There is no place on the internet filled with more longing, emotion and history than the comments beneath old skool rave tracks on YouTube. The highs inspired by the 90s party scene have etched into the digital era via heartfelt paragraphs filled with wistful narrative and wholesome declarations of music’s enduring impact.
From articles in Vice and art projects to Facebook groups and Twitter accounts, their wonder has been well documented. But never has the evocative trip experienced through this corner of the internet hit quite so hard as during the coronavirus pandemic. Most of the comments come from before my time, and although they can be moving, I’ve always enjoyed them from a light-hearted perspective as entertaining snapshots into pill-drenched nostalgia. I’d shrug off the “life was idyllic back then, everyone was unified, happy.. Wot happnd to us??” type messages. I was cynical: were the 90s actually perfect, or were you just young and on ecstasy?
Read this next: A guide to knowing when to leave the afterparty
But now I get it. Raving has been made impossible by the pandemic and my yearning for past times spent on dancefloors has hit an unbearable peak. I’m ready to glamourise getting crushed against walls in oversold clubs and struggling to get served at slow-moving bars, I long to freeze on a street corner waiting for a taxi to a tragic after party 30 miles from home. I really want to go out dancing and listen to loud music.
While that’s not possible, the stirring, heartwarming, animated YouTube comments community is tiding me over with all the rave feels I need to get by. Join me in this joy by indulging in some of the favourite deep cuts picked out below. Tip: best enjoyed while listen to this old-skool rave playlist.
Read this next: Exploring the nostalgic treasures of the Rave Archive
Read this next: I spent the weekend raving online and it was actually really fun
Read this next: 20 iconic illegal rave photos
Read this next: Get the best of Mixmag direct to your Facebook DMs