Molly's Kitchen & Lounge (1611 Calle Lorca, 983-7577) is straight-up amazing. For music, I mean.
Y'see, like a million other people who had driven past the restaurant while heading to The Candyman, I always kind of thought that it seemed spooky and it repelled young people by nature, and so, I promised myself that I would never, ever go inside. But all that changed when local arts and music collectives and Mesa Recordings got their hooks into the place some time ago, and it has now been transformed (figuratively, as I assume the insides are the same as ever) into just about the coolest concert space/bar that Santa Fe has to offer. Boiled down, start loving this place right now.
5. It's Huge!
Though relatively nondescript from the outside, the interior of Molly's is what one might call cavernous. OK, that's a bit of a stretch, but with a full bar to the left of the building and a gigantic stage/dance floor area to the right, it is possible to host the types of bands that would have concerns over turnout. In other words, if a promoter does a proper job, there's plenty of room for all kinds of people to enjoy live music while having the space to dance like a bunch of maniacs.
4. They're Nice!
The staff and ownership of Molly's has evidently welcomed this new musical bent with open arms. It's understandably nerve-wracking to open your business up to us lousy young people, but given recent events like a handful of house/techno shows courtesy of Mesa Recordings or a mind-numbingly awesome performance from New York gospel/pop/rock act Diane Coffee acting as support for Tennessee alt-country heroes, Those Darlins, the folks behind the curtain have proven they're open to just about anything. Plus, this one dude behind the bar totally brewed me up a fresh cup of coffee when I told him I didn't really drink.
3. All-Ages Welcome!
Again and again you'll hear people lamenting a lack of venues that can serve both drinkers and under-21-ers. If it works for Albuquerque club The Launchpad (and does it ever work), it could or should work in Santa Fe. Given the split layout of Molly's, all-ages events are a no-brainer. Granted, elements like security and bouncers will need to be considered, but being open and available to all seems a logical and positive next step. According to Meow Wolf's Vince Kadlubek, all-ages events have been met with enthusiasm. "We've done a couple shows all-ages…like Purity Ring was a good one," he says. "If it's the right fit, we'll do more."
2. It's In Town!
Know how driving out to Sol Santa Fe was always such a drag? Well, you can say sayonara to that long, horrifying trek and any bummed-out feelings that come from not being able to responsibly enjoy a beer without a designated driver or bajillion dollar cab ride. Molly's is right there off Llano Street, a mere few minutes further than all y'all's precious downtown hotspots. This doesn't mean you justify something as stupid as drinking and driving, but it should cut down on cab costs. Plus, with a little bit of luck, shows won't be cancelled in between acts like other venues have been known to do.
1. It's Affordable!
Promoters rejoice when they find out that all one needs in order to book Molly's is to provide security for the event. We live in an Internet age, friends, and though the importance of physical flyers cannot be ignored, word-of-mouth and Facebook seem to be king in terms of spreading the word. The bottom line is that not paying any rental fees leaves a lot of wiggle room in terms of what bands can be booked and how much money can be made. Hey, everybody: Stage more shows here. Thanks.