Alright, I cheated a bit on the inspiration for today's track, alas it was the title of my London Alive walking tour number two: London Calling!
The psychology professor, Dr. Seefeldt, led a group to Camden to tour the alternative side of London, an area that was home to many famous rock bands and venues that hosted them. One such venue was The Music Machine which is now KOKO. It was huge on the punk scene in the late 70's, and a few notable occurrences are that the Sex Pistols and The Clash shared a stage here, and this is where Bon Scott of AC/DC was drinking before he died (...by choking on his own vomit). Another important venue is Roundhouse which is a converted Victorian engine shed and now hosts performing arts. It has a rich rock history, having offered the first all-night rave (where Pink Floyd performed), and other artists to perform there include The Doors, Led Zeppelin, the Rolling Stones...the list goes on. (Disclaimer: it was terribly difficult to photograph in Camden as it was highly populated, with bustling crowds on the sidewalks, and the pace of the tour was rather quick.)
Camden takes its anti-establishment sentiment seriously, and for many years the Devonshire Arms, a Camden Pub, had a very strict 'Goth Only' policy, and none were admitted that did not meet this dress code. While we didn't enter any goth stores, we did go into Cyberdog within The Stables Market. Cyberdog is rave central, and it's THE place to go to buy any clothing that flashes, glows, or otherwise makes the wearer appear to originate from another galaxy. While the store is already in a basement, there is also a sub-basement which you must be over 18 to descend to, and I'll skip the details on the finds down there, but it is an experience unlike any other. Even if you're not on the hunt for a fiber optic Judy Jetson dress, I recommend at least breaching the threshold of Cyberdog, as the two neon-clad rave-dancing females above your head on little balconies are quite entertaining.
There is so much to see at the market, but even the walk back to the tube provides some interesting sites, as apparently English dogs aren't 'hot,' they're 'posh,' and man, did I always wonder where all those reject pots you come across end up, and now I know - thanks Camden!
While Camden is one cool town, I'm not sure I'd want to live there, as I'm weary of any place where pianos walk off by themselves:
For dinner, our destination was The Coal Hole on the Strand, a pub I discovered online that resides where the coal cellar for the Savoy Hotel next door used to be. The Coal Hole is also notable in the world of music, but for a far different genre, as Gilbert & Sullivan frequented the pub and performed here! The food was delicious, I partook in a chicken and mushroom pie and sticky toffee pudding for dessert! (Hey, I did a lot of walking.) Fun fact: the road in front of the Savoy is the only one in London where you drive on the right side of the road!