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Astoria & LA2 RIP

The first gig I ever went to at the Astoria was in 1989. It was to see a rock band called 'Dare'  - who I think were supporting another band called Garrison, although they may have been headlining themselves. Without diving into a stack of old diaries (as opposed t my nice and easy Access spreadsheet :p) I'm not sure which way round they were on the bill - and not knowing, or remembering, much about Garrison it's hard for me to recall.

Anyway, over 19 years ago I first went to the Astoria for a gig. Over the best part of the following two decades I've been a frequent visitor to both the Astoria and her smaller sister venue a couple of doors down (who has so any name changes over the years but most recently has been known as the LA2 I believe).

Not only did I go to many gigs at both venues I also spent quite a few nights clubbing at both venues. The Astoria was home, back in the late 80's and early 90's, to Londons best Rock Club 'Rockscene' and I spent many Friday nights alternating between the Electric Ballroom's "Full Tilt Club" and "Rocksecene" before Rocksecene eventually closed in favour of The Pink Pounder, which became London's biggest Gay club and then transformed its name to simply G.A.Y years later.

LA2 has also been home to many different clubs that I attended. I remember by first being Buzbys - a Sunday night rock club which I kept missing the last train back from due to London Transports then silly early last train on Sunday evenings (about 11pm). Plus it was on a school night so missing the last train was even more annoying. Over the years I've been to other rock clubs there along with Indie and Goth clubs plus tons of great gigs.

Tonight The Astoria is playing host to it's last ever gig. Tomorrow night LA2 is closing its doors for good.

Both are being demolished to make way for London's Crossrail link.

So thank you Astoria and thank you LA2. Thank you for being part of my life for thye last twenty years and giving me some great memories.

You will both be missed.

In memory of you both I've listed the bands I've seen at both venues. Thanks to SteveGB for giving me that idea.

London will be poorer without you both.

The Astoria - Bands Seen

All About Eve

Cecil

Clawfinger

CNN

CNN

Crazyhead

Cubanate

Dare

Dawn, The

Die Krupps

Dresden Dolls, The

Ed Allyne Johnson

Enter Shikari

Evamescence

Faith No More

Fields of the Nephilim

Fischerspooner

Front 242

Front Line Assembly x2

Garbage

Garrison

Gary Numan x2

 Giant Drag

Glasshouse

Godflesh

Greenhaus

Headswim

Honeycrack

Horati, The

Inertia

Ivories, The

Kharma 45

Khula Shaker

Ladytron

Leechwoman

Live

Lost Prophets

Mando Diao

MESH

Moonspell

Nefilim

New Model Army x6

New York Alcoholic Anxiety Attack

Nightwish

Nine Inch Nails

Nozzle

Paradise Lost x2

Pecadiloes, The

Power of Dreams

Presidents of the USA

Protocol

Rico

Rossette Stone

Sheep on Drugs x2

Silversun

Simon Warner

Sisters of Mercy

Skinny Puppy

Sneaker Pimps x2

Space

Span

Sulphur

Terrorvision

The Automatic

The Bravery

 The Long Blondes

The Mission x4

Type O Negative x2

Vitriolique

Vivid

Void Construct

Warrior Soul



 



The LA2 - Bands Seen

All About Eve

Atari Teenage Riot

Bif Naked

Cardiacs x2

Comptuorgirl

Covenant

Cranium HF

Cubanate

Dandys, The

Devilish Presley

Diary of Dreams

Die Krupps

Dream City Film Club

Droids, The

Faces of Sarah

Frog

Goteki

Inkubus Sukkubus

Kinetik

KMFDM

Leechwoman

Life of Agony

Manuskript

Melanie Garside

Midnight Configuration

Mission, The

NFD x2

Panic DHH

Pitchshifter

Puressence

Rancho Diablo

RuthRuth

Scary Bitches

Sheep on Drugs x3

Spank Organisation

Theatres des Vampyres

Ugly Kid Joe

Voices of Masada

Waltari

Xlover

XPQ21

 

.


Comments

( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
madwitch
Jan. 14th, 2009 09:30 pm (UTC)
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaail!

God, I am so sad about this. The Astoria was such a huge part of my social life when I first moved to London, some of my dearest friends I met there. Upstairs in the bar, with the horrible heel-sucking carpet.
lareinemisere
Jan. 14th, 2009 10:36 pm (UTC)
Controversial...
The LA2/Mean Fiddler I'll miss, but I'll be glad to see the back of the Astoria. I hated it as a venue so much that I decided a couple of years ago that I'd only go there again to see a band I'd 1) never seen before and 2) HAD to see. Luckily for me, that combination never showed up.

The closure means that I might actually get to go to a NMA December gig for the first time in years...
actualsean
Jan. 14th, 2009 10:37 pm (UTC)
Among others:
Suede - Their last gig.
Muse - Playing to about 15 people when they were small.
Marc Almond - My first proper gig.
Blur - Without Graham.
David Bowie - I am very very lucky to have had the chance to be there.

Yoshie saw so many, including The Cure.

I particularly liked the look of the seedy street behind it too. And it had good sound.
spangle_kitten
Jan. 15th, 2009 10:04 am (UTC)
You can remember that kind of stuff?
angusabranson
Jan. 15th, 2009 11:18 am (UTC)
I kept a list (and most of my tickets) from the first gig I went to until the mostrecent. I've even got them computerized up to the end of 2005 :p

So less my memory and more my anal retentive list keeping :p
eryx_uk
Jan. 15th, 2009 12:46 pm (UTC)
I've only been to the Astoria once, and that was in 1988 to see a Canadian thrash metal metal called Annihilator. Was only the once but was a great time.
felineparadox
Jan. 15th, 2009 06:36 pm (UTC)
It's always a shame when a venue closes, are there new ones to replace it? Edinburgh just seems to be getting worse and worse when it comes to clubs/live venues :/
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )

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