It’s a standard Friday night on the Toon, and you look as glamorous as you can in jeans and trainers, because it’s bloody freezing up here and you would like to be able to walk tomorrow. You’ve got a treble in hand or are just returning from the bar after having endured a tequila shot - unless of course you prinked hard; in which case you’re already flailing yourself across the dancefloor to whatever booming drum and bass monotony it is only possible to like when this wasted. All is fine and dandy. And then…'Fix You' comes on. WHAT THE HELL, DJ?
"Songs which were never designed for it are blasted out of huge speakers, choked by smoke machines and tainted by the general sticky grossness of a club dance floor"
This is the song you cried over your ex to. This is the song you listened to whilst staring wistfully out of a train window on your way back to a shit tonne of work, after a cosy weekend of ignoring it all at home. This is the song that’s played over Children In Need featurettes or uplifting moments on a reality TV show. This is NOT, I repeat, NOT, the song to which you’re going to kiss some randomer, throw some shockingly embarrassing shapes to or, in fact, make any of the terrible decisions that are inevitable on a night out to. Please, Mr DJ, turn it off before yet another of our most precious tunes is lost to the oblivion of the Club-Zone.
I say yet another, because the list is sprawling. Club-Zoning, a bit like Friend-Zoning, is the overuse of songs in clubs until their potential for anything more than a standard drunken sing-along is utterly dashed. Songs which were never designed for it are blasted out of huge speakers, choked by smoke machines and tainted by the general sticky grossness of a club dance floor. They’ve been blighted, warped, manipulated and nullified to the point where I can no longer listen to 'Seven Nation Army' without the taste of Jäger beginning to linger on my tongue, or 'Hey-Ya' without impromptu and irrepressible body spasms trying to force me to “shake it like a Polaroid picture”.
"Songs people know the words to are, of course, needed in clubs"
Like many people, I struggle to have fun on a night out when the playlist is dominated by lyricless, synthy compositions during which you have to actually check if your ribs are still there because of the ferocity of its drums. As much as these are a going out staple and should certainly make an appearance for the sake of that grimey guy in your friendship group (because, bless him, he does put up with your obsession with Flares), if you can’t bawl out 'Waterfalls' by TLC in that hoarse, impaled-cat-esque voice of yours in a club, then where can you? Songs people know the words to are, of course, needed in clubs.
My argument, however, is that, like everything in life, too much or too often and it’s a recipe for disaster. We all love a bit of Queen B and 'Crazy In Love' is a tune, but there are only so many times you can twerk with your gal pals without it becoming just a tad weird. But at the same time, sticking a vulgar, pulsing beat behind 'Riptide' is a violation of the unwritten clubbing code. So, Mr DJ, keep the bangers coming, just know your limits.