Went out to my first gig in aaaaages, last night. Mclusky & Corrigan at “Kef”. Mclusky were as ace as I’d been told they would be. Loud, rawking and bonkers. Corrigan were alright, but didn’t exactly grab me…
However, the main talking point of the night, for me, was the venue. Kef used to be known as Lava, until a few weeks ago, when it was done up and renamed. Lava was good. I spent many a happy night there, watching a load of bands over the couple of years it was on the go. Kef, unfortunately, isn’t good.
There’s absolutely no space at all, thanks to how they’ve revamped the layout. The upstairs bar area is now about half the size it used to be, as they’ve stuck in a load of booths at one end, where all the seats used to be. These booths and the only other seating area in the building are closed off during gigs, it would seem. I’d hate to see what it’s like on a really busy night (say, if Capdown were to come back). To top it all off, the upstairs area no longer has any means of hearing or seeing the bands.
Downstairs, things are only slightly better, if they’re better at all. Sure, there’s a bit more standing space, thanks to them removing the downstairs bar in the “upper downstairs area”… but you’re not likely to get a very good view. Also, the roof is now lower on this area, I think. This makes the entire section quite claustrophobic. There’s also this stupid thing made out’ve fiber optic, coming out’ve the roof, but I’ll skip over that.
As far as I can tell, the main downstairs area – the bit infront of the stage – hasn’t changed. Which is nice. Well, apart from the DJ booth being lowered so it’s directly behind the bands, instead of being above them, but that’s no great deal.
Another complaint that I’ve got against Kef, is that it’s hot. Waaaay hotter than what Lava used to be. This is probably due to the more confined spaces, and the fact that the cooler air from upstairs can no longer flow downstairs easily.
My final complaint… the name. “Kef”. Exactly what does it mean? What is it supposed to represent? Ok, Lava wasn’t much better, but at least it didn’t sound like a pretentious, “trend” bar. Face it, it sounds shit.
On the plus side, it does look a lot cleaner and the overall decor is a lot nicer…
R.I.P Lava… I’ll miss you.