The Bunker is a fantastic gritty underground bar and live music venue in the heart of Chemnitz in Saxony, East Germany. Chemnitz is a city awash with a grim architectural grey which effortlessly fuses utilitarian communist era concrete blocks with the heartless new town chic which has afflicted countless modern European cities. But I was lucky enough to be staying with friends from the city when I visited and beneath the cold exterior (it was winter as well), there were pockets of life seething with energy. While there, nothing captured this energy better than the Bunker. We went on a cold, rainy night. As you approach the club, you descend from the surface of the city to the inconspicuous, unassuming front entrance, surrounded by oppressive concrete blocks and iron grills - it could be an underpass. But once in, the underground lair was warm and inviting, the genuine thing and an actual former bunker, with low curving ceilings creating a wonderful higgledy-piggledy array of nooks and crannies tumbling away from the central room and bar used for the live shows. It was sweaty, claustrophobic, edgy and smoky and a great place to jump around to bands, DJs and music I'd not heard before. It was one of the great nights which made one of my odder European city getaways. I don't know if the smoking ban is enforced yet but it does continue to be a regular venue for regular live music (see last.fm for listings) and I'd heavily recommend it to anyone who has the dubious pleasure of passing through Chemnitz.
Rosenplatz 7, 09126 Chemnitz, Germany
Google map: bit.ly/jJz7DU
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