Review by Tom Frodsham

You’re spoilt for choice really in Manchester if you fancy a dance to some classic pop tracks. You’ve got Poptastic at Alter Ego, POP at Deaf Institute and Pop Curious? at Kraak.  

I love any of these kinds of nights because it’s music that you know and can sing along to (badly). Many of the pop classics played take you back to your childhood in the nineties (or eighties if you’re old enough) and when you’ve had a drink you can really let go and have a good time.

Hidden away, like some secret passageway, off a side street in the Northern Quarter that’s never easy to find after a Vodka or two, is Kraak. It’s a small venue that makes up for its size with the quality and variety of nights that it hosts. This time it was Pop Curious? And the crowd were promised “Pop Music/Played Loud”. Like there is any other way?!

Open 11pm-4pm, it’s a fiver to get in (2 for 1 with an NUS card) and the drinks weren’t too expensive – you could get 3 cans for a tenner so happy rounds for all! On the wall next to the entrance was a display of famous face masks (J-Lo, Madonna, Buddy Holly, Rachel Stevens etc) and other pop props which the audience are encouraged to wear for the evening. Apparently last time they did this Geri Halliwell and Ana Matronic tweeted back to the people who were pictured wearing their masks. Practically rubbing shoulders with the glitterati!

Despite all this glamour, the best part of the night was the music. The tracks were a lot more varied than the music at other ‘Pop’ nights. DJ’s Thom Docking and Gary Williams (who are the creators of Drunk at Vogue and are set to DJ on Friday for MIF) played tracks straight from the requests made on the Facebook events page. Jennifer Lopez ‘Play’, Christina Aguilera ‘Your Body’, Roisin Murphy ‘Let Me Know’ and randomly Louise ‘Beautiful Inside’ (I say randomly…I still have the CD single somewhere) were just a few of the highlights.

Classics from The Spice Girls, Girls Aloud, Scissor Sisters and Cher maintained the standard of an unashamedly proud evening of true POP at it’s best. I recommend Pop Curious? to anyone who wants a Pop night where Pop isn’t a ‘Guilty Pleasure’ but a way of life!

Pop Curious? takes place at Kraak on the last Saturday of every month. 

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