Posts Tagged ‘Low’

Checking Out The Bell House

September 24, 2008


So what’s the verdict on The Bell House? Well, the short story is it’s fucking fantastic. Converted from an old warehouse in Gowanus, The Bell House has a nice rustic aesthetic, not too dissimilar from it’s sister watering hole, Union Hall, although it really feels more like someone added about 10,000 square feet to Quarter Bar in Greenwood Heights. The venue is divided between a homey bar in the front and a large performance space in the back. The draft selection at the bar was impeccable (Smuttyhouse on draft? Hell yes.) and the drinks were pretty fairly priced, with a pint of Sixpoint’s Hop Obama coming in at $5 and cans of beer at $4 dollars. At a venue in this city, those prices are pretty damn good.

But the owners really outdid themselves in the back room. Although extremely spacious, the performance space feels intimate, with a low stage, beautiful chandeliers, and rafters that give the post-industrial warehouse a decidedly pre-industrial vibe. The acoustics sounded great for a relaxed three piece like Low (who were, by the way, on their shit last night). Although it will be interesting to see how a louder band like The Veils handles the venue when the play on Oct. 3rd.

The only real problem I see the venue running into is its location. For Manhattanites, Gowanus is unexplored territory, and despite its safety, a lot of veteran Brooklynites still associate the neighborhood it with the infamous Gowanus Projects (which, I may note, are nowhere near the venue, and are a lot safer than the commenters at Brownstoner make them out to be). It’ll be great for the neighborhood if the venue can start drawing new people below 4th Ave., but only time will tell if that happens. Regardless, I’ll be there.

Photos/schedule below the cut. (more…)


Tonight: Low @ The Bell House

September 23, 2008


Though I missed the venue’s first show this past weekend, I’ve been eagerly awaiting the opening of The Bell House, the latest club from the same guys that brought us Union Hall. And what better way to get the know the place than with a special performance by the slowcore three piece Low?

Although The Bell House’s location is probably a safe enough distance away from the crotchety Park Slopers who almost closed down Union Hall last May, it’ll be interesting to see if The Bell House can survive in the neighborhood. In my experience, most residents of the Slope are wary of venturing below 4th Ave. — except for an adventurous few looking to “slum it” in Red Hook on Sunday morning for IKEA and food vendors. Considering the venue’s location between 3rd and 2nd Avenues on 7th St., I wouldn’t put much money on a big Stroller Mafia turnout (after the Community Board 6 debacle, that’s probably a good thing). And most Williamsburg/Greenpoint hipsters are too lazy to actually use their fancy bikes to head south of Flushing Ave. Perhaps they’re hoping to tap the limited disposable income of the growing Greenwood Heights-Sunset Park hipster crowd? Only time will tell.

[Low @ The Bell House]