Currently reading : Gabber is ours and its the best things that there is
There is a a kid of irrationality to the sub genre of hardcore techno music Gabba, a kind of ridiculous violence but simultaneously a safety in its certainty to how it will always escalate to a similarly excessive finish. The beats will gradually gravitate to an overwhelming quantity per minute resulting in a repetitively unavoidable sound which often verges on the absurd. This short documentary made in 1995 explores the incredibly popular Dutch Gabber scene by interviewing people at raves while they incoherently gurn and explain the importance of gabba in their lives.
The attendees of the raves associate gabba to their weekends in an almost religious way. The trance like dances that gabba produces with the help of ingesting copious amounts of drugs are presented to the viewers of the documentary through filming of lone dancers in sparse studios which creates some of the most visually fantastic scenes. The dances incorporate a sort of mania with hopping and and sprawling arms all created with a complete seriousness.
The documentary also presents a great portrayal of gabba’s distinct fashions. Shaved heads on men in an almost skin head style are paired with shell suits while women perfect their architecturally exact hairstyles, shaved at the sides with long high pony tails and pierced eyebrows.
The film brings up interesting ideas about how this subculture became commercial and how the devotees are unaware of how commercially viable their lifestyle had become as they fill venues of extortion capacity on a weekly basis. The documentary captures the essence of this subcultures before its real honesty, where it once had existed as a truly original cultural phenomenon the records labels and party organises soon understood how to cash in on lifestyle that Gabba carried with it. By 1995 Gabba had diluted into what we now know as Happy Hardcore and the more devoted fans of the scene became less interested as it brought in a younger and more commercially driven audience.
Watch the documentary below: