'd think people would have learned by now just how bad too much of a good thing can be.

2003 though, looks set to be the year club land finally gets to grips with itself after the major cleansing it's had to endure over the past number of years. With much of the dead wood finally floating off into horizon, Hard House too seems to be finding its feet again after losing so many of its core players - most notably Tony De Vit. De Vit's death came as a shock to the industry, especially considering he was on the cusp of true greatness. His loss tore a hole in the scene that has effectively taken until now to heal.

As other genres have found though, such situations can prove to be their breaking. They either die or come back stronger, none more so than Hard House which, with a wrath of emerging new talent, is finding favour with a new generation.

Locally, new breed DJ Mark Maitland looks set to lead the charge. A co-founder of top Hard Dance site nakedsounds.com, Mark is now resident and co-promoter of Promise's monthly Hard sessions, which tonight places him alongside the region's other big Hard hope, Kerry James and the internationally acclaimed live act, Lab 4. I have a funny feeling tonight could well be the start of something very significant for the city.

SIMON STUART

Letters to: djsimonstuart@hotmail.com
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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:May 16, 2003
Words:387
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