Last Friday, inspired by the testimony of James McMahon, I went to London's Ultimate Power, a night that plays nothing but billowing power ballads, almost all of them from the mid-80s.

Now, I know what you're thinking: a bunch of reprehensible Nathan Barleys throwing ironic shapes to Bon Jovi anthems. You'd rather spend an evening puncturing your own nutsack with a staplegun, right?

But it's really not like that (well, apart from the Bon Jovi bit). Honestly. Ultimate Power attracts the least pretentious, most unambiguously upbeat crowd I've ever encountered in London. Meanwhile, the organisers have grasped a central truth of clubbing - namely, that people don't necessarily want to dance on a night out, but they most certainly do want to sing.

Call me pitifully unhip, but I'd argue there are few experiences in life more purely enjoyable than standing on a dangerously packed dancefloor with a skinful of gin and my arm around my girlfriend, howling along to Heart's 'Alone'.

Sure, I could go to some underground warehouse rave in Dalston, but where's the fun in that? I want to extract the maximum possible amount of joy from a night out, I don't want to be 'educated' in fidget house or skweee by some up-himself DJ.

I spent seventeen years of my life being 'educated' - I don't need to take any musical tips from a coked-up old Harrovian in a Darwin Deez headband, thanks very much.

We only have a fixed number of Friday nights on this earth. I'd rather not waste any of mine standing grim-faced at a bar, pretending to enjoy 'Tonight' by Droop-E feat. Kanobby (prod. by Silkie).

For this reason, I admit that I'm profoundly unqualified to talk about the best club nights in the UK. So that's why I'm turning it over to you lot.

With an honorary mention to our friends at Club NME KOKO, which are the nights that you go to week in week out, safe in the knowledge that you'll end up dancing like a maniac/getting off with someone/having the time of your life?

Share This

Connect With Us
This Week's Magazine