My simmering excitement for the first A Night With… of 2013 was faintly laced with two-fold apprehension about the single-DJ format and the chosen venue. I last visited Basing House when it was known as On The Rocks, which famously played host to the defiantly dirty, East-End fiesta Trailer Trash. Despite the heady success of those parties, memories of a sweaty sea of jostling bodies barricading the bar stuck in my mind. Also, I seem to approach the idea of an eight-hour set with a little more cynicism than many of my peers, even if it's coming from a respected and experienced figure like Trevor Jackson.
The refurbishment of Basing House has made a significant difference. The opening up of the indoor space and welcome addition of an outdoor chill-out area upstairs have made it a much more pleasant space while retaining its intimacy. Jackson asserted his prowess over the venue's Funktion One soundsystem, exploring his encyclopedic musical library with ease. He kept things relatively low-key for the first couple of hours, mostly sticking to down-beat techno and disco selections. For those left yearning for a little more energy, he proceeded to guide us through a well-crafted evolution of genres too numerous to name. One highlight was a string of impeccably selected drum & bass tracks, featuring the distinctive bassline of Aphrodite and Mickey Finn's "Badass" and the unforgettable vocal of DJ Zinc's "Super Sharp Shooter (remix)," to the nostalgic delight of the crowd.
The final hour of Jackson's eight-hour set showered its unsuspecting audience with such diverse treats as "Don't Go" by '80s synthpop duo Yazoo, an unknown Prince track (he wouldn't say which one) and the extended remix of Fleetwood Mac's "Big Love." Jackson's mixing skills were unquestionably inferior to his selections—my ears pricked up to several slightly jarring transitions. But his outstanding talent for shifting between genres, keeping the crowd guessing and avoiding any sense of tokenism, more than afforded him this.