With so much going on in Leeds every week and so many clubs to choose from, a social at a bar in Headingley might not be at the top of your list when looking for your next big night out, especially if you’re looking for something more than just Top 40 chart fodder. But when it was revealed that Hannah Wants would be making a live appearance to celebrate the first birthday of Voodoo Bar’s weekly Headingley Social, it virtually became a must-attend event. It didn’t hurt that entry was free either, especially considering the many fun but wallet-straining nights in Leeds lately at big, newer venues like Mint Warehouse and Canal Mills.
Originating from Birmingham, DJ and producer Hannah Wants has been at the forefront of the North and Midlands jackin house scene for at least the last year or so, with a healthy selection of mixes and tracks regularly popping up on her Soundcloud, YouTube or elsewhere. Stylistically she leans more towards the ‘deeper’ side of the jackin spectrum, tending to play more garage and deep house than other jackin DJs, but when she feels like it she can produce some proper bangers too, especially when working with fellow Brummie Lorenzo (Check out their forthcoming tracks ‘Dappy’ and ‘None A Them’). So she has equal appeal to fans of both a Disclosure or a Nastee Boi, which may explain her rapid ascent to the top of the UK’s bass and house scene, and the warm reception she received at Voodoo last week.
Following on from a serviceable but kinda boring tech-house DJ, Wants approached the decks and was immediately greeted with cheers and photo requests, which came as a nice surprise. I wasn’t sure how many people would be here to see her or just for some casual drinks on a Thursday night, but as the dancefloor filled up it quickly became clear that people were here for the DJ. It stopped feeling like a bar and started to feel more like an intimate club night, as Wants proceeded to run through a host of jackin anthems and modern house tunes, with the crowd totally on her side for the whole way, and at one point even doing a mass sing along to one of the jackin track’s basslines. It was that catchy. The highlight had to be when Hannah Wants played the aforementioned ‘Dappy’, which weirdly slows down to hip-hop speed half way through, before gradually building back up as the whole crowd danced faster and faster. Fun night, and proof that the best nights in Leeds can often be found in unexpected corners of the city.
photo: Justin Gardner