I am embarrassed to admit it, folks, but as a music and art afficionado, it was my first time at the Middle East Downstairs in Central Square this past Saturday, for an excellent and eclectic show from Mean Creek, Drug Rug, and others.
As my friend put it,” What a great city we live in! We just saw an amazing show that was as good as a concert anywhere else, for 12 bucks!”
I thought the Middle East Downstairs was surprisingly atmospheric and, well, hip! It had columns, stained glass windows, good lighting, and a floor reminiscent of a roller-derby or jitterbug days. It has a lived in, well-worn sort of feel that makes you want to relax, have a PBR, and get into the music, maybe while dressed in plaid or something from American Apparel. It helped that it was packed with hipsters, art-school types, and young, creative people with outfits and haircuts I will probably be trying to emulate in days to come. The acoustics were good, though not great. Once it was packed with people it was better, but some of the less experienced bands, who don’t realize how important sound adjustments are to their sound (duh) just crank up the volume so that even if you screamed someone a foot away still couldn’t hear you ( I tried it).
The music itself was great though–a really good show. I would definitely go again. Though next I will be hitting up the Middle East Upstairs, which is not in fact, the Middle East itself, where there is always music inside the picture window, and it is not above the Middle East, but is down two doors at the other Middle East and at the back by the bathrooms and up the stairs above Zuzu…why they don’t just give the places completely different names is beyond me, but then, that might kill the eclectic treasure-hunt quality of establishments that Boston has refined so well….
photo credit: Mean Creek at the Middle East. www.jessicahutfless.com