In September 2007 we said hello and in January 2014 we said goodbye. They came and not only conquered, but also will have left their circular imprint on Leeds for years to come. The southern raised Josh Tweek and Brinsley Kazak set out to put on a party for music lovers and give the proceeds to charity. Just over 6 years later Louche are known all over the world for their diverse and sought after podcast series not to mention setting up new club night bases in both London and Berlin. We may all have our favourite moments we hold dear but we at Movement want to know where they believe the magic happened.
We hand over to Louche to find out what they feel have been the important moments in their journey…
1. Opening Party for Oxjam. Mint Club. September 2007.
I sometimes think we could have booked anyone between 2009 and 2011 and still sold outThe start of it all. Brins applied for the ‘Oxjam Music Festival’ a charity thing where you can get a grant from Oxfam to put on a music event. Seeing as pretty much all we (Brins, Ed, Rochey, Franks and myself) did was just mix all the time in bedrooms and go to Basics on weekends, putting on our own party always felt pretty inevitable. Oxjam was the perfect starting block.
So we approached Mint Club, who didn’t have any house/techno stuff in there in 2007; Asylum, Technique had both recently left, and the club was to be honest a little run down. Anyway, Val liked our proposal; Ed, Brins and I went down to the club dressed smart to give it to her haha. We booked an event in for September ’07 headlined by Paco Osuna, supported by Dave Martin and Jay Kilka from Technique, myself and Laura Jones (little known fact she was a rezzie for our first year) and Brins and Ed played too. We promoted the arse off it and got pretty good numbers, just under 400 if I remember rightly. After it’s success we asked Val if we could do it once a month. She said yes, and we ran Louche in the (old) Mint Club all the way till summer 2008. A shout out is due to the lads from Chimpanzoo- our mates’ house on Victoria road where we hosted some pretty out of control after parties all year.
2. First Louche at the New Mint Club. October 2008.
In the summer of ’08 Shane Graham bought Mint Club and splashed some serious wedge on transforming the club into what it is today, including the killer soundsystem and ceiling light panel. We came back from summer holidays and it was all done. Amazing turn around, we were well impressed. For our first party of the new season we invited Miss Fitz and Seth Troxler again (we booked him the first time in October 07, his first ever trip to England).
3. Louche Vs Twaddle. Wire. September 2009.
A year later we got together with fellow Leeds Promoters Twaddle, for a three way doo at Wire. We don’t really know how or why, but the response to this party was through the roof. Complete sell out and literally a road block outside the club all night.This party was so significant as it was a sign of things to come, for the next two years of Louche we were pretty much untouchable; selling out shows every month with over 700 people. I sometimes think we could have booked anyone between 2009 and 2011 and still sold out.
4. Volcano Party! Mint Club. April 2010.
2010 began as 2009 had ended, and we were seriously on a roll. April came around and we were super buzzing to announce we had Zip and Margaret Dygas coming over. Zip was, and still is one of our all time faves. The response was awesome, we pressed loads of tickets, and then on the friday before the show, a fucking volcano in Iceland decided to erupt. Volcanic ash messed with the whole of Europe’s flights for the weekend. We toyed with the idea of trains or the ferry to get our Berlin based DJs to Leeds, but it just wasn’t feasible. So we had to cancel them, and luckily managed to get Cecille Record’s Anthea and Alex Celler to catch the train up from London (their euro gigs had been grounded that weekend too). We were worried that all the Zip fans who had bought tickets wouldn’t be up for the lineup change, but thankfully the name of Louche pulled us through, and the show was killer. We rebooked Zip and Dygas the following year, and put a massive volcano on the flyer. Lolcano.
5. 3rd Birthday. Mint Club. November 2010.
Easily our busiest party ever. Pretty uncomfortable to be honest, someone actually got stretchered out cause they passed out. Anyway, despite the heat the party really was amazing. This was Visionquest’s first ever show in England (it would have been the first in the world if DC 10 hadn’t pipped us to it a few weeks before in Ibiza). We bought loads of inflatables and assorted party accessories and costumes; the atmosphere was like a proper carnival. This was also the first time we threw an afters in Distrikt. My memories are hazy, but I can clearly remember Shaun Reeves getting cuffed round the ear from Jonny Distrikt for smoking a doobie in the Dj booth!
