Bermondsey Goes Balearic… [Spring 1988]

The Boy’s Own fanzines, curated by Terry Farley, Pete Heller, Andrew Weatherall and a motley crew of contributors, are the stuff of legend, tracking the transition from the ‘football casual’ culture of the mid-80s to a rave-led wonderland.

As Farley told Vice magazine in 2014, going clubbing in the late 1980s was a somewhat eye-opening experience, as the new dawn of what we now know as acid house was emerging.

“All of a sudden, loads of people were coming in, all just dressed in regular clothes, like Dr Martens and Levi’s, and they came in doing this kind of normal dancing, while this other group of people were doing this kind of Ibiza dancing,” Farley explained.

“It was weird, you would see these people, like 25 of them, do this rave Ibiza style dance and you could watch everyone else looking at them and copying them. This just led to everyone mimicking everyone. People changed overnight.”

As this snippet from the Boy’s Own fanzine issue of Spring 1988 indicates, the change, when it arrived, was absolute.

Under the headline ‘Bermondsey Goes Balearic’, the article captures both the innocence and rebelliousness of the nascent rave scene in London, as well as painting a beautiful picture of a typical evening in Ibiza, 30 years ago.

“Amnesia is more of a street club, in that people don’t dress up; they dress down and come to dance the night through 6am,” the article reads.

“The club is completely open air, with music in the style of house, euro-beat and rock. It’s at Amnesia that you start to see a unique fashion style of baggy clothes and dungarees, worn for comfort and ease of movement, when dancing for hours non-stop.”

As for Pacha? “The clientele is overridingly gay, with a splattering of transvestites. It’s for the more dressed-up people, very much like the Cafe de Paris in London (stand and pose).”

What we wouldn’t give for a functioning time machine..! 🙂

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