Watcha Clan + Nomad Sound System, A Wild 18th B-day for Koepi, Berlinopolis Tales on the Eastern Tilt…

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One of Berlin’s canal-side venue gems, the GlasHaus at Arena hosted Watcha Clan (now signed with Piranha) and Nomad Sound System on a powerhouse diaspora double bill Saturday nite, and with dj Pepe Vargas from Terra Beats keeping it bouncing for a last, mostly balkan, round. W-Clan is a high-energy Marseille-based band with a “multi-Port” sound mixing flavors of Barcelona, Casablanca, Oran and Algiers… along with some novel electronica/drum and bass/dub elements that take it sailing over the edge, at points almost rave/psy-trance -like but much more deeply rooted. Likewise Berlin’s own Nomad Sound System opened the evening with their Rai-infused ethno-trippin beats that are fully charged with otherworld layers by Tomoki Ikeda’s programming, Dj Shazam’s turntables (+ bass), and David Beck’s intricate string riffs. Karim Sfaxi and percussionist Miloud Messabih keep it deliciously grounded in the soulful Mediterranean and oasis-like grooves.

A few listening tips ( and related) :

Nomad Sound Systems’ track No W Peace

Watcha Clan’s Tchiribm + Balkan Qoulou

Dj Shazam with Spark, Bukhara Gardens

MC Sufferah with Nomad, Atarashi

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On the way home, we couldn’t resist stopping in for the Koepi squat’s 18th birthday… it’s been of the illustriously illegal age from the outset in 1990, but now we’ve seen the end-of-the-world-circus punks and a diverse band of outsiders all ripe and ready (and plenty intoxicated) to keep the Koepenicker autonomous domains on the unforgiving dusk-to-dawn loop, as well as holding fast the fort against a gentrified channel district plan now being hyped as the Media Spree.

We only snapped this last foto on the evening of, cause it all seemed as though one might disturb the ephemeral and magick setting by capturing any imagery of a secret species and their nocturnal habitat, but suffice to say, there were numerous scenes worthy of an Anti-Oscar epic film, each playing out like a raw, mad and thrashing version of Fellini-meets-Bunuel taking a full piss on western civilization. Reminiscent of Gysin’s hallucinated Beat Hotel tales ( The Last Museum), this was a swirling bardo of bad habits and seriously-indulged debauchery… mostly with cheeky smiles … or lunacy’s grin.

[ note: Koepi’s long history on the Mitte/Kruezberg - Ost/West- faultline is an important chapter in the contemporary European struggles for both a self-determined living space and non-commercial cultural venues. And it faces some serious challenges in the coming months. Follow the Koepi187 news here. Koepi Bleibt!]

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