Sunday, December 19, 2010

Indie Guide Jakarta Nightlife: Monday Mayhem

Dancing Indie Rock and Electro in Jakarta

I asked on Facebook, is it possible to be hung over for 2 days? The general response was negative, but I begged to differ. The weekend had ended and I was still recovering from one of the best parties I've
done in Jakarta so far and stuck with a grin from ear to ear. I got to rock my macbook at the last Blackout Party, chugged from a tap behind the bar, then pumped with good times called for an afterparty which turned into a wild pool party  till 8 am Sunday morning. If you want unFacebookable memories just add a loud sound system, lots of shots, people in bathing suits (for the most part), mud baths and stir. Bam! Instant epic party. Come Monday though, I was still Struggles McGee (you know when you want to just lay your head on your desk and wish you could lie there forever?) and did not think I could stand another night of drinking ever again let alone that same day. Yet, the call of this supposedly awesome indie rock party beckoned me, and driven by curiosity and a complete lack of self control I went. Thank the gods I did.

I arrived at the event called Monday Mayhem and was greeted by red lips, combat boots, jean shirts, fringes, The Strokes.  I thought, Jakarta has done it again. Before my eyes was a stellar, non-pretentious yet mega fun indie rock party that would not soon be forgotten.  Before you can grasp how wickedly rare that is, let me rewind for  a second and put this city into context for you. For a tourist or someone who hasn't been out here for long, Jakarta appears to be filled with snobby try hard clubs crammed with hookers or people with their ego so far up their butt they forgot how to dance. The major places you'll be recommended when you arrive will probably be Dragonfly, Blowfish, X2, Immigrant, which are all fun in their own right (sort of), but not ideal for those into a more alternative and underground culture.

 Dress code warning. If you are thinking of wearing this for a Tiga show, do not. Unless you're a guy.  Disguise your blatant sexism a bit better, Blowfish. jeez.

As the whole mission of this blog begs, I am slowly mapping out that rad scene in Jakarta and after that Blowfish experience, the mission has been ever the more urgent. The newest addition to the Indie Guide: Monday Mayhem. Similar to the Blackout party (read about my first party O here), you'll find a more laid back taste in music, trendster types and unlike hipster kingdoms around the world, these kids like to DANCE. No pretension here in Jakarta + cool kids makes this party as enticing as Julian Assange's online dating profile (They blocked the actual link, darn. I'd totally call him).

This Monday Mayhem was held before the Muslim New Year holiday on Tuesday so it drew a massive gathering. There was a reasonable cover charge of 50 000 IDR and the ballin' venue it was held at made it completely worth it.  Akmani Hotel, which sort of looks like an evil empire filled with sleazy Russian business men from the outside, turns out to be the perfect mix of classy and tacky to be ironically cool (sort of like that lame Urban Outfitters website, which is purposely designed bad to be good..). Suede red couches, dark tiles mixed with funky neon lights gave it a vibe that I had not felt in Jakarta yet, moving closer to the classier scene you'd find in Paris like at Le Tigre.

Unlike the eclectic Blackout Parties, this event played mostly music from the rock genre which got everyone's heart pumping. From indie, to punk, to ska and even some metal in the main room it was a party to have pure fun at. A second DJ was in the outer room which apparently had some Indonesian rap and more varieties playing. Those DJ's were a show in themselves, dancing all over the place and having a great time while they did it. Warning: some serious moshing took place near the end of the night as the Ramones came on and other punkish hits, making me wish I could call up highschool Fel to dig out my old Vans sneakers (yes, I had a skater phase, who didn't?). I do wish that a certain portion of the crowd left their long greasy hair and black band t-shirts in the 90's (left) but unfortunately they missed that memo and drove the hard rock that the dj blasted for a small amount of time. Still lots of fun though.

Don't be deceived by the name though. Monday Mayhem is not a weekly phenomenon and happens sporadically and much less often than the Blackout Parties. It's rarity, like Chuck Bass in love, makes it that much sweeter and draws a full house of cool cats. Drinks were pretty expensive though, odd considering that there was cover charge (around 50 000 for a Bintang). Luckily, I couldn't stomach very many drinks that night as half ashamed, half proud memories of covering nude bodies in mud lingered in my memory from the weekend past, driven by a liquid motivation that was still lurching around my stomach. 

Anyways kids,  if you're down with indie rock, good style and lots of dancing you should get excited for the next one. A sincere Bravo to the organizers is in order. But when oh when can we expect it?

ps. A Personal Appeal from Founder Felicia

Can you believe it's almost been 1 year since this blog travel guide thing has been up and about? Well it's been doing pretty well, read in 341 cities around the world, MTV wanted to make it into a show (read here) and there is plenty to celebrate! I am an avid party goer but for the anniversary I am going to try to create the perfect party of everything we love. Hear me out, World. This blog is about finding the underground and trendy scene in partying, shopping, art right? So I want to throw a party this January that celebrates all that awesome shiz you find in a city, and in this case Jakarta.

I need your help though. I want an event that infuses culture with partying  so I am looking for a rad space to throw it in, not too large, like a gallery. I am also looking for artists of all types to be featured at the party, film makers, fashion designers, painters etc. If you are an artist in Jakarta or know of any spaces please contact me at . Also if you are interested in sponsoring or covering the event, you may contact me at the above address. Lastly, I need as many Indonesians and ex-pats in Jakarta to follow this blog, so please 'LIKE' this on facebook and pass it along to your posse. This is the most important part!!! Blackout Parties and now Monday Mayhem have been such an inspiration of what's possible in this city and with your help we're going to throw one of the coolest parties in Jakarta! I'm sort of nervous but I know we can help build a new kind of party out here, celebrating the best this city has to offer. Terima kasih, World!

More pics from Monday Mayhem

Being tossed around

 This indie party regular has some of the best style at everytime. Flower one piece with combat boots, yes please.

 Things go wrong at the end of the night. Mass exodus jams the elevator

Elevator party, obvi. Being crammed with a bunch of drunk people had the potential to cause to calm ourselves we make a photo shoot. No shortage of vanity here.

Finally use brute strength to pry the doors open after incessant ringing for help was not heard over the loud music. Freedom rocks.

Find your picture on Facebook 
or find more pics from this music photographer's blog, Irockumentary

If this is your sort of party, you'll also like..

Music: Sur la Planche

Sorry les enfants, I can't get enough of Parisian artists especially the up and coming ones.  If  La Femme produces more songs like this one they  will be massive, if they're not already..upbeat, retro rock n' roll and hot girl voice.

Download: Sur la Planche- La Femme. mp3


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