The Dos Kolegas Fifth Anniversary celebrations were exactly as you’d imagine it. If you’ve never been to Dos Kolegas, it is one of Beijing’s finest dive bars. D-22 might have the name and the status, but Dos Kolegas has a completely different atmosphere. Dos Kolegas is tucked away in an otherwise unloved corner of a drive-in movie theatre complex, and has an expansive outdoor area that is well taken advantage of in the summer when the inside temperatures are exactly as hot as the music being performed on stage. People are friendlier and more open, including all of the staff, and bands seem far more willing to hang out there than any other venue I’ve been to yet. There’s something comfortable in the atmosphere, though I have to admit that you must be in the mood for it, or else extremely drunk.
Personally, I was the latter over this weekend. I didn’t have as much trouble finding alcohol as some people have suggested, but that might be because I spent a good portion of my night near the bar rather than on the dance floor. It was very much a social event for me, personally, though the bands that I did see were phenomenal. Instead of a linear review, I’ll a brief overview of what I got to see and what I loved.