Going Underground | Waking up in the wrong country

Typical … I wake up in Sweden at 6am. IÂ’m shivering at this very unfamiliar station (Lund, very pretty, according to the tourist guide), lighting up my very last cigarette, as flashbacks pummel away at my half-frozen brain with the regularity of the punches of a DSB ticket conductor.  

Apparently, in the middle of the night, I had a 15-minute window in which to show my valid ticket, but guess what: I was asleep! So, as I wake up with the Swedish inquisition on my case, I do something IÂ’ve never done before in my whole life: I ask for the police … to no avail. It ends violently. I believe that the guy has been sacked since then, and resettled in Afghanistan.

As I slowly turn into the legendary ice cube upon which the very last polar bear drifts away, my memory is finally coming back. Hazy images of the previous nightÂ’s debauchery are flashing before my eyes: a Hell ?s Angels castle and its bat-winged skulls coming out of the plasterwork, the giant axe in the middle of the dancefloor, and some seriously under-age girls, very busily pole-dancing.

For some strange reason, the big boss took a liking to me and gave me a grand tour of the premises. “Hey, take this porn calendar, hot from the press – it will bring you good luck,” he said before dragging me to

the garage where the piece de resistance was silently humming: 20 Harleys, lined up.

“Would you like to ride one of them, sonny?” I was asked as I teased the second gear of the biggest chopper. I have not even had a driving lesson before, not to mention a licence – maybe it was the thought that I can’t be a Danish minister anymore, but somehow I found my way to the VICE Picks party: simply picture the worst bodega you can ever think of, choke-full of hipsters.

A man called Rémi slipped a VIP bracelet around my wrist and immediately ordered another round of what can only be described as a massive ice cube containing cornea-burning amounts of alcohol. The severely damaged locals were transformed into icons of Copenhagen kool to their greatest surprise, as we casually played the worst game of darts this planet has ever seen. Everybody was, by this stage beyond friendly, and as a great punk rock band took to the stage I casually escaped to catch the last train … and missed it. The night would be a very long one indeed.


In Paris, where I have lived for the past ten years, it is a sport, but here in Copenhagen it is virtually a terra incognita: the challenges are unlimited, the possibilities endless. Everybody is so polite and obedient that the oldest tricks in the game are child’s play if you happen to be in the right state of mind, that is: without an øre in your pockets, ready to party hard/ determined to have a great time and VERY, VERY thirsty.

Next VICE Picks party

Kanal bodega, Overgaden oven Vandet 36, Cph K; Friday Nov 25

Join one of the most rock n’ roll parties in town, with an international crowd so hip it hurts, all courtesy of VICE magazine. A full blast is guaranteed for all, with free beer and Jäg for early comers, and live music.

Jule Distortion

Halvandet, Refshalevej 325, Holmen; Sat Dec 17, 21:00-05:00

Our friend Thomas Fleurquin is doing it again. Imagine a club night at your local bodega, but on a massive scale. Catch the raver bus to the cheap bar, enjoy the bingo, food booths and gløgg, and you’ll be raving all the way to Christmas.

Bitchslap party

KPH volume Enghavevej 80, Cph V; Friday Nov 25

Free beer for the early comers followed by a cheap bar that will be taken over by a wild international crowd gathered to listen to DJs Pelle (P6), Fergus Murphy (Muldvarp Radio), and Dixone (yo fok), with more to be announced. Highlight of the night is the Almost World Famous Dancing Competition, though only the brave need apply – a former winner had to go to hospital with a dislocated knee.

Christmas art sale

Blågårdsgade 14 st.tv, 2200 Cph N; Thu Dec 8, from 12:00 till late

Meet the artist in the flesh at this independent pop up gallery with music and drinks as well as affordable screenprints and original artwork up for grabs.

This section was contributed by Alexis Robiou, a French fine artist, writer and musician who has lived in Copenhagen for two years. As well as hosting Copenhagen Fashion Week events at Nikolaï Kirke or rocking live at Rust, he ?s been spotted acting as a very improbable city tour guide or singing street karaoké during the last edition of Distortion. His work has been exhibited in New York, Tokyo, Paris, London, Munich, Barcelona, Dublin, and now on Blågårdsgade (see below for details).

Join the debate – join us on Twitter or Facebook, or leave a comment below.