I have only been to Shoreditch’s Plastic People a handful of times, but from the very beginning I could feel the magic of the place. Many legendary parties took place there, many being synonymous with the rise of a new kind of music. Co-op, FWD, Nonsense, the regular nights by Four Tet, Theo Parrish or Floating Points, even the CDR listening events will be remembered by many, and not only by Londoners. The Last Dance, literally, took place last weekend as the club closes its doors forever. What you can hear above is the 5 hours of music played during that night.
“Although Shoreditch has now become apocalyptic after 1am, Plastic People never changed. We all maintained that it’s a safe haven away from it all. The people coming down to the nights were so nice, and became regulars; suddenly it became a room full of 200 friends. You knew their dance moves, you knew the guy who screams when you played a certain track. It didn’t feel like randoms off the street.”
What you shouldn’t miss is the article the quote is taken from, in which founder Ade Fakile and resident Floating Points share their memories of the club. And there’s even more memories on Twitter under the #plasticpeople hashtag.
By now you should have heard about London’s Plastic People facing a possible shut-down. The fine folks at Spine TV completed the first part of their documentary on the club and its important role in the worldwide scene of underground music.
I briefly mentioned the situation London’s Plastic People, one of the most forward thinking clubs in the world, is currently facing. To make it short, the club’s future is currently at stake and the managers have to appeal to the police to keep their license (check this PDF). You don’t have to have attended a party at Plastics to understand the impact a shutdown would have, a look at their programme reads like the who-is-who of underground music. It has been the home to CDR, a night for producers to present their work and share their knowledge. DJs with a regular night include Theo Parrish and Four Tet, the latter even dedicated a Mix CD to the club. FWD or Co-Op are (or were) institutions that promoted their respective sound to an audience all around the world.
Benny Blanco, whose own Nonsense night is resident at Plastics, set up a group on Facebook where you can show your support for Plastic People. Now, a Facebook group alone will not change the situation. But what it can do is raising the awareness and since this weekend it found more than 10,000 supporters. The group is also the platform to keep you updated on the development and once there is a way to actively support the club, you will read it there first!
As I don’t live in London, I only went to Plastics three times in my life. I instantly fell in love with the intimate atmosphere, I met nice people the second I first entered and of course the soundsystems blew me away. There are a lot of people out there who can tell you more stories than I can. You could start by reading some one-liners on Twitter or dive in a little deeper by reading these posts on Shook and The Arts Desk. If you want to help, start by reading the official statement from Plastic People, join the Facebook group, then -most importantly- educate yourself on taking action.
Lastly, I have a little something for you. This 3-hours-set was recorded at the Co-Op Easter Spesh at Plastics back in 2005, featuring DJs such as Domu, IG Culture, J Da Flex and Benji B.
February 26, 2010 You can now sign a petition here. Do it!