Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Babes In Toyland

Last night, the BFF & I went to the "grand opening" party for this new music space in Hollywood called the Vanguard. As is usually the case with events like this, the club has already been open and having the occasional show for the last month or so, and evidently this party was to create awareness for the new place and get people in there to check it out. Plus, there was free booze and sushi.

The hot gossip around town was that the folks who book the bands at Spaceland, LA's hippest of the hip of indie rock venues, were behind the whole thing. They had been booking occasionally at the Fonda, a larger venue in Hollywood, when a show too big for Spaceland would play (like Kasabian or Metric or something). Folks say there was a falling out of sorts between the Spaceland kids and the Fonda kids, and the Spaceland kids took their show to the Vanguard.

The place is pretty slick, and right away made me think of the Hacienda in Manchester, if the Hacienda had fake stone walls around the bar near the entrance. It's a high ceiling-ed, fancy dance floor-ed, curtains and cabanas kind of place. A bit classy for the Brian Jonestown Massacre, but that's who they've got next week. The Crystal Method will have a club night, Marques Wyatt has a club night, and super tripster Devendra Banhart will play there in October.

The Vanguard, however, is all about its smoking patio. That's practically half the size of the club itself - a huge, lushly landscaped outdoor area with lots of benches and private tents (where one can pay a fortune for bottle service and close the drapes for the night). There are fountains, a giant Buddha, lovely lamps and lots of space to mingle. That's where everybody is going to be, my friends. It made me wish I was a smoker.

The Buddha was a bit much, though.