Old skool rave (1992-5) – Mixed by Gabber Eleganza

A mind-bending journey through golden-era hardcore from the Italian archivist.

Since 2011, Alberto Guerrini has endeavoured to capture the spirit of hardcore and gabber and share it with the world. It was then that he started the Gabber Eleganza blog, a visual archive of the hardcore era made up of posters, magazine clippings and old photographs of raves. Having spent his youth, specifically from 1999-2005, deeply immersed in the culture, Guerrini is on a personal mission to connect rave’s heyday with the younger generation; and the current resurgence of hard dance and gabber owes much to his influence.

Last year, a release on Presto?! saw him bridge the gap between his visual archive and the sound of gabber. This week, he’s built upon this connection by launching the label Never Sleep with a new mixtape and book entitled Hardcore Soul. To celebrate the launch, Guerrini has mixed a selection of seminal rave tracks released between 1992 and ’95. The spirit and energy of that time can be felt pulsating through this mix, which touches on jungle and trance among the more classic sounds of acid and happy hardcore.

To accompany the mix, Guerrini has sent the following quotation from Hardcore Soul, spoken by contemporary artist Mark Leckey: “You’re in a sort of vague state where you’re not quite yourself. What I always liked about the definition of ecstasy is that it forces you to be outside of yourself. You’re kind of taking pleasure in your body as you stand outside yourself.”

Hardcore Soul is out now via Never Sleep. Read our interview with Guerrini on the book here.