Words: Andre Jones
Set within a lengthy brick-and-mortar clad snug alleyway behind the venue’s main room, and decked out with an outdoor sound system that pipes the ever important musical on-goings from the inside dancefloor to the clusters of socialite dart punchers in its midst, Brunswick’s My Aeon nightclub represents the techno mecca of Melbourne’s Smoker’s areas.
Unlike many other nightclubs in this city, My Aeon is one of the few that allows punters to take their freshly bought drinks outside with them to accompany that all important cigarette or two. Often one will feel emotionally conflicted as a smoker when on a massive night out in this city, as you’ve just purchased that refreshing pint of beer, a nice glass of whisky, or for those of the older persuasion – a lovely glass of red – and then alas! You bump into one of your mates, intensely keen for a chinwag and few sparks of the Bic lighter, but the internal debate rages on inside your mind like a golden retriever frenetically chasing a tennis ball in the park: Do you raucously quell your thirst in a rapid fashion, in order to facilitate the next quarter hour of cooked conversational absurdity that’s due to follow? Knowing that an attempt to sneak even an iota of alcohol outside with you will have the guardian of the doors of freedom, aka the bouncer, deny you your nicotine inspired joviality? Or do you stop and bluntly tell your mate to wait it out for another 10 minutes, whilst you sip and enjoy your intoxicatingly enticing liquid contentment in the darkened mists whilst heavy basslines flow through your skin like stormy rain down a river?
Well with My Aeon, this problem has been reduced to a mathematical certainty. No longer must one toss and toil with such an existential torrent of rave-induced decisions in perpetuity, utter musical freedom and social mobility are in symbiotic alignment in the hazy path that leads from the darkened heaving dancefloor to the bustling and strenuously varied outdoor bazaar of clubbers out in the sparse and unique smoker’s area that lays beyond.
Whilst in pre-renovation days of yore, the outer rims of My Aeon’s main-floor and outdoor area was found through a confusing, cavernous black tunnel of confusion and ongoing psychological shock – not unlike Jung’s concept of the shadow archetype, a path that forced you to confront your own inner depths and unconscious troubles before leading to the light and emboldening freedom of the light and understood – the club’s layout now mirrors that of sonic and social enlightenment, perfectly comprehensible to even the most affected club-goer at 4am, desperately trying to find that one lost mate that they last saw 45 minutes prior.
A real big tick that My Aeon has going for its outdoor area is that now, after their recent major overhaul/renovations, the outdoor smokers contains: a space with seating, a couple of large communal gas heaters which are like injections of positive radiance to the cold weary bones of the winter-focused club goers, extremely convenient toilets located on the left-hand side of the space, and to top it all off, the tail end of the Smoker’s area has a semi-circular expansive tail that opens up for more room for movement or to cater for larger gatherings of friends and randoms alike. Perhaps the one criticism anyone could find would be that there could be a little bit more seating available, but the trade-off for this is vastly more room to move around in total. And anyway, once it gets to the early AM and the whole alley begins to busy up with dart smashers and conversationalists alike, all surrounded by the suburban brickwork and garden décor of My Aeon’s sonic splendour – no one quite minds a bit of a sit on the ground with good mates, anyway – whether they’re old or new.
The My Aeon smokers gets a rating of: 4.5/5 darts, or 9.5/10 pouches for those using imperial tobacco measurements.
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