20 Friday, 4 September 2009 London Lite CLUB TALK By Scott Manson W hat is going on with Londons clubland? Last weekend alone, there was a mass brawl at a Notting hill Carnival after-party, a 15-year-old was stabbed and someone was decapitated outside the Ministry Of Sound. Even at Claphams SW4 festival on Saturday, I saw two blokes nearly come to blows. Why? One accused the other of pushing in at the VIP bar. Where the drinks were free. Free! and people are still hacked off enough to want a scrap. Weird times. Dont get me wrong, Ive seen dodgy goings-on in clubs for years. at a hip hop warehouse club in the Bronx, back when New York still had edge, I watched as the MCs exhortation to throw your (very bad word) guns in the air saw at least three people fire shots into the ceiling. Cue my fastest ever club exit. Nights dancing through clouds of CS gas at Manchesters hacienda also spring to mind. Ive always found kick-offs WEEKEND LAIDBACKANDLOWKEY Place to be: the Bigga Fish party Pumpit upthe Garage isback! Y ES, it seems this is the year of revivals. Weve welcomed back bands like Blur, fallen for Eighties fashion again and even EastEnders has got in on the act by bringing Danniella Westbrook back to Albert Square. This trend also seems to be extending to Londons nightlife, because The Garage -- a venue which defined the north London scene in the mid-to-late Nineties -- is back from the dead and breathing new life into this area of town. The Garage opened back in 1993 -- Oasis, Radiohead and the Arctic Monkeys all played here in its Britpop heyday -- but then abruptly shut its doors in 2006. In the three years it lay dormant Highbury lost its edge as a nocturnal destination, too. But the good times are back in N5 and so Lite went along on a Friday for the Dirty Boots (third Friday of every month) night of bands plus beats to see how many people were parking themselves in The Garage once again. After a quick drink at the Hen & Chickens theatre pub nearby we make our way there, strolling past The Library and the Buffalo Bar -- two hip places that are also enticing party people back to the area. We arrive at midnight. The Relentless Garage (to give it the official new monicker) is full to bursting with a great mixed crowd of post-pub locals wanting late drinks, hip young things and thirtysomething music aficionados. Id already been twice since the reopen- ing -- once for curtain-up in June and once to see a night hosted by cutting-edge record label Moshi Moshi. You might remember Moshi Moshi for launching the careers of Hot Chip, Metronomy and Friendly Fires, or perhaps for hosting great parties at Hoxton Bar & Kitchen. B uT at Dirty Boots I take longer to appreciate just how much this previously scruffy venue has been improved since the first time I visited as a penni- less student in 2000. Mama Group, which owns clubs including Heaven, has lavished 1m on it, the capac- ity has been doubled, there are more toilets, nicer dcor, new stairs to the upstairs room and a new bar -- called Minibar -- at the front. Its an impres- sive transformation. After exploring the new nooks and crannies we make for the main room and are treated by DJs The Fabulous by chris beanland A CLAssIC BrITpOp DEsTINATION FOR FOAMY FUN Bigga Bubble Birthday Bash Bigga Fish, the charity to train kids in all things media, invades the Roundhouse for an under-21s foam party with grime, hip hop and UK garage from DJs Crazy Cousinz, Kig and gracious K. Saturday, Roundhouse, Chalk Farm Road, NW1 (0844 482 8008, roundhouse.org.uk), 6pm-11pm, 15, 8 advance. Tube: Chalk Farm FOR HIDDEN MOVIES Secret Cinema in a warehouse, on a rooftop, under a bridge? This week- ends hush-hush night screening could be anywhere outdoors. if secret Cinemas last bashes are anything to go by, therell also be a surprise live act. Ticket-holders will be sent details on saturday. Sunday, sign up to secretcinema.org. FOR FAMILY FROLICS Teddy Bears Picnic Maggies Cancer Centres throw an end-of-summer fte with all a littleun could want: theatre shows, face paint, Fulham Football Clubs speed Cage, animal Man plus furry pals, stalls galore, a BBQ and a Pimms bar for mum and dad. all proceeds to Maggies. Sunday, Walled Garden, Fulham Palace, Bishops Avenue, SW6 (maggies-centres.org), free, noon-5pm. Tube: Putney Bridge MArTHA DE LACEY IN&OUTTONIGHT index.html2.html3.html4.html5.html6.html7.html8.html9.html10.html11.html12.html13.html14.html15.html16.html17.html18.html19.html20.html21.html22.html23.html24.html25.html26.html27.html28.html29.html30.html31.html32.html33.html34.html35.html36.html37.html38.html39.html