Chapter 2 – My Rave Renaissance
Right off the bat, the headline is a bit misleading. I do not in fact, nor did I ever, consider myself a raver. The alliteration just sounded too good to not use in a headline. Nevertheless, there still is some truth in the phrase, as my party going has spent a good year-and-a-half in hibernation and has only had its revival just some months ago.
When I moved up north 4 years ago, I did what every fresher would do — use any night available to migrate from one club to the other. Something quite useful for this exploration of the concrete jungle was the annual Kommt Zusammen (“Come together”) festival on the Easter weekend. Back then, it featured concerts and parties all over the city, which has since been removed from the schedule to give more emphasis to workshops, exhibitions, shows etc. Out of the sweaty vaults of the Studenten Keller, via the free beer-tuesdays at ST-club, I survived countless student-parties (without lasting physical scars, but very well with countless lasting memories). With time, I expanded my territories to more interesting locations. Still, I suddenly grew tired of this pastime for a number of reasons and laid most of my party ambitions on ice.
Fast-forward to last winter. In the past 18 months, I had dodged most invitations to head out and the my friends’ kitchens had turned into my most frequented ‘taverns’. On this particular night, I came home from some beers with friends and visited my good friend and neighbor to have a good-night cigarette. She, however, was just about to leave for a drum n bass party at the club where she works and frequently goes for a rave. Don’t ask me how, but she managed to convince me to give it a shot again. This night at JAZ was the starting point for my party revival. Certainly, her being an emerging DJane and being able to get me on the guest list, was a key encouragement. My newly found excitement could not keep up with rave-aficionados like her, regardless, I now shall dare to give my assessment of Rostock’s offerings for a good night out.
For my personal gusto, two basic ways of partying have crystallized out of my past experiences. I may have used these terms synonymously in the past paragraphs, but to me there is a difference. On the one hand, there is the rave – dancing my soul out of my body to the thundering beats of techno and drum n bass, losing myself in the waves of mesmerizing sound to at some point emerge cleansed, when all sweat, sorrow and energy is drained from me. I usually seek and find these cathartic experiences at such locations as the JAZ, Bunker or Peter-Weiss-Haus, with the re-occuring Friek Out or Grim Panda Sessions or special events. So far, I haven’t managed to check out the more insider venues like Kraftwerk or Alte Zuckerfabrik, but they have reserved spots on my Rostock-bucket list, owning to the intriguing stories I have heard about them.
Alternatively, I consider partying as a group experience. While I do of course also go to a rave with some friends, on the dance floor everyone usually dives into the experience on their own, but then with the occasional glimpse to check out, if everyone is ok. Quite different are those nights at for example ST-club or Peter-Weiss-Haus again, when we as a group stay together at most times. We then celebrate ourselves and everyone around to funky tunes of the 80s and 90s, or whatever other familiar songs they decide to play. The main purpose of this would be to have fun with your friends, to interact, and to enjoy the moment together.
However limited Rostock’s party scene might be in comparison with major cities like Berlin, Hamburg or Leipzig, it does offer quite a variety and I encourage you to try out some spots until you have found your niches, just like I did.