Hardcore is a genre of music that originated in the UK in the early 80's. Hardcore events, known as Raves took place in fields, houses, clubs and warehouses throughout the UK. The police and government discouraged Raves due the large drug and alcohol consumption although could not control the spread of the phenomenon. Unfortunately for the Government and the police their attempt to squash the Hardcore scene failed, resulting in high-ticket prices for venues being rented especially for Raves. It is believed that over 40% of Rave ticket prices are a direct tax form the government, although this has not discouraged true and loyal Raves. This is evident in recent Raves that are often sold out within a few weeks of tickets being available.
Over the years Hardcore has evolved into a huge underground network. Most big cities in the UK have Hardcore connections, most noticeably the south coast (Southampton, Bournemouth and Portsmouth) other northern cities such as Birmingham, Bristol and Nottingham also has underground links with Hardcore. Hardcore has massively evolved since the 80's becoming faster, louder and harder than ever. Hardcore has become noticeably more popular in the 21st century.
The use of alcohol and drugs are a major factor on the Hardcore scene, drugs such as ecstasy, cocaine and MDMA are often associated with Hardcore and the Hardcore scene. The up-tempo beat and melody of the music attracts a variety of different ages, mostly the younger generation, although Hardcore has been recognised and respected by men and woman in there early 40's!
Hardcore is a 21st century phenomenon, becoming more popular and more recognised each year. Events such as Raver Baby, HTID (Hardcore Till I Die) and Hardcore Heaven are massive on the Hardcore scene. Other events such as Uproar are also popular amongst Hardcore fans.
Hardcore was known as happy Hardcore until the early 90's and was renamed UK Hardcore or Hardcore during the 92-93 period, although is still known by some as Rave and Happy Hardcore. Songs such as "Toytown" by Adam Hicks (Hixxy) was the pivotal point for Hardcore, "Toytown" was an exploration into the unknown and was one of the first songs which was home to the breakbeat, fast tempo style which vastly occupies the Hardcore scene today.
Hardcore is partly responsible for the branching of genres of music such as drum and bass, techno, dance, garage and UK grime/hip-hop. Hardcore is mostly computer generated, using the latest technology to create a more electric and up-tempo beat than ever before. Hardcore on average plays at about 180 – 220 bpm, depending on the song being played, some songs venture even higher!
Adam Hicks, known as DJ Hixxy is a living legend from the south coast (Portsmouth). He is partly responsible for the new generation of Hardcore, and has been involved in the makings of anthems such as "See the Light" and "24/7" and more recently "Take Me to Heaven" and "See of Love. Hixxy is currently in his 30's and still attends huge events such as HTID and Raver Baby. Hixxy is recognised as one of the greatest Hardcore DJ's alive, he has successfully carried Hardcore from the slower and less electronic beats to the more recent faster, harder and more vocal beats heard today.
Hixxy was one of the first of the new breed of Hardcore DJ's. DJ's Breeze and Darren Styles continued the new and more exciting beats of this "new Hardcore" and old time legends such as SY followed suit. Hardcore soon evolved and the older, slower tempo songs soon became known as "Old school". The mid to late 90's saw an unfortunate decrease in the Hardcore scene, songs being made weren’t as popular as before and Hardcore almost became extinct, still up coming DJ's such as Styles and Breeze remained loyal as well as legends such as Hixxy and SY. Hardcore reclaimed its legendary status in 21st century and has since remained popular and well supported.
Since the extraordinary amount of followers during the early 21st century many DJ’s have became involved in the Hardcore movement, DJ’s such as UFO, Slipmatt, Kevin Energy, Ramos, Supreme, Re-Con, Dougal, Sy, Unknown, Scorpio, Hixxy and many more have stayed loyal to the Hardcore scene have performed through thick and thin in an attempt to keep Hardcore alive.
Fortunately for the Ravers they succeeded and Hardcore is currently experience a fast increase of popularity and recognition. This is evident to the amount of Hardcore events taking place as well as the rate of new compilations being released, most recently Clubland X-treme Hardcore 4. The Clubland X-treme Hardcore series started in 2005 and is a branch off of the hugely successful and still ongoing Clubland series. The Clubland X-treme Hardcore series was one of the first compilations to include “new Hardcore” and has since been a massive success. Each release has seen Styles mix CD 1, Breeze CD 2 and Hixxy CD 3.
Other compilations such as the Bonkers collections have also been hugely popular. Bonkers was first released in 1996 and was mixed by Hixxy and Sharkey and has since released 17 different compilations as well as Best of Bonkers. Bonkers have seen CD’s mixed by Dougal, Sy, Scott Brown, Breeze and Styles, Re-Con, Marc Smith, Neophyte, CLSM, Kutski, Gammer, Druid, Brisk and Ham and Kevin Energy.
Hardcore is showing no sign of slowing down or becoming extinct. Events hit the country weekly and new breeds of DJ are being produced daily. Hardcore is expected to continue running the underground music scene. More and more people are becoming interested in UK Hardcore from around the globe and Ravers are staying loyal through out.
"I went to HTID 26 Heaven and Hell last night"
"Me to I got fuking buzzing!!!"
"Yeah and me up for dropping another 3 even though its 10am?"
"Yeah fuck it mate were Hardcore"
As they both alter the state of mind by taking copious amounts of ecstasy they sing -
"Why oh why can’t you just accept it? Because I’m a Raver not a fucking drug addict"
Although I have my doubts about the not a drug addict claim!
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