The following review was based on the Paris Péripate New Year’s Day Party on Tuesday, 1 January 2019 and is written from first hand accounts from our party reviewer Peter who lives in Amsterdam.
During the New Year’s eve La Leche party my significant other met a couple from Tel Aviv who had intel on some anonymous afterparty of which a pin on Google Maps was the only information available. As a consequence, around eight in the morning we found ourselves in an Uber bound for an unknown destination with two people we hardly knew but who seemed (and were) totally cool. We were dropped off under an overpass of the Peripherique in what was pretty clear not to be the best neighbourhood.
We joined the line and had to wait for half an hour because there was a one-out-one-in policy. I had allowed a gap to occur in my medication scheme so I was coming down a bit and started doubting my life’s choices, the decision to come here being one of them. Once inside, though, the atmosphere picked me up immediately and assisted by the appropriate powder-plus-liquid master combo I bounced back miraculously. The atmosphere was dark but lively, the music was great and the feeling of the crowd was a total contrast with the party we had just come from. Almost immediately I got to talk to a guy who looked like he came from a circuit party, but said he avoided Paris Matinée because it mostly attracts pretty muscle queens who like to look and be looked at but are just not much fun. Don’t you just love it when people formulate your thoughts?
While we were waiting in line we were told that there was only one rule, bring an ID, but otherwise it was pretty much anything goes. Fortunately, most people are not that prone to murder, rape and theft, which left drugs and sex and lots of dancing, which we were totally fine with. The crowd was lovely: super friendly, the approachable kind of attractive and very cheerful. I met heaps of interesting people and I was feeling an aura of love all around.
The party was in a damp, dark concrete bunker underneath the Péripherique. It had a big lounge area and a room with a DJ where the crowd went wild. The audience was mixed, there were plenty of women and straight guys, but the vast majority seemed to be gay men. I may be a bit biased on this because I was dancing mostly in the back of the room, which was also the place where guys went when carnal urges presented themselves.
The techno was bouncy and energetic and not too dark. I loved it, I wish I could find out who the DJ was. We danced and danced and did some other things my mom doesn’t need to know about and danced some more, until we were thrown out with the trash at half past two in the afternoon. The unforgiving daylight showed what the damp environment combined with god knows how many hours of accumulated cigarette ashes had done to our shoes and pants. I seriously considered burning them, but I’m not sure the asbestos-like layer that had formed would have caught fire using anything short of a welding torch.
Some research the days after learned that we had ended up in a party called Péripate. It is organized at random intervals in a squatted bunker which during day serves as a restaurant called Freegan Pony where they serve food made of thrown away food. It is difficult to figure out when Péripate is organized. There is a newsletter but I heard the mailings often don’t happen and people just sort of find out through word of mouth when it happens. That sucks, since we’re very keen to go again but Paris is a bit far outside the Amsterdam ring for a spontaneous visit. This party really was something else. If you ever run into someone who tips you off about it then definitely go. Do not wear your good shoes.
(Update April 2019: Péripate moved to another location, I have no clue where. The mailings never came and their Facebook posts are cryptic to the point of absurdity.)
Party and Venue Information
|Party type||Underground techno|
|Type of audience||Age range 23 (the lower age limit) – 45, I think it was in principle not a gay party, but the majority was. Types of people: everything Attitude: friendly, approachable, flirty, cruisy, social Anybody over 23 gets in so no annoying door selection circus.|
|Outfits||Anything, shirts, shirtless, leather and elastic harnesses, shorts, long trousers.|
|Sex||Plenty. The vast majority of the people were dancing, but if the urge arose people just took care of business in the back of the dance room.|
|Venue||Damp, dark concrete bunker underneath the Peripherique|
|Security||There was security at the entrance, mostly for crowd control. Inside there was sometimes someone with a light checking the floor. Carrying an ID was an absolute requirement for admission, regulars said that this was unusual, but I have no reliable information on this.|
|Facilities||Cloakroom Payment methods: entry and cloak room in cash, drinks could be bought with PIN. Drinks prices were 3 euro There was a lounge area|
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