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DNA BLN is one of the best places to catch up-and-coming bands in Berlin. Last year’s inaugural edition introduced us to Losers, a band we love so much we played them on the very first Radio überlin. This time around, we’re looking forward to discovering another handful of hot new acts including… the fierce Candice Gordon (pictured), Lion Sphere – who splice Peter Gabriel world vibes with alt-J, and are every bit as good as that sounds – and Metryk, who specialise in darkly beautiful synth pop. Here’s a playlist of all the acts appearing on the night, and all the event details you need. See you in Magnet!
DNA BLN Launch Party [Facebook event]
Thursday 26th March, 8pm
Magnet Club, Falckensteinstr. 48, 10997 Berlin, Germany
If there’s one thing I never thought I would try out – let alone enjoy – it’s BDSM. I haven’t read Fifty Shades of Grey, didn’t know much about its plot before the movie came out, and where I come from this particular kink isn’t as common as it seems to be here.
Before moving to Berlin, I was convinced that only balding, overweight middle-aged men and faded menopausal women were into BDSM, and there was nothing glamorous about that. Sure, I had been to KitKatClub before, but I never gave much thought to what I saw or heard there. And I certainly didn’t identify with the men who crawled past me on all fours wearing dog collars. But, as with many other things, my opinion on this whole scene has changed drastically over the past months.
It all started with an OkCupid match with two guys sharing a joint profile and looking for girls to have threesomes with.
Their writing was very much “on point” and I really wanted to meet them, despite not even knowing what they looked like – their faces were hidden on all of their pictures. Shortly before our first date, they sent me pictures that screamed BDSM. Women tied up, a girl with a gag in her mouth, a man holding a whip…
I was surprised to find that these pictures really appealed to me. Perhaps that was because of the Vogue-esque aesthetic – after all, Slutever has a column on vogue.com now. I didn’t end up having a threesome, but I did meet up with one of the guys for what was to be my first ever blind date. Luckily, he turned out to be a really handsome and surprisingly normal man in his late twenties.
For the first time, I let a complete stranger choke me. He spanked me, and not in the ridiculous, almost cute way some boys had tried to hit me before. This was for real.
The next day, I noticed that my breasts were covered in bruises, but the emotional traces of the night were much more palpable than these physical marks. I felt ecstatic.
I had my second experience a few weeks later. I met an incredibly good-looking man at KitKatClub and he quickly suggested going back to his place. Shortly before we reached his front door, he asked me whether I had ever heard of Fifty Shades. I told him that I had, and was in fact very curious about its themes – despite having little to no experience of them.
What happened then was one of my best memories so far. Once we got to his place, he quickly vanished and came back holding a crazy amount of BDSM toys and accessories. We ended up trying most of them out and he was incredibly patient, caring and open during the whole process. He taught me how to use each of them, asked me which ones I preferred and why, and helped me find out what my boundaries were. When I went home the next day, I realised I felt even more high than I had the first time.
As of now, I am meeting up with a guy who has agreed to be my sex master. He’s teaching me about the more psychological aspects of BDSM, which is fascinating. Our last session involved me being tied to a chair, blindfolded, with a vibrator strapped between my legs, and told not to come unless he allowed me to. He hardly touched me except for several soothing kisses, but here again I couldn’t believe how satisfying the evening was.
Also, and because this is Berlin after all, my flatmates and I recently had a slave over. He posted an ad online offering to go to women’s houses and clean them for free. Since we’re curious (and lazy), I decided to take him up on his offer. I was asked to boss him around a little, and after a few emails we agreed on a date and time.
I couldn’t help but nervously laugh as he made his way up the stairs. I had no idea what to expect, and the fact that one of my flatmates had showed me which kitchen knife to use in case things went wrong wasn’t really helping. Our “slave” also turned out to be relatively normal. I had no idea how to boss him around at first, but after a few hours I got pretty comfortable – so much, in fact, that I had to repress the urge to be bossy to the cab driver and the barkeeper, and pretty much everyone else I encountered afterwards.
As I’d been told before, control is everything here, so there is definitely room for improvement on my part, but I think I might actually enjoy playing the role of dominator as well. For the record, I have no idea how someone could gain satisfaction from cleaning a house, let alone for free and while putting up with orders from someone else.
But if there’s one thing I’ve learned since moving here, it’s that you should avoid judging people. After all, the boundary between normal and shocking is very thin, and Berlin is, and should remain, a place where people are free to behave as they please.
I can’t believe I’m going to miss this! For some reason, the (actual) geniuses behind Thai & Techno have decided to save their spring edition for the one week I’m out of town. However, they did take pity on me, and invited us to a preview of their fusion of delicious food and crispy beats, for a taste of what I’m missing.
And what a taste! We enjoyed pad thai spring rolls, the best Massaman curry we’ve had in ages, and an intriguing dessert of black rice and banana. The perfect boozy accompaniment came in the form of Redwood bar’s Rad Thai cocktail, a potent blend of vodka, shredded carrot, lime, chilli and coriander. Lush!
To enjoy all this, and a soundtrack from slow hypnotic sounds to dancefloor techno, make sure you’re at FluxBau on Friday March 27th, from 6pm til late. Scroll down for a short video from the inaugural Thai & Techno, and get full details of the big night here.