We speak to head honcho Wayne Shires ahead of Brut’s birthday bash!
Brut touches down at Electric Brixton!
Hey Wayne! So Brüt’s celebrating their second birthday at Electric Brixton, formerly THE FRIDGE!
Yeah! The Fridge is a brilliant space, so I’m really excited. And we haven’t done a big Brüt since last November, when we moved into our new weekly home Bloc South – which obviously won’t be open on the night that we’re at The Fridge! The Electric, I mean! I’ll stop saying The Fridge. The Electric. You know what I mean.
So what should people expect then?
We’re doing a massive party, with more DJs than we’ve ever had! All our residents are there. And we’ll be having a stage show as well – a dance troupe called Sweat! Which is a load of bears, choreographed by a friend of mine called Marcus. And some of them have featured in the MoneySupermarket ad! So they’ll be doing some numbers on stage. Stage entertainment is something we’ve never done at Brüt before, and the venue’s brilliant, so we’ve got some really good visuals and production going in. We’ve got some cool projections that we’re gonna show as well, a retrospective of the last two years.
What made you choose The Electric?
Well, we’re doing gay pride there as well, and we’re collaborating with another bear brand for that, but I can’t say who. We had two really good years at The Steelyard, but we’d done our time there. We did one event at The Scala, and they wanted us back, but when I heard there were some dates available at The Electric, I was much more on board, with its location south of the river and stuff. And also just the number of times that I’ve rolled around in that place in the past. It has fond memories.
Do you think it’s gonna be surreal for people being back in a venue that they remember as The Fridge?
Yeah, we’ve been getting messages from people saying ‘oh my god I met my husband there 18 years ago!’ which is quite cool. We do have a slightly older crowd who go to Brut, so a lot of them will remember Love Muscle. People are looking forward to that nostalgia I think. And the people who run it are really nice, and it’s got a great security team and stuff.
That can make such a difference can’t it.
Definitely! It’s the same security we’ve got at Bloc South. So you’ll see some familiar faces. And it’s important to have good security, we take great stock in how people are treated – when they’re spending their hard-earned money with us, they need to be looked after.
So did you envisage Brüt being so successful as a brand?
I didn’t really know! Originally I just thought I’d try filling a gap in the market, and then all the stars aligned. I’ve been blown away by the success, not only in London but internationally as well – we do Brut every Friday in the Canary Islands! And we’re doing World Pride in Madrid. We’ve done all over the place. And we’ve started working with Berlin promoters too.
So where did the concept of Brut originally come from?
Well, I was always in love with Brut, as in the aftershave. I worked with a graphics guy called Ben, and when I told him the name he came up with the logo. We had the logo and we had the graphics, and we knew we wanted to not do colour – that’s why our pictures are always in black and white. It makes us stand out more. Also, everyone looks good in black and white, right? So we had the graphics, DJs and concept all lined up long before we had a venue. And it was just a case of getting the right venue. The Steelyard was great for a year and a half, and now we have a brilliant weekly home at Bloc South.
So what can people expect from this party then?
They’re going to get a big birthday Brut celebration, with lots of amazing DJs, a bit of a stage show, and a really nice party atmosphere.
Amazing! Thanks Wayne!
The Big Brut Birthday is on Saturday 20th May at Electric Brixton, Town Hall Parade, SW2 1RJ. 10pm – 6am. £10 wristbands available at The Kings Arms and Comptons, and tickets available at brutlondon.com