Breaking in the Elbow Room

Magnetic Flowers at NBT from pxsoul on Vimeo.

I’ll tell ya where we’ll go. Someplace warm. A place where the beer flows like wine. And beautiful women instinctively flock like the salmon of Capistrano. I’m talkin’ bout a little place called…The Elbow Room.

Enticed by good music and a $2 cover I made my first trips to The Elbow Room last Thursday and Friday nights.  I’ve written about the new venue a couple of times, but haven’t really taken the time to go check it out yet.  I decided to give them a little time to settle in before I passed judgment on them.  And for the record I have no affiliation with The Elbow Room.

The Atmosphere

As it is right now The Elbow Room is a nice mix of a bar and venue.  There is plenty of standing room in front of the stage as in a traditional venue, but also plenty of seating around the bar to find a place to sit down and have a conversation.  In the back by the pool tables you can talk over the bands if music is not your thing.  Because the cover is usually only $2, you can afford to take a chance on hearing some new bands that you might have not heard before.  If the low cover and music doesn’t draw you in, then maybe the drink specials will.  For the past 10 years I’ve been in Columbia, the cost of everything has gone up except the price for a drink in 5 Points.  The Elbow Room has $1 PBR draft and plenty of other cheap drink specials to get you tipsy without breaking the bank.

The sound system is fine.  It isn’t top of the line, but it gets the job done.  I’m not sure that the everyday listener could even tell a difference from the system that Sudworks had in there.  I felt like they could have used a couple of more lights on stage, but who really cares about that.

Overall The Elbow Room is an enjoyable place for live music.  The bathrooms are cleaner than most, there is a long bar so it isn’t too hard to get a drink,  there is plenty of “elbow room” so you aren’t too packed in and the open air feel with the garage and windows open makes it a pretty good place to watch some bands.  There was a big crowd both nights I went making the venue really come to life.  Let’s see if they can sustain this.

Josh Roberts and the Hinges

Last week I talked about how they should move 5 Points After 5 to another venue if the weather wasn’t cooperating.  I doubt it was because of anything I said, but last week they moved the band from the fountain to The Elbow Room.  This worked out great because when I got to the venue there were about 100 people of all ages outside and a packed house inside.  The weather had cleared up and made for nice night.  Josh Roberts put on two blistering sets filled with guitar solos and plenty of rocking out.  Some of the artists said that the new Elbow Room had the same energy as the original.  I wish I could truly verify this.

Magnetic Flowers

The Magnetic Flowers are just what every Friday night needs.  After a week in the office everyone needs to get out, live a little and unlax.  From their opening notes, The Magnetic Flowers had the crowd hooked into their musical journey, taking everyone from a dreamy drunk with “Widescreen Version” to a screamalong version of Weezer’s “El Scorcho” with 10 people on stage.  Watch out for their CD Release July 25th at Art Bar.  We’ll be sure to remind you a couple of times in the future.