Inspired by the “boîtes” of the '70s and '80s, KER is Barcelona's new 1200-capacity club from the creators of Elrow and Monegros Festival. Rising to fill the gap left by the closure of Viladecans at Row 14, the terrace space utilized by Elrow each week, the venue aims to bring high-end dance music to a city already steeped in house and techno heritage.
“KER will still be focused on electronic music, be it techno, house, minimal, nu disco...” says Juan Arenas, the lifeblood and heir to the Arenas dynasty and its legacy of club brands (Elrow, Florida 135, Monegros). “But maybe a little bit more underground focused. New talent. We might also showcase more live acts.”
So far, Art Department, Audion (live), Vakula, Martinez Brothers and DJ Harvey have all been called in to bring a touch of class to Barcelona's already thriving club scene, led from the front by a team of promoters that've already played host to the leading names of the underground circuit, the likes of Richie Hawtin, Loco Dice and Luciano, while carving out a reputation as one of the world's most fun sources for a fiesta.
But where Elrow brought inflatables and colourful floats to the party and Monegros brings the bigger end of the electronic spectrum to a Spanish desert every year, KER has its eyes on a sleek, comfortable setting, where people can relax while they rave, rather than go categorically mental. Could it be the minds behind Elrow are growing up, embracing deeper, more understated sounds — dare we say, maturing?
“The Elrow brand will continue with events in Ibiza; outside of Spain, in France, Italy, UK and maybe back in Barcelona at some point.” says Juan. “KER is a different concept from Elrow. Much more focused on the music, the quality of service, maybe catering to an older audience than Elrow.”
Kitted with a Clearsound, the two rooms of KER — a main room and 250-capacity cocktail bar — will balance big room action with the more chilled, funkier vibe of the back room, where emerging local DJs will serve as a worthy foil to top-notch international talent in a setting with a chic, vintage feel. “We intend to bring quality artists and new talents to Barcelona, as well as support local DJs,” Juan explains.
“We tried to see how clubs used to be in the past, more intimate, a more 'feel at home' atmosphere, where the client is the most important person. It´s not an easy thing to do, but we hope the design of the club will convey this feeling and that the staff will also emphasize this concept as well!”
With DJ Qu, Richy Ahmed, Robert James, Delano Smith and much more planned for December, the tunes aren't going to be that bad either.
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