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Why do the plushest venues play terrible music while the best tunes are only heard in cesspits? Ally Byers rants.
The Russian Revolution started when an underclass became aware of how the other half lived. Come Saturday night, when your flatmates head toward the wine bar in the centre of town while
you find yourself getting a 30-minute cab to a venue that looks like an underground train station in Magnitigorsk, you begin to understand why.
You listen to an earth-shattering set. You also sniff someone’s armpit for hours while warm beer is poured over you. Your mate wanders through a mysterious green door and is now missing, presumed dead, and the following morning you receive a cease-and-desist letter from your washing machine after trying to rinse the ash/vodka/placenta out of your T-shirt.
Meanwhile, an invitation to your friend Trustfundia’s drinky-winks to celebrate her parents buying her a new flat/house/small African nation enters you into a world of seating, of mood lights, of table service. The smoking area is in the same postcode, and there’s a taxi rank less than a minute away. Unfortunately you also get five hours of Fatman Scoop-alikes courtesy of DJ Darren who spends the night arguing in the booth with his 18-year-old girlfriend.
Why can’t we, just occasionally, have good music in a nice venue? While I can’t imagine Villalobos going down a storm in Mayfair, or people listening to Sasha over sushi, there must be a middle ground that we can strike. It used to be all about cost, but with underground parties’ door tax and drinks prices increasingly similar to those of our less sweaty peers, could bass-bin lovers somehow join with blazered-boys and combine the best of both worlds?
Unfortunately, social cliques tend to remain just that: cliquey. As it stands, our bottle service-loving friends are unlikely to enjoy music loud enough to see, in just the same way that underground fans are unlikely to rock up to any club with a name that sounds like a Spanish STD.
Which is a shame. I can envisage a whole new sub-genre emerging: deck shoe dubstep, perhaps, or three house house, or, given the weather, Barbour jacket bass? Promoters: reach out. there’s a gap here.