Whenever I need a fix of electric guitars, sweat and cheap beer, I head to the Sonic Ballroom. Full stop. The ballroom is one of the staples in the rock’n’roll topography of the Ehrenfeld district, also known for the Underground and the nearby Live Music Hall. Whereas the other two venues cater more to a rock and pop crowd, the Sonic Ballroom remains firmly in the hand of the underground, with the punters ranging from punks with mohawks over rockabillies to metalheads – and a concert programme to match: there are psychobilly shows, death metal concerts and the ever-popular Karaoke to Death, where you can belch out your favourite hardcore or metal songs supported by a full band. The backdrop of the stage is formed by the silhouettes of R.A.M.O.N.E.S, by the way, just to make clear what this place is about.
The ballroom, located in the same corner house for the last 20 years, also comes with a small beer garden, table football and (one of my favourites) super-delicious home-made liquorice schnapps known as Kettenfett, chain grease. Gabba gabba hey!