Wednesday, November 23, 2005

What's On: Russendisko at Kaffee Burger

Seeing as P. stole my political clothes this evening, the next installment of Merkel-watch from this lap-top will have to come another time. So instead I wanted to give those in Berlin this weekend a head's up for the Russendisko night at Kaffee Burger.

Russendisko is a night that belongs to (but not exclusively) DJ/writer, all round szene-superstar Vladimir Kaminer. Kaminer came to Berlin not long after the wall came down, a period chronicled entertainingly in his book that goes by the almost-the-same-as-his-club-night name of 'Russian Disco'. Whilst the book is worth a read, Russendisko the club night is worth a dance, and there is no better place than its spiritual home at Kaffee Burger.

The Kaffee Burger on the Torstrasse (U2 - Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz) is a venue that will one day deserve a post of its own, but for now let's leave you with the words: hot, sweaty, packed, DDR-chic. That just about covers it. Most nights at the Kaffee Burger are worth the entry fee, whether it is French poets, surf music, or experimental film, but Russendisko is the standard bearer for what nights out can be like, not just there but anywhere.

The place will be packed, the walls will be dripping. People will drink and dance and kiss and fall against each other and eventually end up out on the street blinking in the Saturday sunshine, perhaps with a new friend or two. After one legendary night at the Russendisko a Polish women invited myself and a friend back to her 'cabin by the lake'. As long as we paid the S-Bahn fare. We never went.

The music? I call it Russianpunkfolkcriminaldiskodiva. And if Vladimir likes that, he can use it.

Kaminer and his co-DJ Yuriy Gurzhy have even put out a CD, the tracklisting of which may be obscure, but will give you some sense of what they all about.

On Saturday I'll be the guy wearing the beige cord suit, by the bar. Buy me a beer.

Russendisko with DJs Kaminer & Gurzhy at Kaffee Burger
Saturday 26th November
Torstrasse 60, 10119 Berlin, U2 and Tram M8 Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz
Opens at 10pm

4 Comments:

Blogger BerlinBear said...

I shan't be there Saturday, as I'm in Trier, but GOD I love Russendisko, and I love Vladimir Kaminer. I even exchanged emails with him once, and he gave me permission to publish a translation of one his short stories, no questions asked. Top man! And I also love your description of the music, very fitting. One point: unless I'm very much mistaken Vladimir came to (East) Berlin just *before* the wall came down, no?

12:58 am  
Blogger P. said...

Gunther?

I guess he's sleeping. Anyaway, as far as I recall he came after the wall came down but before unification - i.e. one of the last acts of the DDR was to offer the 'right of return' to jews in Russia, and Kaminer had a Jewish grandpa or something.

But I'll check...

9:04 am  
Blogger P. said...

That was quick...from the Russendisko website, Kaminer page:

Seit 1990 lebt er mit seiner Frau und seinen beiden Kindern in Berlin.

So in that strange period between the fall of the wall and the final collapse of the DDR...must have been one hell of an interesting time.

9:07 am  
Blogger BerlinBear said...

Ah, so that was it. Thank you for clarifying, and my apologies to Gunther for being a doubting Thomas.

7:42 pm  

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