Last Friday (May 11) a big Sven Vath party at Frankfurt's prime techno club U60311 was busted by German and US police.
At 12:45, when the party was just getting really up to speed, all of sudden the music stopped, leaving everybody wondering if maybe the live act scheduled for 3:30 am was to perform early. Such hopes were destroyed quickly, though, as loads of uniformed police, both German and US C.I.D. in full combat gear complete with bullet proof vests (which I thought was way overdone – who brings a gun to a techno club?). The commander took a microphone to announce that this was a police raid (duh!). Everybody was to sit down and wait for them to pick out specific people they said they were after. US CID asked all US military personnel to identify themselves to be separated form the crowd (I wonder whatever happened to those poor guys). A further announcement said that after the arrests the club was to be vacated (big booohs) in order to search the venue (for what, hm?). Information as to when the party would to continue was to be given later. On a positive note: the announcement also said people who might be carrying "things which are not entirely legal" should throw these away now and then leave the club to be clean at the door where they might do some random checks. A friend who walked out later as he had a coat checked told me the place looked like a pharmacy...
So, they did their picks and some people, apparently most of them American, were escorted out of the club, some of them handcuffed. All the while, the scene was filmed with video cameras. After some 45-60 minutes the crowd calmly filed out of the club as ordered. Everybody was then hanging around in the street awaiting further information about the development. Well, after another 45 minutes or so it transpired that the party was not to continue and the club was being closed. The crowd started to get uneasy, some started a mini-party with music out of a car but that was quickly stopped by the police, making people edgy. But Sven Vath was able to calm people down. I also heard the bouncers were lying on the ground, handcuffed and gagged.
Well, it came to a good end, considering: lucky us, this being a party of super-well connected Frankfurt local hero Sven Vath, he immediately found an alternative location very close by in a 3 level house/hip hop club. They may have had a party of their own there, but not anymore.... He made the announcement via megaphone to the cheering crowd. So hundreds of people moved over and by 4:30 the party was in full and defiant swing again with an equally defiant Sven Vath at the decks.
What can I tell you – this sucked big time. The club remains closed until further notice, leaving Frankfurt stripped of its most important (actually, pretty much only dedicated) techno club. We’re lost, but hoping for the best.
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