- Book 1 – Photo by Ewen Spencer, 80 pages.
- Book 2 – Mark Leckey and Ewen Spencer in conversation, 16 pages.
- Size: 16,5cm x 23,5cm
- Download card for an exclusive mixtape included inside
- Edition of 500
While Northern Soul and gabber may be miles apart both sonically and historically, certain shared values and something of a kindred spirit means that the two scenes dovetail in fascinating ways. The most obvious point of comparison is the rave culture that was the cornerstone of both back in their heyday. Northern Soul parties are now widely known for being some of the first legendary club nights, their all-night runtimes and relentless energy paving the way for music like gabber to keep the rave flag flying all those years later.
Ewan Spencer is already well-known for his photographic documentation of both Northern Soul and gabber culture, but in book 1 of Hardcore Soul the two are paired up. Spencer’s vivid images are presented side-by-side and in non-chronological order, a jumbling-up that emphasises the similarities (and some of the differences) between the scenes. As such, we are presented with 80 pages out of time, each one full of euphoria and ecstasy.
Book 1 is supplemented by a second, smaller book, one that sees Spencer discussing all things ravey with Turner Prize-winning artist Mark Leckey (Leckey, of course, is famous for his 1999 collage film and important piece of sub-cultural documentation Fiorucci Made Me Hardcore). In addition to the two books, we also get a mixtape produced by Gabber Eleganza, a ‘never-ending euphoria journey’ into the sound of happy hardcore.
Hardcore Soul, a new collaboration by Gabber Eleganza and Ewan Spencer, joins the dots between two great musical epochs - Northern Soul and hardcore gabber.