No publicity please!

by James Glazebrook

We’ve just got back from being denied entry to C-Club, because they wouldn’t let us in with Zoë’s camera. At first, the bouncers didn’t seem sure about the venue’s policy, but one of them soon arrived at a rule he was happy to enforce: no large cameras, only small point-and-shoots. Of course, we were welcome to leave our grand’s-worth of gear here, he said, gesturing towards a plastic box at his feet right next to the door. He’d give us a number and everything – “it will be safe”.

What really bites is that we would have been allowed entry if we were on the press list. The only reason we weren’t was that I deliberately chose to buy tickets, to put money in the pockets of one of my favourite bands, Innerpartysystem (a fledgling group who, in this tough climate, have already been dropped by one major label). I would have posted Zoë’s photos here, and written a no-doubt glowing review (they’re amazing live) for BANG BANG BERLIN.

But it turns out the venue doesn’t want the publicity. I don’t know about headliners 3OH!3, but IPS are smart enough to know about the power of both fans (which has kept them alive) and good content. This is a band whose punning Never Be Content EP was launched with a video, below, all about the potential of media, marketing and advertising – albeit for harm. They know that the more words and images “out there” about them, the better.

So this must be the venue’s policy. But it doesn’t appear on their website, their tickets or even on notices at their doors. And they’re using is as a reason to turn people away, while tickets are left unsold at their box office. I understand why Berghain don’t allow cameras, because the lack of records of the superclub’s inside space actually adds to its legendary status (and leads to bonkers descriptions like this). But, Columbiahalle’s little sister venue is certainly not Berghain, nor are the clubs that are rumoured to be adopting similar policies. In fact, we don’t know what these places are like, because we aren’t going to them – and without any publicity, no-one else will.

So fuck you very much C-Club. Here’s hoping the city’s red tape chokes you off real soon.

Backstage at Berghain

Lucky for Berghain, it doesn’t need publicity – because photos like this (backstage) won’t help!

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