Amazing footage of the Boccaccio. At 2:10 the mayor of Destelbergen speaks to reporters about the nuisance of the club…which remained open sometimes from Sunday evening all the way until Monday evening. Even after closing, he says, club patrons would continue to hang out in the neighborhood around the club. The mayor calls in the Rijkswacht (National Guard?) and forces the club to close on Monday night. Eventually, the owner of the club, Dirk De Maesschalk, pushes the DJ off the decks to catcalls from the clubbers. A reporter asks him “why did you shut off the music” and he replies “because the neighbors are complaining.”
—Interview by Benny de Konick for In&Out Magazine, exact date unknown but late 80’s.
New Beat Flashback. This video depicts the opening night of Club Prestige and interviews some of the key people in the New Beat scene.
All photos of Prestige taken by DJ b-fficient, posted in Club Prestige facebook group at: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=69336791544
The Belgian musical movement known as new beat was in its hey day during the late 1980’s, a contemporary of the British orbital rave and acid house scenes. Like acid house, new beat brought more and more people into the clubs, received national media attention and spawned commercially successful musical acts and nightclubs that reached an ever widening audience. What made new beat significant is the fact that it was a home-grown scene, a rarity in Belgium which is so often influenced by it’s nearest neighbors France and The Netherlands, as well as England and the United States. When new beat started to make waves in mid-eighties Belgium, it heralded the first time that modern Belgian music received significant radio play or appeared in great numbers in the Belgian pop charts. The sheer amount of records that could be called “new beat” that were produced from 1986-1989 is in the thousands. Three nightclubs were at the center of the new beat movement —the Boccaccio in Destelbergen (a town just outside of Ghent), the Ancienne Belgique in Antwerp and Club Prestige, also in Antwerp.