Going to raves and afterhours events in Detroit can take you to some pretty out of the way locations and venues. These places can vary from odd and upscale to dirty and abandoned. Mack and Bellevue, a warehouse nicknamed after its cross streets that formerly stood on Detroit’s east side, was probably one of the dirtiest of the dirty.
Mack and Bellevue was a faded, long-abandoned brick warehouse in a really rough neighborhood of Detroit. The building itself was decaying and one of the dirtiest places I ever remember going to raves at. It was one of those places where you come out into the sunlight in the morning and are astounded at how your shoes and the lower half of your pant legs are covered in black filth. The only bathrooms I ever remember seeing there were porta-potties that were set up in a truck bay.
Despite the general underground grittiness that comes to mind when I think about Mack and Bellevue, it was home to some amazing events and truly memorable times. I remember seeing all of the Sonic Groove DJs (Frankie Bones, Adam X, Heather Heart) there at one time or another, and this was the first place I ever heard anybody spin jungle. The warehouse would always be packed to the gills, and its low lighting and cavernous size always made for a very special vibe.
I was told some years ago that the warehouse had burned and then was torn down. I took a drive down Mack once day and confirmed this; an overgrown empty lot now occupies the southwest corner of Mack and Bellevue. Another venue that only exists in the collective memory of some Detroit electronic music fans, and maybe a few surviving pictures or party flyers.