Category Archives: Drinks

HAPPY BIRTHDAY PSYCHO!

I feel like telling you a short story, about my favorite joint in Barcelona, Psycho R&R Club.

Early June 2010, I was at Moog, a venue in Barcelona, about to enjoy a show of The Lizards, one of my favorite local bands, when Charly introduced me to Ricard as his associate. I didn’t have any idea about him having business, he’s not such kind of guy, thus I had to be clarified. They were opening a new rock club in a month, close to one of the hottest musical spots in town, Apolo, a two venue complex where many great gigs are scheduled and clubbing nights are a reference for hipsters, tourists and party animals. Great strategy, plus, as far as I was acquainted, being dj’s and popular in the local scene, plus rock as the main philosophy the club was to follow, success was almost guaranteed.

It felt like yesterday when I was visiting the guys at the club after The Gaslight Anthem show, the night before the grand opening, and everything was chaos. It was then when I met the third partner in crime, Gonzalo, who asked me for cigarettes and took some sips from my warm beer. We got on well right away. The situation was close to drama, so I volunteered to help them the following day after working. And I did it.

The 3-4 hours some friends spent hand to hand cleaning the whole place, assembling stools, organizing the bar, collecting garbage and having everything ready, were insane and super intense, but hey! We all made it on time, and I’m proud of being part of that. As Gonzalo was saying, we all remember it in a romantic way, but if we stop thinking about the whole situation, it was crazy.

As all the early stages of business, clubs and everything, there are many technical issues to be sorted out till you are on the run. As the time has passed, the joint has been capturing its essence, full of decoration referring to bands and films I love and grew up with, thus it’s a warming place, and I’m not talking about the nonstop problems with air conditioning system, but with the feeling of being at home among friends. Whenever I’m at Psycho I feel welcome, if you know what  I mean.

They also sorted things out regarding dj’n sessions permissions, and now they have full booked monthly program, featuring many guest dj’s and lots of styles, from punk rock to funky, soul, garage and r&b.

First time I was invited to dj on my own there were technical problems as most people play music with laptops aor vinyls. I use CD’s and one of the players didn’t work that night. Thus, my actual debut was on New Year’s Eve, for closing the night, and everything was fantastic that time. I enjoyed a second night on my own in February, which was also great, but you know, it’s great and funnier to have a partner in crime, thus, since April, Dra Feelgood and I have provided the punk rock, hard rock, stoner, 90’s and other sounds fix Psycho Rock N’ Roll club required.

It was Ricard who christened us as Las Tetis, aka The Titties, and to be honest, we fuckin’ love this business card, which everybody easily remembers…so it’s great.

It’s been one year since Psycho opened its doors, and it’s alive and kicking, being a hot spot and a point of reference in the rock scene in Barcelona, and considering the times we’re living, this city focusing on tourist and fashion bars and clubs oriented, and the “retirement” of rock n’ roll places, it’s really to be praised the efforts  and passion Charly, Ricard and Gonzalo, have put on this enterprise, I wish we can celebrate for many more years.

I’ll never be grateful enough for allowing me and Veronica to be part of their dream, making me the official guinea pig of mojitos, BEST IN TOWN, when they learned to prepare them, and being the source and play of amusement for so many crazy and unforgettable nights.

And finally, this weekend’s been celebration nonstop and Las Tetis had their time yesterday playing some tunes to warm up the night ahead. Pure fun!

We’ve been requested to create a page on Facebook where we’ll announce future events we’re involved in so, everybody is updated. I’ll let you know in case you’re interested, and you, yeah you! in case you visit Barcelona for some days, you MUST visit this place. Here’s the link to Facebook

And here is the playlist of the songs I played yesterday, short but intense, as Female Trouble and Ficus No Dj had to make us dance and sweat afterwards

URGE OVERKILL TEQUILA SUNDAE
THE DONNAS IT’S ON THE ROCKS
RADIO BIRDMAN DESCENT INTO THE MAELSTROM
THE YO-YO’S HEAD OVER HEELS
MICHAEL MONROE NO FAKIN’ IT
FU MANCHU MONGOOSE
L7 DRAMA
BACKYARD BABIES ROBBER OF LIFE
DANZIG SNAKES OF CHRIST
THE BLACK CROWES GO FASTER
TOILET BOYS CAN’T WAIT
TURBONEGRO ARE YOU READY?
THE MONARCHS 2001

DAMN YOU, JÄGERMEISTER!!!

Sometimes I think shots should be forbidden. Probably some friend reading this is right now giggling and thinking I’m passing through one of these episodes of regret. Well, it’s not exactly that, although it’s true I’m having lots lately, but they are for free, they are invitations…what can I say? I was one of these smokers supporting non-smoking bars…sometimes you dislike something but keep on doing it until there’s some kind of law, rule or whatever that forces you quit doing it. Well, I’d like alcohol shoots were banned.

Think of it, if you don’t get them for free, you have to pay for a round, because most times we do shots as a kind of celebration, or when we are under the influence of alcohol usually surrounded by friends in the same condition.

A shot is too quick, and very painful, as it’s the alcohol without mixing and horribly warm. I find whiskey or rum in shots disgusting, and tequila is fine thanks to the salt and lemon ritual, but urgh! Everybody seems to hate them, so at the end of the day, this ritual makes no sense.

Let’s talk about Jägermeister, my current pleasure and pain in the shape of a shot.

Funny to read this German liquor was originally developed by a hunter (Jägermeister means hunt-master) as a digestif and cough remedy. In Spain such strong liquors are named orujo and I usually hate them.

