Half the fun of living overseas is being able to attend events that aren't available in your home country.
In Madrid, nightlife begins at around 12pm, so finding time to go to a gig is definitely not a problem, and will not clash with your University classes or work schedule.
On Facebook, I saw that the band Indigo Days, an indie group, were going to play at Maravillas Club, in Madrid. I did a quick search on Spotify, listened to their first album, and fell in love with their sound. The tickets were cheap, and I had no other Saturday night plans; needless to say, I snapped up the bargain.
Indie music is known for being a little alternative; it gets the name Indie from a shortened version of "Independent", because it is produced by the band themselves and not by a commercial record label.
The lyrics are not censored or edited by a record company: they are instead straight from the artist themselves, often deep and emotional. Furthermore, without the use of a professional recording label, the techniques used to produce the music can be ingenious and involve a lot of unusual sounds and objects. If you've seen the film "Yesterday" (2019) then you´ll know what I mean.
Indigo Days has a resonating and emotional sound, particularly reminiscent of the Irish rock band The Cranberries, and mixes somewhat melancholic vocals and lyrics with upbeat melodies to create a harmonious and enjoyable musical set.
The artists write and record all of their own music, and perform at many venues to spread knowledge of their music. You can find them on Spotify here.
Navigating the streets of Madrid, at night, will never cease to be an experience. Growing up in New Zealand, where nightlife ends at 2am, I was not prepared for Madrid. At 11pm there are families with young children going for a walk to get dinner.
On every street you can find a large number of madrileños socialising, so being out at night doesn't feel quite as intimidating as in other countries, where drunken antics are more likely to be afoot.
I walked past the entrance to the club twice, because the doors were closed and there was no street sign to indicate an entrance.
It wasn't just me - I had to give directions to five different madrileño couples looking for the club, too.
The interior of the club was impressive. Maravillas Club was a dimly lit, underground space with a large stage along the right-hand side of the room.The left wall was lined with a bench, and at the far end of the room there was a bar serving a variety of exotic cocktails, wine and beer.
The discotec tiles behind the stage lit up in a vibrant mix of colours, moving and changing with the beat of the music. The disco ball hanging from the ceiling swirled and cast shimmering light on the stage and the audience. The people to my left were kissing and dancing, and the people to my right were trying to take aesthetic selfies. In summary: it was the perfect setting for an indie music experience.
I had the pleasure of listening to Indigo Day´s new album, and receiving a printed booklet with all of their original songs and lyrics.
The songs were in English, but the crowd was mostly Spanish-speaking, and thus it was wonderful to see people enjoying the music, together in a shared experience. The relationship between the crowd and the band was jovial and relaxed, the MC making jokes and clearly enjoying being able to share their music with others.
I was particularly impressed by the use of a loud speaker, aimed at the microphone, to create eery and echoing vocals by one of the singers,. Similarly, the use of a trumpet by the lead singer and guitarist was unexpected, especially since she went a little lightheaded towards the end of the solo.
Somewhere around 1am I hit my limit for loud music, vibrating ground, and pulsating lights. I decided to leave, and relished the crisp air of the street and the almost empty metro on my way home.
It was definitely a marvellous experience.