Ian ‘Snowy’ Snowball and Centreforce Radio
Specific State ’89 (New Haven Publishing)
Prolific novelist Snowy had the idea to pen a stage production, which he concluded around two years ago. The intention was it would be no ordinary stage show; it would include a DJ laying down a soundtrack transporting the audience back to the Acid House era of 1989. The experience would be enhanced by laser and strobe lights plus an abundance of dry ice. Screens at the back of the stage would project footage of raves from that time period. A minimal number of actors would punctuate the time-travelling tale of hedonistic excesses. Its title was simply Rave. Discovering that a stage production, especially one such as he had in mind, was far from as straightforward as it might seem, Snowy reverted to what he is already renowned for to get this story across. Which is where his latest tome Specific State ’89 came from. It has two parts, the first fictional, albeit based on and drawn from many of his own first-hand experiences from that period. Set in London it traces the exploits of two friends, Patch and Tat as they discover and immerse themselves in the ever-growing underground rave scene. Chapters are in a chronological month by month overview of that scene as it grew over the year, taking in many of the biggest rave events of 1989. The duo even head to the North West to sample a northern take on the rave scene via a visit to Manchester’s Hacienda club at its peak. Their mutual love of House music leads them to set up a pirate radio station, very much inspired by real-life pirate radio Certreforce. Part two is factual, including interviews with DJs, producers and promoters from 1989. There’s even a 100-tune playlist from Patch and Tat’s fictional Eclipse pirate radio – a retrospective look at what was hotter than hot in 1989.