6 Other Rock Music Venues That We've Lost In The Last 6 Years

Goodbye is the hardest word, but also the most common.

Frodo Cover

While the local alternative music scene is still very much alive and kicking with regular gigs, a lot of venues have been sadly lost over the past couple of years. Some closed their doors and are now relics of their former glory, others have since then changed management and seen a drastic difference in targeted demographics. Some have just been forcefully wiped off the face of the Earth. 

Of course, everyone's still reeling from the fact that Coconut is gone, but that's just the tip of the iceberg. Here’s a little tribute to six of our favourite venues that have all seen their last days since 2010. Hold on to your nostalgia triggers kids, we’re going on a feels trip.

1. Poxx Bar

Poxx Bar

One of the current generation’s earliest memories of gigs might include this one. While mostly famous for its metal nights, Poxx Bar also used to host discos and, fun fact – the very first Sunglasses At Night parties.

 Where are they now?

The entire building which housed Poxx Bar on the ground floor is now a business complex including a language school. Slightly less rock and roll to say the least, but still pretty cool to walk into a clean office building and remember the exact place where you last got thrown at a wall during a moshpit seven years ago.

2. Play Rock

It’s pretty difficult to find any records left of this place. While we’re still talking about the same years, it seems like not much has survived. But that definitely doesn’t mean it wasn’t great while it lasted. Situated right in the heart of Paceville opposite what was, is, and always will be Havana, this place always had the audacity to play the direct opposite of everything else around it. 

 Where are they now?

One part fried chicken takeaway, one part gentlemen’s club. Oh how the mighty have fallen. 

3. Serenity Bar

While a tad more recent and definitely more short-lived than other venues on the list, Serenity Bar in Marsa showed up at a time when a lot of other bars were closing down, so the events held there had a great sense of urgency and hopeful desperation about them. 

It’s for this reason that many people might overlook or underrate this venue’s indirect importance in the greater scheme of things. Primarily a bikers’ bar, Serenity gladly welcomed the then slightly lost alternative scene, allowing it to regroup and rebuild for a while. 

It was also there for the earliest days of bands that are now well-established within the alternative music scene nowadays, like the female duo Fuzzhoneys (photo by the amazing Storbju). 

Serenity Fuzzhoneys

Where are they now?

Back in the dark recesses of Marsa; Serenity Bar is now just another casualty of time. It was definitely good while it lasted though.

4. Voice of a Generation

Voice Of A Generation Logo

You don’t go naming your rock bar something like that unless you mean business, and boy did V-Gen mean business. Open for a total of around a year and a half, this venue was the direct embodiment of Kurt Cobain’s famous “It’s better to burn out than to fade away”. 

For those two summers, there was barely any band or artist that didn’t play there, and some of the most memorable music moments of this decade went down in that dark (and at times pretty hot) underground club.

Where are they now?

Closed and empty, V-Gen’s remains are still there off a side street in Paceville. Its sign still hangs as a constant reminder that sometimes, people don’t know what they’ve got until it’s gone.

5. Rookies

Rookies Rek

Ask anyone who’s ever been to at least one gig in Malta about Rookies in Bugibba, and you’ll probably be setting yourself up for a long nostalgic trip down memory lane. The annual marathon of bands back to back. The Battle of the Bands. That huge Carlsberg banner at the back of the stage that has a photo of nearly every band in Malta in the last decade playing in front of it at least once. The great pizza. 

Of course there was also Chris, the owner, singing along as he rushes to balance everything and everyone. For a lot of people growing up in the mid 00s, Rookies was a beacon. A place you knew you could bank on week in, week out. 

Last year was the official closing of the venue as many people know it due to Chris’ stepping down and moving to a different country, but the memories (and literally thousands of photos) will never fade.

 Where are they now?

Well…still there. Rookies still operates under new management, but this time round, it’s more about Sunday Premiere League and quick evening beers for people who just happen to be in the area. If you’re feeling nostalgic though, head on down and have a pint for us.

6. Coach & Horses

Coach And Horses

If you’ve been recognizing each and every venue and smiling and nodding as you read along, you knew this was coming. The final blow in the feels. There was a time when V-Gen and Rookies were open at the same time. 

Hosting pretty much every band on the island at the time, Coach and Horses was seen as a hipster hangout that capitalized on the current trends and that was never wary of accepting more people in its midst. It had a certain air of home to it, and those double wooden doors that automatically closed behind you and the oldschool blue-lit bar that awaited you when you walked in are something a lot of people will definitely not be forgetting any time soon.

 Where are they now?

Dirty, empty, crumbling, but still there. Apparently, rumours have it that Coach and Horses might still accept requests for one off parties or gigs, but with a history like that, organizers nowadays would definitely feel the pressure of needing to deliver if they request to reopen its doors for one night. Most passers by prefer to keep it as it is – a monument of something that was, but not necessarily something that never won’t be again.

For two great (and very different) looks into the beating heart of Coach and Horses, check out these two videos from mainstream legends Red Electrick and alternative sweethearts Stalko. Sometimes, the walls themselves look like they could talk, if people cared enough to stop and listen.

Which other bars do you miss? Tell us your favourite memories in the comments on Facebook!

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