Wednesday, October 10, 2007

The Spitz RIP

So, despite the endless petition signatures, the leafleting, the articles in newspapers, and even the pleas by dear old Red Ken Livingstone, it wasn't enough for the Spitz to close, the latest victim of the area's corporatisation (though the venue has done stuff since at Rich Mix). I guess the sight of people making weird left-field experimental music at an interesting venue in a perfect location was just to much to bare for Ballymore Properties, who would prefer the an anodyne wine bar full of city yuppies. Although CBGB's had reportedly become a parody of its former self near the time it was shut down, you could almost draw parallels: the two areas around the Spitz and CBGB's are accelerating in the property market, and live music is always going to be the casualty (particularly once the new East London line is built). This is no place for nostalgia about what both venues have gave their respective cities in terms of culture or an arts scene. Obviously the Spitz was only one venue in London. But it was pretty much the best venue. Anyway, nostalgia doesn't count for anything when you have a prime location near the financial district. Who wants to listen to that unlistenable music when you can have an All Bar One? It's not like that area is lacking in investment bankers / lawyers etc to frequent the posh bars spouting up, of which the Spitz's replacement on that site will be one.
Another nail in the coffin for an independent scene in London, then (along with the Hammersmith Palais - another great venue). Still, there's always Starbucks across the road...
Anyway on a more serious note, the spirit of the Spitz lives on in part just down the road, at a great venue called the Gramaphone. And there's the Duke of Uke and the new Rough Trade East, to remind me why I still go to the area.

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