From Iceland — Iceland Airwaves 2009 Venues

Iceland Airwaves 2009 Venues

Published October 13, 2009

Hafnarstræti 1-3
Even during the day it can be dark inside Batteríið, but this can be a
good thing because the space looks larger than it actually is. The bar
itself is short, which sometime leads to annoying waiting times, but
around 600 ISK a pop, you can afford at least a few beers. The stage is
centrally located, which means there are plenty of vantage points from
which to catch the act. MZ

Fríkirkjuvegur 5
What’s not great about experiencing music in the midst of majestic
arches, mighty gold crosses, candelabras and paintings of Jesus with
arms outstretched and whatnot? Concerts in Fríkirkjan can be heavenly;
the acoustics are truly amazing as is the beauty of the church. Just be
prepared for some low key, laid back action. Beware of the narrow
benches on the balcony, even though this happens to be the best
location for viewing. LP

Grand Rokk
Smiðjustígur 6
Something about Grand Rokk elicits the traditional feel of a haphazard
neighborhood pub. Upstairs is a nice contrast to the homeliness of
below—there’s a solid stage and enough room to fit a crowd of nearly a
hundred. As for the bathrooms—quantity beats quality but that’s good
enough for us. MZ

Austurstræti 20
This daytime diner turns into a nighttime hotspot for unplugged acts.
The long bar and show-space at the back of the room make it okay to get
a beer, but kind of hard to get to the bathroom. Beer is reasonably
priced, but not particularly cheap. Get there early if you have any desire for seating. RL

Vonarstræti 3
Built in 1897, the historical theatre by the pond is a small and
charming show-room with an above average capacity. It’s like NASA’s
baby sister. Its 19th Century chic décor is well reflected in the price
of drinks. Bathrooms can be a bit of a wait. The place can be wonderful
to experience live music in, provided the place isn’t too crowded and
the soundperson doesn’t suck. RL

Austurstræti 9
The self-described “only club in town” is an out of control dancerama.
Drinks are fairly average price for the city, but they frequently have
specials on mixes. The women‘s washroom is like a makeup bomb went off
in there and the men‘s room is often a breeding ground for
cock-measuring quarrels. There is still no better place to hear
electronic music. RL

Listasafn Reykjavíkur
Tryggvagata 17
Once a year, The Reykjavík Art Gallery is transformed into Airwaves’
largest venue, hosting some of the bigger acts Airwaves has to offer.
Drinks are fairly expensive, but hey, it’s a classy gallery and you’re
partying among masterpieces so what the heck. Expect some of the
wildest dancing in town and general insanity, with a taste of posh. LP

This music venue/nightclub is a steady Airwaves favourite. There’s a
bunch of sane madness going on with just the right amount of rowdiness.
On the downside, it’s not the best place to get wasted for cheap, as
drinks are on expensive side. The ladies room offers a fair amount of
elbow shoving and catfights, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing if
you’re up for some drama. LP

Tryggvagata 22
Sódóma translates to Sodom, but don’t be misled; there’s no more – or
less – sodomy here than in most other bars in town. Climb the dark
stairwell and enter a fairly large floor bordered by a few tables.
Beers are moderately priced, and if you can shove your way outside
there’s a covered balcony where the nicotine-minded can get their fix.
The piece de resistance has to be the men’s bathroom, where patrons are
invited to piss on the portraits of the banksters. MZ

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