Upon being asked to review Haus x BPM x Amen x Frequency x Pulse, I first tried to get my head around who was even hosting the night. When it emerged it was all five at once and at the Rule, I accepted my fate.
Outside, I was faced with the usual gaggle of revellers, and freshers that don’t know any better than to not buy a ticket to every single event flashed across their Facebook feed. In typical fashion, everyone was obliterated. Perhaps this amalgamation of collectives falls into the category of “if you don’t turn up already drunk, the night is subpar'' —I draw your attention to the now-defunct 601 for reference. Still, optimistic about my chances due to the loud bass booming and slightly miserable bouncers, I skipped into the Rule.
As this event occurred in October in Scotland — and I know people claim “it’s not that bad!” — I assure you, it was freezing. And, in lieu of the freezing temperatures and freshers dressed to impress, I would have thought that someone across one of the FIVE collectives hosting would have devised a better cloakroom system than just chucking your coat on the floor or shoving it in a corner and hoping your favourite black North Face puffer is still there when you’re about to stagger back to halls.
Despite this, I must admit I was pleasantly surprised by the music on offer. The soundsystem was loud, clear and (surprisingly for St Andrews), good quality! The difference this made to the night was clear to me–much better than a janky, crackly speaker in Aikmans basement (I’m looking at you, Danceworm).
For me, the musical highlight came from Pulse’s Reece Harriot. Although perhaps not the most creative or unique of DJs, he certainly knows how to read a crowd and consequently had the most impactful set of the night. Whether it was Drake or garage, Pulse (and Reece) certainly had the crowd bouncing and the vibes were great. The full range of DJs were varied and fun, and despite my reservations about music events being hosted at the Rule — it’s hardly Berghain — my expectations were admittedly surpassed.
Despite the overall success of the night, one qualm is Amen collective’s relegation to the side room. Naturally, the main room was busy all night but the side room was very sparse — perhaps due to its position on the way to the loo. For a shared night with varying collectives and vibes, I would have appreciated a wider mix of DJs and styles in the side room than just the one collective. Admittedly, I did not spend too much time on the smaller dance floor, but the minutes I did spend boogying were greatly enhanced by some excellent Amen mixes, so all credit to them for doing the best they could with a bad situation.
Overall, although perhaps a part of me really doesn’t want to admit it, I did actually have quite a fun time at the Rule for Haus of Sinners. In the end, if you could overlook the chaos at the entrance and the cloakroom woes, and focus on the music instead, the night turned out to be a pleasant surprise. Perhaps the best part of the night was the proximity to Shawarma at the end — a little treat before we all stumble into bed, ready to do the exact same thing next week.
Photo: Maisie Lock Ørstavik