6. Nico Jaar Live. Mint Club. January 2011.
Another exclusive followed in January 2011; Nico Jaar’s Leeds debut. He’d been blowing up for about 18 months before the party, so by the time we confirmed the booking he was almost at pop star level, all the girls in the club were getting pictures with him and shit. His live set to this day was the best we have ever booked, not seen a crowd respond to a live set in the same way before, what with him on the mic and everything. Really was pretty special. I warmed up, and Brins and Franks closed it down. Next level party. The fact we did it on a Sunday night made it even more notable.
7. Louche in London. The Gramaphone. February 2011.
Brinsley had moved down to London in early 2010. Our first party in the capital was actually in Sept 2010, but I’ve picked our second show there as a more significant moment. This was the first time we had met Prosumer; to this day one of the loveliest and most talented House DJs we have worked with. Achim accepted the gig because of the intimate nature of the request: The Gramaphone in Shoreditch was barely 200 capacity and this really appealed to the then Panoramabar resident supreme. He completely smashed it, and i think it’s fair to say that this party signified a major change in our booking policy, moving more towards straight up US house sounding bookings. All of our closest mates came down on the train, and we all hopped on the train back to Leeds straight after. Funnest train journey of my life. The photos of everyone messing about in the train station with the lightbox are just too good.
8. Louche Vs System. Nation of Shopkeepers. May 2011.
We’ve teamed up with system, our techno brothers at Mint Club many times now. We threw lots of good co-parties, recently at The Mint Warehouse and back in the day at Nation Of Shopkeepers. The city centre venue with a lovely walled courtyard was home to 5 bank holiday summer shows, and this one in late May 2011 was my favourite; with Steve Bug, John Tejada and a young Axel Boman, who was visiting Leeds for the first time. It was a great day and night. What was so good about these shows was taking on the Faversham Garden Parties. It was not an easy job! They used to be amazing, we were involved with them between ’08 and ’10. But the crowd had really started to turn by 2011, it became so popular that the electro fake tan crowd started going, and in my opinion ruining it. So it was nice to offer another Bank Holiday option for house heads in Leeds, for people that don’t wear sunglasses inside!
9. Moodymann. March 2012.
My favourite Louche ever. We’d been wanting to book Moody since pretty much day one, but his fee, flights for him and his manager from Detroit, plus being able to get a response from his agent proved very tricky. When we finally locked it down we were over the moon. And we were even more over the moon when he showed up at the club and delivered one of the most electric sets we’ve ever booked. With his ‘Security Team’ in tow, he ploughed through his massive bag of records like a true pro, working the mic in his trademark style. Leeds went nuts for it.
10 Louche x RBMA. Plan B, London. January 2013.
Brins had locked down a contract with Red Bull Music Academy in 2012, and the funding from them allowed us to book some pretty outrageous lineups that we simply couldn’t finance on our own. The Jan 2013 show was for me the best: Omar S, Kyle Hall, Hunnee, Simoncino and Mr Beatnick. Our London home for 2 years Plan B in Brixton was treated to a real spectacle that night.
11. First Berlin Party. Chalet. August 2013.
And finally, the beginning of the next chapter of Louche. I moved to Berlin a year ago, having spent 8 wonderful years living in Leeds. It was always at the back of my mind to do Louche out there sometime. So I arranged to meet with the guys at Chalet Club, a wicked 500 capacity venue in Kreuzberg. Turns out it was pretty easy to book in our first event; they had already heard of us in the UK, and welcomed us in with open arms. The event was killer, and it was really refreshing to throw a Louche without the restrictions you can come across in England; the party went on till 1 pm on Sunday afternoon for example. We followed it up in December with our second show, and now I’m on the lookout to use a new venue for 2014. As Leeds ends a new city starts. Quite nice the way it’s all worked out.
So, there you have it from the men that made it happen. Not much can be said apart from it was one hell of a good story and we are all grateful to be characters. We wish you well on your journey to pastures new and we will be sure to continue reporting back to your followers. What a beginning, what a middle…