Sweat! has been up and running now for over nine years. The two original main room residents are still going strong, spinning their own personal blend of late night deep house. Shane Johnson & Greg Dowling have been involved with the Cork dance scene as long as anybody and continue to draw impressive crowds to the main dancefloor every Saturday night, as well as releasing their own vinyl under their Fishgodeep moniker. They also hold down a weekly slot on Radio Friendly 104.6FM on a Saturday, between the hours of 6 and 10.
The Back Bar has been masterminded by Stevie G for over five years, and has been transformed into an essential part of the Cork clubbing scene. Spinning a selection of hip-hop, soul & drum'n'bass, Stevie rocks the Back Bar crowds like nobody else could. He also has residencies in Mor Disco, Silk in Limerick, Free La Funk on a Thursday and Jazz Juice in the Blue Note, Galway.
A new addition to the Sweat! line-up is Marq Walsh in the Annex (Room 3), playing a more upfront selection of house music. Marq is one of Cork's more established house DJs (there are loads of them!), and this initiative has taken off with a bang in recent weeks.
Sweat! is a night that has seen many changes over the years, but the atmosphere has always been nothing short of firing. This is Cork's original dance night and continues to receive phenomenal praise from the likes of Carl Cox, Justin Robertson, John Aquaviva, Gayle San and Eric Rug.
One reason for Sweat!'s continued success is its legendary weekenders. These have been drawing the cream of the international underground dance crop to Cork's Mecca. For example, this Patrick's Weekender comprised Gayle San, Nelson Rosado, DJ Sonique, Ann Savage, Lisa Lashes, Jim 'Shaft' Ryan, John '00' Fleming, Lisa Pin-Up, Colin Tevendale, Trevor Reilly, Paul P, Colin Bass and others, which is an indication of the calibre of the night.
Sunday (Essence / Tabasco)
Cork's longest running drum'n'bass club, Essence, is hosted by Bass Odyssey members Alan O' Keefe & Graham Finn. Based in the Back Bar, regular guests include DJ Source & Razor. Bass Odyssey have had one 12" release so far. Entitled Twilight (with a track called Essence on the flip), it was released on Quadrophonic. The lads also recently finished a tour of America, which was a resounding success. In the main room, Sweat! resident Marq Walsh has been booking quality fortnightly guests for this fledgling night, which is based around a varying house formula. Recent guests have included Galactic Disco.
Monday (Jah Love Sound):
Only the Back Bar is open on a Monday, with the Jah Love Sound System pumping out roots, dancehall, dub & reggae vibes for the more conscious clubber. Check out http://www.aardvark.ie/zeitgeist for more details on this.
Freakscene is a quite established club on the Cork scene, drawing a sizeable crowd every Wednesday night. There is indie & rock on the main floor, while in the Back Bar, Jenny Glitt and Shirley Sparkle were pumping out high-octane disco classics long before the recent 70's revival. This room, lovingly entitled Danascene, really has to be seen to be believed. Suffice to say, if you like your music with a taste of cheddar, you'll absolutely love this. The third room is given over to Keith Synott & Melo-D, spinning various shades of dance music.
Possibly the most vibrant night in Cork at the moment, Urban has been up and running in its present state for two years.
Immrama is by far the most popular techno night in Cork, and draws an incredible crowd to the main room week after week. The residents (Jade, Kiethman & dc comic) keep the music policy firmly rooted in funky, up-for-it techno. With the recent overhaul of the sound system, a couple of days set aside for aural recovery are a prerequisite!
The Back Bar sees Sweat! residents Greg and Shane taking their deep house formula into vastly more intimate settings, while the Annex is taken over by Free La Funk (which was previously based in the main room). A truly exciting occurrence, this room is a soundclash between the jungle beats of Cork's premier d'n'b DJ, Alan O' Keefe, and the brand of funky, party-oriented hip-hop patented by Stevie G.
A sister club to Freakscene, this two-year-old club has a very similar (and successful) music policy. The indie tunage in the main room is governed by Paul McD & Fadd Jnr., while Keith Synott's O2 club is a huge success in the third room, with a very similar music policy to Wednesday night. Meanwhile, DJ Fork's Funk Shop has a 5-year history, and continues to push his trademark blend of funky and downright bizarre beats. Definitely recommended.