The 4th edition of Berlin’s UNDERGROUND EUROPE, a unique record fair and swap event exclusively focused on underground vinyl, is taking place on Saturday, October 5th, and just like the last year, we’ve teamed up with Adam from Goodwill Records, who organizes this special event every year, to give you an insightful presentation and a small teaser to get you pumped! Adam has been very kind to share his thoughts on its history, venue location and specifically this year’s edition! Check it out.
As you know, we began in 2015, organizing the first event at a venue called Marie Antoinette, underneath the train tracks and just above the river, in the centre of Berlin.
The idea was to create an underground fair; a place where people of similar taste to mine will not have to go through thousands of cheap Rock or Disco records pressed in the 70s and 80s in order to find something of their interest. How many times has it happened that you wasted hours of your time digging through crate of records just to find nothing? So I thought, let´s have a place that is like dozens of cool shops or mailorders all in one space. And so we started; first with all the local sellers in 2015. Then next year we covered different parts of Germany, as our invitations got taken by people from other places. And little by little we started getting both international sellers as well as international visitors.
Change of place:
Marie Antoinette was a great venue for us and probably one of the most scenic clubs in Berlin, as you are literally a meter above the water. On a sunny day you have sunrays reflecting on the surface of the river creating a beautiful play of shadows on the walls. People loved hanging out there, enjoying the afternoon with music and food and vinyl all around. The only downside to it was that the venue is not exactly easy to find. Hidden behind three towers and underneath train tracks, outside the usual routes, we had the feeling we should explore other options closer to where all the action in Berlin is. So we moved to Cassiopeia last year.
The club is situated in a club hub called RAW, comprising places like Astra, Urban Spree, Badehaus and others. The location was great and the possibility of having different rooms was also fitting. For example, this allowed us to have live music in the smaller room, while the majority of the sellers were in the next one.
Another concept we introduced last year was that of the “flying tables”. Over the years we noticed that some people bring great records to the swap but are not sure how to display them or exchange them with others. So we introduced these tables that you can rent on the go, even if just for an hour or two. Instead of paying the full day worth of a table, you just rent it for very little money for the time you want and that´s it.
When we started this idea I had one place in mind: SO36. The club is one of the oldest clubs in Berlin and is associated with the counter-culture and underground music. In the 80s bands like Dead Kennedys, Black Flag, The Damned, Buzzcocks,… all played there. But we started with a two day concept and this never worked out with SO36. Every year I would ask them and I´d always get the same answer: “We can´t have a two day record fair”. So when we switched to one day only, we finally managed to find a date hence this year Underground Europe is happening at SO36.
As far as the program goes, besides the DJs spinning the best of underground music (punk, hardcore, metal, crust, goth, industrial,…) we have three book presentations. First we´ll have Gerfried Ambrosch from Vienna who will be presenting his books “Punk Matters” (interviews with punk luminaries like Jello Biafra, Ian Mackaye, Henry Rollins, Russ Rankin, Greg Bennick, Ray Cappo,…) and Poetry Of Punk.
Then we´ll have the presentation of the book “”Dritti Contro Un Muro” compiled by Giorgio Senesi, which is the bible of the 80s Italian hardcore/punk. Over 500 pages, 140 interviews, tons of photos, flyers, record and tape covers and more. Bands like Negazione, Wretched, Nabat, Indigesti, Raw Power, Basta, Peggio Punx, Impact, Cani, Stigmathe, Rappresaglia,… With the presentation we´ll also have an exhibition of live photos from the time (1980-1989).
The rest is, as you know, thousands of records ranging from punk to extreme metal and everything in between and people bringing their own records to trade. Good times guaranteed!
The next edition of Underground Europe will take place on Saturday 5th of October at SO36 in Berlin starting at noon!