Last June, monthly party Violaine returned to its Chinatown digs after nearly a year-long hiatus, filling the void that had been left when host venue Roberto's temporarily stopped live entertainment. For eight years, the club named for a Cocteau Twins song has been ground zero for LA lovers of big, dreamy guitars, thunderous drums and wispy vocals.
Originally launched by co-promoters and DJs Juann Alternativah, Doomie, Wednesday (who left the fold when she moved to Portland last year) and Matthew Johnson, Violaine came about when LA's previous homes for shoegazers had shuttered.
“There was an audience there,” says Johnson, “but there was nothing going on.”
With a mix of live bands and clever DJ sets, Violaine became the place to indulge in your love of Catherine Wheel and Slowdive, check out nu gaze tunes from M83 and Mahogany and catch performances from locals like The Autumns, Tears Run Rings and broaddaylight. More importantly, though, Violaine evolved into a meeting place for the city's up-and-coming bands.
“All of the bands that are local support each other,” says Johnson. “It's a community.”
Saturday night, Violaine presents sets from Space Waves, The Cartographers and Shatto. In between the bands, the resident DJs will be spinning a mix of new and classic sounds. We asked Johnson to pick out a few of his favorites.
M83 “We Own the Sky”
SPC-ECO “Telling You”
Asobi Seksu “Thursday”
Film School “Compare”