After I recommended in an April 10 column that Kansas City get a rock venue that's bigger than the Record Bar but smaller than the Beaumont Club, Chip Mitchell called to say this town already has a club that size: Crosstown Station. Mitchell owns it.
At 1522 McGee, it's just across Interstate 70 from the Sprint Center, distinctly apart from the Power & Light District. I'd heard the club was swanky, but honestly I hadn't felt compelled to go. Its calendar seemed full of cover acts and jam bands.
But that could be changing.
Mitchell, a veteran of the local jam scene (he played with Bad Abby), had hoped to run a blues-oriented club but has broadened his focus. Now, he says, "anything between hardcore music and rap" is on the table. "I don't want anything that anyone can come in here and be offended by."
On April 26, Crosstown hosted the Republic Tigers. It was one of those ultra-hipster, anyone-who's-anyone-is-there nights. Having sweated out too many similar events for a bad view of the stage elsewhere in town, I loved being in a bigger club with good sound, a multi-leveled floor and clean bathrooms. Plus, it was superclassy when the heavy blue curtains on the stage separated to indicate the beginning of the Tigers' set.
The curtains didn't have the same dramatic effect last Saturday when the Belated, Life in Jersey and Action Figure played to a sparse crowd of about 50. But it would be cool to see them drawn on the type of national acts that tend to overpack the Record Bar.
There's still a lot of jam on Crosstown's calendar. But I hope Mitchell keeps up with his plans. His club is cool. Whether it's indie rock or blues, more live music is only good for Kansas City.