Now That's Music

Good beer, loud tunes on the West Side.

Now That’s Class punk West Side Cleveland Lakewood Cheap Tragedies microbrew Destructor Alternative Press Russell Simmons Beatles
Nelly Furtado at Time Warner Cable Amphitheater at Tower City. - Walter Novak
Nelly Furtado at Time Warner Cable Amphitheater at Tower City.
"We're not the kind of place that has Bud and Miller," says John Bomba, co-owner of Now That's Class. On the Cleveland-Lakewood border, the new club is the kind of place that has microbrews and a jukebox loaded up with Iron Maiden, Blue Cheer, Pentagram, the Cro-Mags, Hank Williams, Bob Marley, and Gary Numan.

And if the jukebox's diverse selection isn't extreme enough for your tastes, the two-room club also has a performance space that hosts underground bands hailing from Cleveland to San Diego. With scraped hardwood floors, the concert room looks like a miniature high-school gym. And once shows get sweaty, the vibe is complete.

The clientele's punk contingent skank to bands like Toronto's Fucked Up and Nashville's Life Trap. Groups play on a raised stage under a modest lighting rig. The venue hosted this year's Horrible Fest (a weekend-long punk bash), and future concerts include a set by Dayton/San Francisco hardcore legends Toxic Reasons. It's also become a popular spot with rough-hewn local bands like the Cheap Tragedies and Fascist Insect.

Bomba and co-owner Paul Schlachter are Clevelanders who moved to New York City to cut their teeth in the foodservice industry. They moved back to open a bar and took over the space at 11213 Detroit Avenue, formerly gay clubs the Edge and Club Deco. Some of the former patrons have remained, rubbing elbows with one of the city's more eclectic crowds in a barroom that's decorated with faux marble and a tin-plated ceiling.

On nights without live bands, DJs host musical theme nights, spinning everything from hardcore to Bob Dylan. Tuesdays, the club offers up vegan sloppy joes. Bomba says the hard-drinking, hard-dancing community is underserved.

"I just think Cleveland's been lacking a decent music scene for years," he says. "We're going to have good music and good beers."

· Cleveland metal legends Destructor will headline Michigan's Midwest Metal Anthem 2007, Saturday, August 25. The band has no plans to repress the Storm of Steel EP, which sold out at Germany's Keep It True festival. But Auburn Records CEO Bill Peters says the new Forever in Leather LP may be finished by then.

· Alternative Press' XM Satellite Radio show, The AP Show, is now available without subscription. Free podcasts of weekly episodes are posted at the iTunes store. Editors Jason Pettigrew and Scott Heisel play and discuss punk, emo, and rock bands from My Chemical Romance to Moneen. The magazine also produces AP Podcast, another free download that features founder-publisher Mike Shea's long interviews with figures such as Fall Out Boy's Pete Wentz and Warped Tour Founder Kevin Lyman.

· Author Dave Schwensen will sign copies of The Beatles in Cleveland Friday, June 15 at Borders Express Tower City (230 West Huron), from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

· Hip-hop/fashion mogul Russell Simmons will appear at Barnes & Noble Eaton Square (28801 Chagrin Boulevard, 216-765-7520), Thursday, June 14 at 7 p.m. The co-founder of Def Jam records and founder of Phat Farm clothing will answer questions and sign his new book, Do You! 12 Laws to Access the Power in You to Achieve Happiness and Success. Visit for an exclusive interview with Simmons.

· Look busy at work: Visit Scene's blogs for exclusive online content, updated daily with video clips, breaking news, and free downloads. This week's features include links to a free live EP from the Black Keys.

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