After an endless stream of pandemic restrictions and lockdowns, the landscape of Singapore’s clubbing scene has transformed. Deeper than a mere desire to let loose in a club filled with strangers, finding an enclave where we could express ourselves authentically matters more now than ever before.
Raves offer a vibrant respite—a sense of optimism, a jolt of unadulterated creativity and the uplifting warmth of community. While they have long been a part of the global zeitgeist—think of the legendary techno clubs of Berlin and fabled drag balls of New York City—the eclectic world of rave culture has gradually found its way to our native city.
To the amateur party-goer, a club or underground rave may sound like the same thing: a dark venue packed to the brim, stocked with an abundance of booze and an undertone of youthful brazenness. Unlike a conventional club that plays a mix of pop and EDM, however, underground raves typically cater to a specific subculture. From deep house to psychedelic trance, each event draws in passionate devotees of the genre.
Underground party collectives can be recognised by their uniquely captivating posters, which often take inspiration from a myriad of subcultures and pop culture references. Nestled at the intersection of music and creative expression, these distinctive posters are bold and often carry a social message, echoing the inclusivity of the spaces they represent.
While cis-heteronormative norms still run the show in most nightlife settings, raves have historically been viewed as a form of counter-culture. In that same vein, the underground parties and raves in Singapore provide a safe space for anyone who does’t fit into society’s conventions, like members of the LGBTQ+ community, neurodivergent individuals, racial minorities and more.
1 / 5
North East Social Club
A cult favourite amongst electronic music lovers, this independent collective has been organising events at renowned joints like Cherry Discotheque and Tuff Club since 2019. Initially started as a passion project, North East Social Club has slowly evolved into a household name in the underground scene. Guided by a desire to showcase up-and-coming talent, expect to catch high-spirited live performances by local artists or vibe to a dynamic line-up of regional DJs—like Bongomann of Ice Cream Sundays, local indie band Cosmic Child and many more eclectic acts.
2 / 5
Conversion Therapy Clinic
This queer-friendly speakeasy features a tongue-in-cheek facade that emulates a real clinic, with consultation fees plastered on the walls, blue plastic chairs lined outside and a signboard that starkly reads ‘Neil Conversion Clinic’. One step in and you’ll be transported into a vibrantly immersive world of colourful strobe lights and quirky photo walls. Known for rambunctious drag performances and distinctive theme nights, drop by for an Ariana Grande sing-along or a nostalgic throwback night. Pick your poison from dangerously delicious martinis and shooters—and if you’re game enough, a liquid buffet.
3 / 5
Hosted by Blackout Agency Asia and Jagermeister, Escape 56 is a secret location pop-up party series. A collective that reimagines empty spaces into unique nightlife experiences, each hedonistic party is underpinned by the enigmatic appeal of a ‘secret’ location; with the venue being revealed only after tickets are purchased. More than a sensory escape for party-goers, the magnum opus of Escape 56 is its musically intoxicating sets. Featuring some of the most renowned electronic and techno DJs globally—including DJ Paramida, a resident DJ of Berlin institution Berghain—their buzzy line-ups never fail to disappoint.
4 / 5
Beloved amongst underground nightlife aficionados, Tuff Club is an electrifying playground located in the heart of the CBD. Often a hotspot for jaded clubbers who seek an extra edge, or audiophiles who show up for a special act, Tuff Club is best known for its genre-bending sets—alternating between Progressive House, Techno, Acid and Industrial. Credited with reviving local club culture, Tuff Club’s infectious melodies and inclusive approach to nightlife have not only allowed it to flourish over the years but cemented its legacy as a treasured rave spot.
5 / 5
A self-proclaimed ‘queer rave space’, Bussy Temple is fluid, unrecognisable and everything in between. An LGBTQ+ friendly collective that spotlights non-binary and femme DJs from the Southeast Asian region, expect a medley of eclectic soundscapes from techno to psychedelic tunes. With transcendental music and subversive themes, Bussy Temple parties invite you to contemplate the existential notions of society and gender constructs in a creative enclave. Guided by a progressive philosophy that stems from its house rules, Bussy Temple provides an eclectic, uplifting space for everyone—but most notably, for trans and non-binary folk.