“Thanks for staying up so late with us,” the Brooklyn-based band Pterodactyl said after the recording. Well, the pleasure was on our side. But what time was it? Uhm, something after 4 a.m. What could have been a rather dull Monday night in early spring in Vienna was transferred into fun craziness. Jesse, Joe and Matt have not had a good night’s rest for a while. A bottle of whisky was making the round and beer bottles were rolling on the ground. I guess, we all probably felt a little worn out when gathering after the show at the nightly square next to vast stairs of the city library. Yet all were in a pretty good and relaxed mood. Small groups of people, who were attending the show, also made their way from the venue to the square. And some of them accompanied Pterodactyl’s performance with stamping and clapping. All those who know their normal noisy recordings might be aware of the challenge that it meant for the trio to perform “Bite Into Blood” and “Allergy Shots” in such a reduced setup. So with figuring out on-site what to play and how to play it, Pterodactyl did an impressive job at improvisation.
In 1982 the square was named after Urban Loritz, a socially committed priest in the parish of Schottenfeld. Urban-Loritz-Platz comprises a small park and and a public transport junction surrounded by the heavily trafficked Gürtel street. It marks an intersection between the gentrified and collegiate 7th district on the one and a multicultural area on the other side of the Gürtel with around 70.000 people getting daily on and off trams and the underground U6 here. The square is canopied by a gently-curved canvas-resembling roof that opens up to the impressive Hauptbücherei, Vienna’s main public library with the city’s largest perron. The elongate building with terracotta walls was designed by architect Ernst Mayr and opened up in 2003 as an upvaluation of the Gürtel area. Above the listed underground route from famous Art Nouveau architect Otto Wagner and in between two busy streets the library stretches out like a ship with just small bull’s-eyes to its flanks, but a substantantial translucence and transparency inside. On 6000 square meters 240 000 books and 60 000 audiovisual media are accommodated. The well-attended Hauptbücherei with Café Canetti on its roof terrace offers new perspectives on the city. Standing out Urban-Loritz-Platz the library provides a panoramic view from its accessible top and contributes to a harmonisation of the inner and outer city.