We talk to exclusively to top London promoters, LWE.
We’ve had a chat with the heads behind London Warehouse Events, or LWE as you probably know them. As far as events go they’re leading the way in the Capital. If you’ve raving in London over the past few years then you’ve most likely stepped foot into one of their mind blowing parties.
They’re the group behind the huge parties at Tobacco Docks, co-hosts of Junction 2 Festival, the founders of the mighty Printworks, brought elrow & Arcadia to London all while throwing proper belters at venues across the city including Great Suffolk Street Warehouse, Studio Spaces, and Fabric. Well known and loved in London, they’ve been or filling the diaries of ravers across London and beyond.
We wanted to get to know the brains behind the beast, we’ve been to enough of their parties! We managed to get them for a chat about all things LWE!
The last few years you guys have been mad busy hosting events constantly. LWE HQ must be all systems go! Hope you all get a chance to let your hair down?
Yes actually! We're off to Oasis Festival in Marrakesh for a bit of a family holiday with our full-time staff. We'll be doing a Junction 2 stage there, so it will be a chance for us to dance for once, as opposed to running around at the show.
Nice enjoy that late summer sun!! What would you say is the main ethos of LWE and how does this carry over to the events you host?
We always try to do things properly and make sure people are looked after. We're passionate about making the experience as best as possible for our customers, and always want their feedback on what they liked and what they think we can improve on. Likewise we always want to make sure the artists have an unforgettable experience playing one of our shows, and they really enjoy themselves. We're constantly trying to improve and take things to the next level, and are pretty obsessive in doing so, which means we work hard to achieve the best possible results.
What events did you guys get down to before establishing LWE?
Alice was running Slinky events at The Opera House in Bournemouth and worked freelance for Bestival. Will was working in venues up north in Nottingham, before he worked for Matter and fabric. Paul has been running parties for a long time in London, and was a regular promoter at Turnmills, so has seen many trends. Collectively our early experiences led us to the forming of LWE, and we've each brought something different to the company in terms of our skills and knowledge.
That collective knowledge has made LWE a leading promoter in London. What makes this city and it’s spaces so special? Are there any areas or locations that you particularly like or spaces you’ve got your eye on at the moment?
We're always on the hunt for the next space, and it's a bit of an obsession in finding the next project. London is great because there is so much going on musically, from the DIY parties for a few 100 people, to the large scale events like ours; there is something to cater for everyone’s tastes. If you look at what’s going on each Friday and Saturday night there is such a wide variety of electronic music events to go to - No matter what you like there's probably some party, somewhere made for you.
What do you look for in spaces that you may be considering to host events in?
Somewhere where you can make lots of noise, one of the biggest issues we face is the proximity of potential locations to businesses or residential property. This means some spaces might look amazing, and have a warehouse feel that we're known for, but they might not be feasible if there too close to where people live or work. We generally look for something with striking features or large open spaces, or ideally both. Sometimes the less it looks like a 'club' the better, and the best places we have worked in were never designed for the purpose LWE used them for! Archways, car parks, old factories, warehouses, old shopping centres are just a few places we have used in the past. We're pretty sure the people that built them would have never of imagined thousands of people dancing in these places years later, but that's part of the beauty of it.
LWE has maintains strong relationships with many huge brands in the electronic music community, though one stands out for us - Drumcode and Adam Beyer. Can you tell us what it is about Beyer and his label that stands out for you?
We've worked with Adam and Jeremy from Drumcode for a number of years now, and it started of at Great Suffolk Street warehouse, and we're just about to mark the 5th edition of Drumcode Halloween at Tobacco Dock. Adam is also a partner in Junction 2 festival so it's been great to be able to grow from 2000 capacity warehouse parties to Tobacco Dock, and now the festival. Drumcode is a great label to run parties with, as it's rooted in underground music, but is accessible to a more mainstream audience. This means the lineups we book have been varied over the years, and have showcased pretty much every nuance of the techno genre going! Also Drumcode fans properly love drumcode, the flags, merchandise and even tattoos are just one of the things you'd see at Drumcode Halloween, not to mention the amazing efforts that people go to with fancy dress.
Why do you think the London crowd are so into Drumcode and Adam Beyer?
Adam is huge in Europe and the UK, and our crowd is very cosmopolitan at shows with lots of fans from around Europe. Also big day time techno events are now huge in the UK, and it's something that we've grown with Drumcode.
You were behind launching the most exciting venue to hit London in a long time, Printworks. What was going through your heads when you first discovered the space?
When you walk into Printworks it's hard not to be impressed, the building looks like something out of Star Wars, Bladerunner or something from some sort of post apocalyptic sci-fi movie. Our office was based there for about 1 year and we were always noticing new features of the building on a day to day basic. It's got a lot of character, and also it's soundproofed which was also very useful!
LWE has achieved so much and given London’s nightlife and serious boost, are there other goals that LWE are aiming for?
We keep on wanting to push the boundaries in our approach to putting on events. Whether it's unusual locations, forward thinking line-ups, breaking new up and coming DJs, or exploring new production techniques we're really passionate about making the events look and good and sounds as good as they can be. Aside from that part, we'd also class ourselves as event producers that are conscious about the world and environment we live in. We think it's really important that people from any background can come to our events and enjoy themselves without any harassment, and in an environment that's safe. We're also passionate about the climate and trying to influence others in ways that we can all be more caring for the natural environment. We're going to be working on the two last points, considerably over the next few years and will be bringing in a few incentives we think could set a benchmark for other events.
What has been LWE’s proudest achievement over these last few years?
Junction 2 growing over the last few years has been great.
What makes a good party a sick party in five words or less?
Sound, crowd, space, artists and happiness!
Warehouse or Club? Warehouse.
Day or Night? Daytime.
Outdoor Stage or Tent? Not sure.
90s Music or Present-day Music? Present - there’s a lot of 90s out there these days anyway, we'll take the best of both!
Juntion2 Mainstage or Tobacco Docks’ Car Park? Don't make us choose!
East London or West London? East.
House or Techno? Half of the office would say house, the other half techno.
LWE have a host of huge parties upcoming including Cuttin' Headz on October 6th and the infamous Drumcode Halloween show down on October 27th. For full listings and tickets head to the LWE site.
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