Enjoy good electronic music without leaving the bar! Popular electronic music nights are found not only in clubs but also in music bars around the Capital. As an electronic-music fan and curator, here is my top choice of bars for trippy pre-drinks and full nights out in Brussels, City Center.
Bonnefooi: music every day 'til late
Bonnefooi means "by chance" in Brussels dialect. Open 7 days a week, there is no rest time for Bonnefooi lovers. Have a coffee, enjoy a concert, co-work on afternoons, dance ’till midday. The dance bar is located between the Stock Market and Ancienne Belgique (Brussels best concert venue). It’s packed with locals ‘round the clock and it can get as warm, sweaty and crowded as an Indian bus. Peak times are between 1am and 3am and early mornings at 6am. It is the dance bar open the latest in the neighbourhood, hence a typical after-work and after-hour hang-out. It has two floors, a smokers room, a art-deco style and a very smooth sound system made of gold. Music style: local and international talents from the electronic music scene, label nights, Live sets, but also really cool concerts.
Epicerie Moderne: Underground techno.
Former dive bar, Epicerie Moderne took everyone by surprise, including its owners, by becoming one of Brussels beloved underground venue since 2015. Now three years in its running, Epicerie Moderne is home to young folks looking to dance the night away on local and upcoming labels, in a chill and intimate atmosphere. Once a hidden-secret, Epicerie Moderne has a small arched cellar open to public for hard techno nights. The bar has tons of Belgian beers à-la-carte but also a refined choice of Whiskies, Rhums and of course Berlin’s signature soft-drink Club-Matte! Epicerie Moderne is open from Thursday to Saturday for Club-nights from 11pm to 6am. Summer times are home to techno labels on additional Sundays at the same hours. Sleep-in three days a week, party another four!
© Picture courtesy: Sebastien Eduardo Meulenbergh
Kumiko's DJ nights
Kumiko Izakaya is a bar, café, restaurant and concert place situated at the end of Rue Dansaert (a long designer street connecting the Stock Market Building to the North part of Brussels). When you enter cosy and marvellous Kumiko, you may have no idea that the back of the bar opens up on Brussels best kept secret: a gigantic outdoor terrace and inner courtyard with hundreds of chairs, benches and wooden tables. Chic and romantic, it has become in no time my new favourite place to hang out a step away from the City Center. They are open all-day and have a great kitchen made of fresh burgers, donburis but also homemade limonade and delicious G&T’s. I love Kumiko best for its musical nights and DJ roaster; small labels and local talents on display. Music happens downstairs in the chalet-kind atmosphere (lights are turned off, there is a small DJ booth and cosy dance floor). Musical nights are on on Friday and Saturday from 9pm to 3am. (note that sometimes it starts much later as people are still eating!). - You can also check out their sister café "Flamingo".
Beurschouwburg: Culture & Electronic Arts
It took me a few years to explore and unravel the full potential of Beurschouwburg (= Brussels slang name for theatre and arts venue). Concert venue, club nights, rooftop parties, conferences, culturel vector for change or artistic conventions and festivals - no wonder it took so long! As a music enthusiast, I recommend Beurschouwburg’s Top-level floor for electronic music DJ Live-sets during the weekend. Check the programma online on their website. Must-see: Every year in November, Festival Schiev organises a 3-day weekend of avant-garde musical discoveries featuring concerts, talks and a label market.
Café Central: electronic & eclectic
Proper Brussels dive bar - there is no further way to classify Café Central. In the middle of the Saint-Géry neighbourhood, it is the most popular and crowded café out-there. It’s not as hip or as cool as its neighbours but it has got something unique: music and history. Every night is a gamble, every night is unique: punk concerts, modular live-sets, documentary movie projections, jazz, electronic music, ... Best for good DJs and electronic music is on Friday and Saturday nights ’till very late. You can't go more local than this!
© Photo courtesy by FTRSND (Lab with Enkephalin).
Bonnefooi: Free concerts and DJs every daySteenstraat 8, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
Epicerie Moderne: Underground electronic music venueRue des Chapeliers 30, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Café Central - Brussels Live Music & Dive BarBorgval 14, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
Beurschouwburg: Performance arts theatreAuguste Ortsstraat 20, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
Kumiko Izakyaka: Restaurant, Beer Garden & MusicRue d'Alost 7, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
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