Created in 1935, I think their successful marketing campaign focused on metal and rock bands, sponsoring many festivals and events, made we, young-mid people mostly interested in such music styles, got acquainted with this liquor. Moreover, the attractive logo showing this deer and the cross caught our attention right away.

First time I tasted it was at Azkena Rock Festival 3-4 editions ago. We were constantly given free tickets so it was about time to check this weird and trendy liquor. It tasted like shit! This initial sweet flavour followed by a burning feeling coming down your throat was too much. I thought it’d be the perfect remedy against dropping temperatures at night, and perhaps had one or two more, only as a warmer, but it took me long time to repeat the experience.

Seems like I’m hanging out by cool rock places, because from time to time I see myself involved in these crazy Jägermeister parties, having a couple of test-tubes. Of course I’ve been given tees, stickers and different merch items. I could reject the invitation as many others, but I give up and surrender to temptation. You know alcohol often weakens your willpower…

It was one week ago, after enjoying this Bat Sabbath show performed by Cancer Bats, with The Eyes A.D opening for them playing amazing covers of Sepultura, some friends, together with the bands were IN one of the most popular discos in Barcelona, Apolo, for the Nasty Mondays weekly party for free. The idea was to have just a beer and head back home as I had to get my stuff ready for the trip to Madrid, but someone started giving us shots of this evil brew, and came back home completely wasted.

Believe me, the following day I was knackered, hit by massive hangover with a terrible headache and the sense of memory gaps. I’m not gonna tell you what happened inside a plane with air conditioning off for half an hour, you can imagine  it wasn’t too funny.

This reminds me of a quote by a freak character on TV named Carlos Jesus who used to say “Today you laugh, tomorrow you will cry”. That asshole was sometimes right.

Jägermeister should include some kind of warning, and I’m not referring to Alcohol can harm your health, but advise some limit. Now I’m aware of mine.

Friends, don’t be seduced by those parties with tubes for free, tees, and funny Polaroids and beware, Jägermeister is the liquor of the Devil, in case something happens to you, never say I didn’t warn you.

Bloody Hell! Buy me a beer or a rum n’ coke, but keep me away of that!

COOL JOINTS – IN DREAMS CAFE

Few days ago, my friend Jaume suggested I should also talk about cool places to have drinks or dinner, or whatever. I thought it might be a good idea, but lately I’m not going out so much due to my state of poverty.

My latest two discoveries in Madrid have made me decide that, from time to time, I’ll start recommending joints to crash in. The idea is to add some picks and highlight what I like most and why, far from creating  Zagat or Michelin guides, and my visits must not be necessarily recent. And I can tell you something for sure, I know maaany cool places.

Let’s get started.

I had heard about In Dreams Café in Madrid some months ago. All of a sudden, several people were telling me wonders about this place, so I needed to check it out last weekend. Saturday was the chosen day for having lunch and few cocktails before Michael Monroe’s show.

Truth is that we were all a bit hangover because Friday, intended to be a “light” night, ended up in the morning, and our stomachs were damaged, yet starving.

When we arrived, I had a crush on the joint immediately. It’s kind of a small  and cozy American diner, full of icons and very kitsch, with pink walls and red lights, full of retro furniture, leopard  and classic rock presence on every spot. It’s not that the place is dirt, no way, but you know, it reminded me of those NY venues and pubs, where you can see everything is in its place but there are certain details not taken care of, which make the joints special and unique. Don’t know how to explain it, certain rock places exude some sort of decadence which make them real, alive, and In Dreams Café made me have same feeling.

Good music, relaxing atmosphere, not only you can have amazing cocktails but also you can eat, and honestly, what I tasted was great. Dishes have glorious names, I had the veggie Pat Boone burger (yess, we veggies are welcome!), and my friends the Elvis burger, both served in these plastic baskets, as in the old American movies. The onion rings, OMG! They were unbelievable, and pity I wasn’t really hungry (I don’t usually eat much before a gig, and then this very often turns against me, allowing mayhem to step in), because desserts and milkshakes were very suggesting.

The girls, we had two Bloody Mary’s, including the celery stick, and it’s really cool waiters ask you how much you want your drink to be spicy, and Kiko, had an American, which tasted really good.

I find these all-in places fantastic, great atmosphere, allowing you to keep conversations filled up with great music, plus food and elaborated drinks are maaaarvelous.

You wanna know how much I liked the place? Let me tell you one thing, we came back for more Bloody Mary’s the day after. Convinced? That place is a must, wish there was something like that here, it’s a place the owner might have not invested millions on it, yet passion for American 50-60’s stuff is out of question. 

(In Dreams Cafe is in C/San Mateo 4, 28004 Madrid, close to Tribunal tube st.)

MISS BROWNSTONE AND DRA FEELGOOD STRIKE BACK

Yeah, that’s me with a friend dj’n at a really cool pub called Outsiders, here in Barcelona.

Since I met Dra Feelgood, we’re entertaining or at least trying it real hard with nice and cheerful songs. Most repertoire we select is rock, some parts are more easy listening and others real tough, still our main aim is YOU to have fun.

Remember, in case you cannot make it this Saturday, once in a month we’ll keep on burning cd’s for your pleasure.

Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri

Summertime in Barcelona, and I’m alone. As you can imagine my agenda is burning lately because I try to cover as many empty moments as possible meeting friends, until I get exhausted and decide to chill out a bit on my own, difficult moment though.

I love fresh beer, especially when served in a cool jar, but you know what happens when it’s over 30ºC, it gets warmed really quick and ends up tasting like cat’s pee. The Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri is a bit more expensive alternative, but everybody I know who’s tasted falls in love with it. It’s tasty, refreshing and although you don’t notice alcohol level immediately, after a while you enter in a state of bliss I strongly recommend.