If you spend enough time at Duff’s Brooklyn, you’ll wake up the next morning seeing red. The metal bar just off the Marcy stop of the JMZ line has hundreds of red chile pepper and what we’ll call “bloodcicle” string lights hanging from the ceiling, illuminating the kitsch—elegantly framed band and movie posters, all-access laminates, old porn—covering every wall. There are more than a few clues that Duff’s Brooklyn was formerly Bellevue Bar in Hell’s Kitchen until rising rents shoved it south. This bar is still a pit stop for metal and hardcore bands on tour as well as regulars who come by on Sunday nights to run the jukebox for free. It’s a curated collection that includes classic Judas Priest cuts (live! Chicago! ’81!), New York bands like Carnivore and Cro-Mags (albeit their worst record), as well as new releases. Then there’s the “Wheel of Misfortune” drinking wheel, which is why you might end up spending the entire night here.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on October 16, 2013