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BrightonRock at Hove Town Hall

What you'll hear

AC/DC, Van Halen, Cult, Nickelback, Prodigy, Guns'n'Roses, System of a Down, Metallica, Billy Idol, Nirvana

What you won't hear:

Cure, Depeche Mode, Dead or Alive*, VNV Nation, Front 242, Nephilim, Covenant

* for which I, for one, am eternally grateful.

Musical accessibility

If you like rock, you won't hear anything you haven't danced to before, from the moment you arrive to when they scrape you off the dancefloor.

Dancefloor humour

Tenacious D, Kylie Minogue

Website and Online Forum

You'll find a few of the regulars in the forum section of the BrightonRock website, and plenty of comments and reviews of previous nights.


Hove Town Hall, on the main drag through Hove. Large venue and it needs to be for the hundreds who turn out each time. Not the most atmospheric place, being a council building, the main hall is big, plain, high and bare. There's a raised stage for the DJ's, the rest is split between the dancefloor and tables/chairs. At least they keep the lights down in the main hall, but the main bar and entrace area is all brightly lit and not exactly intimate. Hint: if you go up the stairs from the main bar, there's another small bar and a balcony area that overlooks the main hall.

A typical night

You'll arrive and wonder if you've got the date wrong because it looks deserted from outside. Once inside, you'll get charged 6 quid if you're a member, 8 quid otherwise. Check your baggage at the cloakroom downstairs, go back up, past the entrance and up again. If you want to join, stop at the desk there, then head into the bar area.

The crowd will start to become apparent at this point and you'll see it's a mixed lot, from teen skate punks to people who probably first rocked out to Buddy Holly. Everyone's very friendly though, and if anyone does get out of order the security is swift and effective. Of course, it being a rock club, it's not very politically correct with the girls encouraged to play the rock-chick part and the blokes encouraged to drool over them.

As for the music policy, it seems to be to only play tracks that have stood the test of time and which everyone will recognise. This means that sooner or later you'll get the urge to venture onto the dancefloor, where there is usually plenty of room. Later on, it can get a bit packed but never turns into a crush. There's some flashing lights, the very occasional flash pot going off and a fog machine that sprays straight onto the dancefloor - so watch it if you dance up the front near the right speaker stack.

One good feature of the layout is that as the main bar is away from the dance floor, it's easy to stop and chat there without having to shout over the music. Also, theres a fair bit of seating (if you're planning to meet people, I'd suggest you meet here rather than in the main hall where the size and darkness will make it a challenge).

The capacity is maybe 500, possibly more, and there are always a LOT of people there (incidentally, I think they're getting close to the point where they reach capacity and end up having to turn people away at the door - so getting there before 11 may become advisable).

Dress Code

None. Wear what you like, but a good percentage of the audience will be male, wearing band t-shirts and jeans. You'll come across the occasional full-on goth or fetishy person wearing not-a-lot, they tend to stand out from the crowd though. Some extremely exotic creatures defying earthly description may also be sighted from time to time, especially at Halloween.

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