29 Paradise Circus Queensway, Queensway, B1 2BJ
Don’t Look Back (Into The Sun)
You’d think it would be hard to write a review of a place that no-one’s ever been to sober, but to put it plainly there is no such thing as a bad night at snobs. In its now former location it became a mecca for naive souls who thought they were just going out for a couple of drinks and got wonderfully carried away. Snobs was responsible for the MacDonald’s breakfast on the morning of my college results, the filthy traffic cone that found its way into my bedroom and the time I nearly died of fright as a milk float whirred passed me as the sun rose on the walk home. It’s certainly a place that has conjured generations of kinship, and nostalgia by the bucketload; qualities which will now be amplified by the club moving to a new premises after 41 years - from the corner of one Queensway to another.
As a purveyor of the official final night at Paradise Circus on Sunday 21st September, I have put together a personal compilation of why it ain’t nothing but a snobs thang, baby.
5. Sunday Girl
As a teenager it was all about the midweek madness of a Big Wednesday, but boy are bank holidays a blessing to us twenty somethings, and I quickly grew to love the offbeat indulgence of a Lazy Sunday. Frankly a bit of a mind fuck, waiting tirelessly for the limited bus service to pick you up whilst sipping spirits from a plastic bottle took a very different type of discipline to getting the party started on Saturday, on top of not letting the odd church congregation piling out of a service throw you off your game. Once you were singing praises brazenly to the DJ’s altar it really didn’t matter what fucking day it was, but it was particularly liberating to be out whilst the rest of the city sipped cocoa in its slippers.
4. Livin’ Is Easy
Booze at snobs is cheaper than chips (even neighbouring Top Nosh’s lovely cheesy ones). A combination of pre-drinking to near submission beforehand, devilishly bargainous house spirits and a split-price taxi home meant even if you couldn’t afford a hot meal, you could probably still afford to get your hazy groove on at snobs, making it a bonafide party for the people.
3. Get On Your Dancing Shoes
Snobs carved out the philosophy that if your shoes are dirty, you’ve had a good night. Who knows what really went down on those sticky tiles, but your snobs shoes have certainly lived more than other shoes. I thought I’d found a way of cheating this phenomena with some rubber jelly shoes which could simply be rinsed clean, but there’s nothing quite like examining the memories embedded within ruined canvas offerings the next day.
2. Come Together
Never before or since have I been to a nightclub hosting more human kindness and collective silliness, nor for that matter so many old friends to bump into. I once jumped so overzealously to Seven Nation Army that my bag flew open, unbeknownst to me showering belongings across a sizeable radius. Much to my amazement strangers began passing me my things, one reaching across with my purse from several metres away; another had saved my phone from certain death by catching it and placed it carefully back into my hands. My bus pass was also returned to me in the post by some sweet soul who had found it outside. Sure, some people are dicks, but the act of singing along with impassioned strangers, cloakroom camaraderie and an undeniable sense of togetherness has been cultivated in this place, and will undoubtably follow the club to the new venue.
1. The Final Countdown
The last song of the night has always been an important choice, and the bittersweet sound of The Libertines heralding the end of the night was sometimes too much for my unwieldy dancing heart to bear. The final song on the final night was Mr Blue Sky; a chirpy final word laced with apt lyrics:
…soon comes Mr. Night /
creeping over / now his hand is on your shoulder /
never mind / I’ll remember you this -
I’ll remember you this way.
The dying moments were a maelstrom of confetti, chanting and emotions, and I drank in every drop of euphoric revelry while it lasted. I guess the only thing left to do now is to gallantly yell “Snobs Forever!” from the proverbial rooftops, and check out what the new venue (Snobs Jr.) is sayin’.
Words & Illustration by LB.