‘The UK is missing out’: Nottingham based promoter bringing Berlin club culture to the city

Video: Anna Butler speaks to Louis Knight about bringing Berlin culture to Nottingham

Not content after experiencing Berlin’s famous club culture, a nightclub promoter is bringing a taste of it back with him to Nottingham.

Louis Knight, 21, originally from Leicester, is the founder of The Waves – a new music event based at Rough Trade Records in Nottingham on Berlin’s love for house and techno music.

He wants to break down what he thinks are stereotypes surrounding what people think about house and techno nights and believes he can get people of all ages on board.

With nights starting in the early evening until midnight offering Berlin themed street food and German beer, he says the relaxed atmosphere inside a techno venue is different to what people might expect.

Louis spoke to Anna Butler about what Nottingham can learn from Berlin and how it all started for him.


“Berlin is famous worldwide for its clubs such as Berghain, hailed as the ‘church of techno’.

They have such a variety over there, including clubs that open early doors where you can have food by the canal; it brings a sense of relaxation and intimacy to the house and techno scene.

I think the whole of the UK is missing out on this kind of culture, especially after living in Berlin and loving that relaxation within the venue.

You don’t have to go and take loads of drugs and have to deal with the day after, you can come to a very respectable event and enjoy the music.

The Waves at Rough Trade Records

An aspect I try to bring to the house and techno scene is a sense of community because you arrive early doors and you get familiar with faces.

I wanted to start The Waves because I personally want to go into a career in music.

I actually got onto a music business course in Berlin, however it’s privately funded and I couldn’t afford £50,000 for living fees and student fees.

I thought over the next few years I would try and establish myself within the industry.

The Waves bringing Berlin culture to Nottingham

The headline acts I have for my event at Rough Trade on May 19 are Josh Gregg and Jake Twell; they’re both very established DJs within the industry.

Josh is only 21-years-old so I think bringing him as an headline act in Nottingham, because he studies here, will be good for him to show the city that he lives in what he’s got.

I get local artists to produce art that I put on display around the venues.

I have sourced two psychedelic projectors and I have an architectural designer to create a geometric moving image to create a sense of immersion.

Rough Trade will host the next Waves event on 19 May

I like to use Rough Trade because we are keeping it within the independent music industry.

“There’s no limit to where The Waves can go”

The venue upstairs is very intimate and they have a good quality sound system and the guys here are very easy to get along with.

In the long run I have a lot of ideas I would like to push The Waves in, whether we turn it into a Wavey record label or a collective of DJs I manage myself.

At the minute I’m looking for DJs from Bristol, Manchester and Leeds to feature on our SoundCloud guest mix series, where we release a guest mix every week from local DJs from the Nottingham area or artists that have approached me.

We have another event on June 27 at The Bodega and we are taking over both floors; the event is running for 10 hours and we have 10 DJs.”

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