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 4 reviews

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6 Upper York Street,

(0117) 942 6208 

The ViewBristol Review

Review byHeather Morgan13/02/2009
Bristol's biggest underground club, with a capacity of more than 1,000. Packed full of happy hardcore ravers this is not your average nightclub. If you've got enough energy to stay up till dawn you may witness a bit of tea and toast action in the chill out room.

The Venue
So huge you'll probably get lost the first few times you go there. It has three storeys parting off into four dance rooms, a large balcony over-looking the main dance area, and a chill out room at the top. There's also a comfy seating area is in the first room next to the bar, and a second bar on the second floor.

The smoking area is the size of a small carpark and there's a snack van parked inside it selling hot-dogs and burgers to help keep your energy levels up until the early hours of the morning. Most nights go on until the 6am, 7am or even 8am, so you'll need it. The only thing is, there's not much seating out there, only an old rug on some concrete, however they do put up a marquee to shelter you from the elements.

Another thing about Lakota is the dirt and grime. All over the wall and floors there are traces of old sweat, mud (?) and all sorts of spillages. In all honesty, it looks like it hasn't ever been cleaned, but it is a converted warehouse, so being a bit rough round the edge is to be expected.

Don't let this put you off though, most of the people inside are so busy dancing and drinking they don't even notice. However, don't wear shoes you intend on keeping.

Nights out usually cost between £10 to £12. This may seem expensive but when you sum the night up it's a tenner for eight hours of non-stop music from a DJ, a huge smoking area, and seating areas. And it feels more like a hangout spot than a nightclub.

And Lakota's imminent closure (whispers have been going around for ages) has been put off by the credit crunch and the housing slump. Plans to demolish it to make way for flats are still on the cards, but until the economy starts going up Lakota won't be coming down.

The People
Three words - happy hardcore ravers. These are the friendliest bunch you'll ever meet in a club, and everyone acts as if they're your new best friend. They are always handing out the free hugs. Every now and again you'll get a group of lairy chav lads but just keep out their way.

Most of the time the atmosphere is euphoric yet strangely tranquil. Staff behind the bar are always friendly enough too. But the bouncers, they look very angry but that's part of the job. Just keep off their feet on the dancefloor!

The Music
A large variety of club promoters regulary hire out Lakota. Tribe of Frog, Psykotic and Shit the Bed to name but a few. The only nights they don't run are garage, but if you're into any other form of underground dance this may well be your mecca.

Tribe of Frog is at the end of every month and this sees Lakota's black walls transformed into multicoloured fluroscent UV colours in all sorts of shapes and sizes. This is a night for those who love their psytrance. If you can stand the heavy bass all night long, there is no doubt you'll have an amazing night.

The music on other nights is general underground DJs mixing drum 'n' bass, jump up drum 'n' bass, dubstep, hardcore, trance, trip hop, house, electro and techno. So you have a large variety to pick from. Just ensure you pick a good night because sometimes the place doesn't fill out and it can seem like a bit of a waste of money.

The Drink
Not really the kind of place for a heavy drinking session because drinks are quite expensive and there isn't a huge range. Cans of Red Stripe are £3, or there's Stella, also £3, or Carling and Mac cider for £2.50.

Basic drinks like vodka and lemonade cost £3, but on a student night it's £3 for a house double and mixer. The music is the reason you go, definitely not the drink.

The Last Word
Lakota is the place for you if you're seriously into the underground dance scene. The music and the people you meet is what will make your night. If you're quite fussy about cleanliness then this might not be the right place for you, but definitely give it a chance, you never know what to expect once you get inside.

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Content updated: 12/12/2010 14:13