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LondonNet Clubs Guide

LondonNet Club Night Review


Clandestino

Featuring: Miss Jools, Rap Saunders, and Luca Elle

Clandestino (2nd birthday party, 7 November 2004)
1st Sunday of the month, 10PM-6AM, 15UKP, 12UKP concessions
Genre: House
AKA and the End
18 West Central Street
London
WC1A 1 JJ
Tube: Tottenham Ct. Rd. and Holborn
Click here to check schedule!


Eye Candy for the exclusive everyman
Clandestino has an identity crisis, but remains entertaining ...

LEAVE IT UP to the AKA and the End to brew up a night like "Clandestino". The indignity of epic, seemingly unceasing queues are made up for by epic, seemingly unceasing entertainment. Even the queues are entertaining, as bizarre street entertainers relieve frustration. On the night's 2nd birthday (7 November), a guy who appeared to be dressed as a matador, drinking wine and doing acrobatic gymnastic stunts provided this spark. No one knew whether he actually worked for AKA and the End or not, and no one seemed to particularly care - it made the wait easier.

Inside, Clandestino is worth the delay. It successfully takes advantage of one of the things that makes the End/AKA such a great club complex, providing three rooms with different vibes and different music to rope in those with short attention spans for at least a few hours.

AKA provides two levels of a chilled-out, relaxing mix of R&B and House with fierce and precise live bongo drumming to spice things up. The décor matches the music fairly well with typically bright, warm, glowing colours. The second level has plenty of couches to relax or a balcony to people watch. The night attracts a cosmopolitan crowd as London itself, and it's not uncommon to hear languages other than English spoken. While the crowd is attractive and young it isn't needlessly elite or posh, the fashionable mix with fashion victims, those in silk shirts with those in t-shirts, jeans, and trainers. There are sometimes a few too many fashion mullets for anyone's good taste, but there's still an appreciative level of variety.

The lounge at the End offers up its usual fare, dancier R&B and old funk, for those in the mood to groove, but not to lose their mind. The most surprising feature of the club might be the main room at the End. Far from the tremendously thundering big beat that can threaten to blow the roof off the building, on Clandestino's birthday, it was a more natural progression towards faster, more aggressive music. The floor started un-crowded, but as the night wore on, eventually there was enough of a massive thump to show that even on a night of more relaxed house music, the dance floor in the main room of the End is a fiery place to be.

Things aren't perfect. There was a queue on the way out, the usual Pizza Express menu isn't available on Sundays and the beer is still a little pricey. On the other hand, Clandestino is ideal for those with a bit of money who seek entertaining eye candy, variety, and thicker, mellower house music.

Steve Marshall

 

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