Ever since to 1990s, conkers have been linked to the seamless flow of techno, hardcore, house, nutstep and post-industrial dance music, or to put it another way, raves. Originally conker swingers would perform alongside go-go dancers and fire eaters, but it wasn’t long before bouts would spontaneously occur between jacked up ravers.
“A conker game is taken to another level when conducted within a rave.” Said Lloyd Tripper, a regular at conker raves. “The music is amplified with large, powerful sound systems. This unique bass causes conkers to resonate in a unique way, which subtly changes the way they swing and make contact.” It is said that a direct hit between two rave conkers can cause euphoric feelings for the swingers.
Event organisers became concerned, that people were attending raves just to rub nuts with each other, in an attempt to get high. This act, which became known as ‘chasing the nut’, was banned in the early 2000s, as a result of countless injuries. The decision was taken in consultation with the Conker Federation to ban rave matches.
In a statement at the time, Bobby Seywatt said “The main issue was that darkness, combined with laser light shows, projected coloured images and fog machines, made it impossible to see the conker. As a result people were getting hit with flying nuts and garrotted by laces”
Law enforcement raids have always presented a challenge to the rave scene in many countries. This was always due to association of illegal drugs such as MDMA, but with banning of conkers, raves were finally pushed underground in several cities, such as Berlin, Milan and Patras, and held in basements, warehouses and forests.
But, thanks to Nut Corp. this story has a happy ending. Over the past 20 years the boffins have been at work seeking a solution, that solution comes in the form of laces that glow in the dark!
“When the breakthrough came, we all just looked at each other in silence. The green glow of the laces illuminating our smiles. It was so simple, by making the laces visible in the dark, we solve all the problems.” Said Dr Morocco Head of Conker Division at Nut Corp.
The Conker federation have already begun the process of repealing the laws, and it is expected that conker raves will be in full swing before the end of the summer.