Blowing smoke in people’s faces… literally: 2022 in clubland

We cannot surely be the only ones at Ears To The House to have noticed the pattern at an awful lot of festivals and events this year. This might require a little explaining on our part, so please bear with us – because it’s to do with smoke machines, of all things.

Now, we obviously know these aren’t exactly new to the clubbing world – they’ve been in use since the 1990s, typically to try and create an atmosphere or sense of excitement where none exists. Which probably explains why, in the largely monochrome dance music world of 2022, we’re seeing them a lot right now.

And they all seem to get used in much the same way. You get a DJ who’s playing what used to be called a breakdown on a record. A snare roll starts playing – because a lot of producers can’t seem to think of any other way of creating energy in their tracks – and you see the DJ trying to get the audience all hyped up and excited. Something’s going to happen, people!

There’s just one problem – there usually isn’t. So to conceal the fact nothing is actually going to happen, the smoke machines go off just as the track starts to try and get going again – usually for around three to five seconds. If you’re not sure what we mean, here’s a good example with John Summit playing at Parklife in Manchester…

Other examples are available…

You’ll find countless others online – but we have one question. Who is supplying all these smoke machines? Because whoever it is must be making a fortune at the moment – they’re to be seen at most of the big festivals this year. Does someone out there think it looks good on Instagram or something? Because we’ve seen enough of them to know it doesn’t.

Still, it does somewhat disprove a Mail Online story from November 2020 suggesting nightclubs might have to stop using them due to dry ice all being taken up transporting coronavirus vaccines. Because they’re everywhere at the moment…

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