Brooklyn Masonic Temple is on the corner of Clermont and Lafayette Avenues, in the Fort Greene area of Brooklyn, not far from Brooklyn Academy of Music, including Howard Gilman Opera House and BAMcafé. It’s only a part-time venue, also serving as an old-style ‘community hall’, for dances, events, and (presumably) meetings of the Freemasons. Concerts are held there through boomBOOM Presents, which also throws events at (le) Poisson Rouge & DROM in Manhattan; Europa venue has also begun holding concerts there.
The Temple is an unusual venue, looking more like a ballroom than Bowery Ballroom or Highline Ballroom. It has a very ‘turn of the century’ feel, with grand corridors and pillars. The entrance leads through a corridor to the house-left side of the stage. The stage floor is large, with a sloped balcony above (just don’t put your drinks on the ledge at the edge of the balcony, as it is sloped as well, and any drinks can slide off). While not initially designed for concerts, the lines of sight are very good, though the lighting can be a bit strong. Bathrooms and coat check are downstairs, as well as a relatively hard-to-find bar – go past the men’s room, turn left, then turn left again (but you can smoke there, for some reason).
Bands that play the Temple are through boomBOOM Presents usually more of the high-minded, artistic acts, like Beirut or múm. However, Europa has brought more rock so far, of higher quality than what plays at Europa itself. While it can be a bit of a hassle to reach (the G train, which doesn’t run through Manhattan at all, can be a wait), it’s well worth the trip.
317 Clermont Avenue at Lafayette Avenue
G train to Clinton/Washington Ave. – walk 2 blocks west on north side of Lafayette, walk 1 block north on Clermont
A & C trains to Lafayette Ave. – walk 4 blocks east on Greene, walk 1 block north on Clermont
The Walkmen – “Louisiana”, Brooklyn, NY, 12/16/08
The Walkmen – “The Rat”, Brooklyn, NY, 12/16/08
The Walkmen – “On the Water”, Brooklyn, NY, 12/16/08
The Walkmen – “Another One Goes By”, Brooklyn, NY, 12/16/08
Dan Deacon – “Crystal Cat”, Brooklyn, NY, 12/11/08
Broken Social Scene – “K.C. Accidental”, Brooklyn, NY, 10/24/08
Man Man – “Doo Right”, Brooklyn, NY, 4/11/08
Man Man – “The Ballad of Butter Beans”, Brooklyn, NY, 4/11/08
Man Man – “Banana Ghost”, Brooklyn, NY, 4/11/08
Yeasayer – “2080”, Brooklyn, NY, 4/11/08
Sunset Rubdown – “5/4 Silver Moons” (new song), Brooklyn, NY, 3/27/08