If you were wondering what the ads in last month’s issue cryptically stating the word “Venue” in last month’s issue of Discorder were, wonder no more. Venue is what’s going to be located at the newly renovated Plaza, with a whole new interior and new branding.
“It’s a complete renovation of the club,” said Dax Droski, a representative of the Adelphia Group which will be running the new night spot.
The new venue will be located in the exact same location on the Granville strip and is slotted for a mid-June opening. It will still be keeping up the practice of a weekend curfew, with any live shows ending at 10 p.m. to kick off a DJ night that will be playing “pop, rock and retro” with “bass heavy electro remixes.” Droski said people who attended the shows would be welcome to stick around and that the music will probably fit the tastes of concert goers a lot more than the previous R&B nights that shuffled people out the door at the Plaza. Monday to Thursday will be concerts without curfews so audiences can expect to enjoy normal set times. The newly renovated Venue will be targeting a hipster crowd with the electro-pop outfit the Veronicas already booked for June 27.
With their sexed up ads and ironic name they may be trying a bit too hard to present themselves as “cool,” but any effort to change Granville Street’s image can’t be all bad. Either way they’re going to have an uphill slog trying to convince hipsters to head back to Granville Street, especially now that venues in East Van have built up followings.
Fans of live music in town will also be happy to note that Hoko Sushi and Karaoke Bar is going to be providing music once again in Vancouver.
“Now I have a live music permit from the City and the liquor board,” said Jian Chao, a manager at Hoko’s. “So I am very happy.”
Hoko’s got into trouble in February when it was found that they had been operating for years without the proper permits for live music. They have since applied for the missing permit, and plan on being careful not to breach their midnight curfew or the City’s strict noise bylaws.
“We do not play loud music, like heavy metal,” said Chao. She hopes the city will allow for some leniency from those enforcing the bylaws, which (as we have noted before) are strict enough that almost every business open past 10 p.m. in Vancouver is breaking them almost every night.
For a taste of what sort of music Hoko’s will be booking, check out the Phantom Islands night, which is hosted by Jarrett Evan Sampson of Collapsing Opposites and Shipyards.
Little Mountain Studios cancelled a number of shows after receiving noise complaints during One Cool Word’s Third Birthday. The night was shut down early and a number of bands who had shows booked at the art gallery/venue later in the month found themselves scrambling for a new place to play. Though things seem to have stabilized now, the venue is still closing early to avoid further noise complaints and they have changed their Facebook group name to Little Mountain Gallery, which implies that they’ll be focusing more on their role as an art gallery than a music venue in the future.
What do Hoko’s and Little Mountain have in common though? They’re both some of the few venues in Vancouver that allow music fans under the age of 19 to see music. If you’re as annoyed at the lack of all ages spaces in Vancouver then you may want to consider joining the Safe Amplification Site Society, “a non-profit society dedicated to establishing a permanent all-ages space for music and other arts events in Vancouver.”
“There’s been a lot of problems with venues getting shut down in Vancouver, particularly all ages venues,” said Ryan McCormick, a director for SASS. The group is organizing to try and work with the city and police to provide a safe venue that underagers can attend.
“We want a venue that’s stable and all ages,” said McCormick. The group is still looking for a site and plans to run it without liquor sales so they are hoping to get things going with government grants and donations from the public. They’re just getting started and looking for people who are interested in getting involved. To find out more about them check out their website at www.safeamp.org.