DIY culture is one of the most accepting and tolerant communities I have ever come across not only in the music industry but globally. I spent more than a few sweaty nights in the dark depths of 285 Kent as a fan and friend to many bands while living in Williamsburg, Brooklyn in the Summer of 2010. Whether I was moshing it out in the pit to my punk partners in crime, The Mess Around, or feeling the love from phenomenal performers like Dan Deacon, 285 Kent was always a sanctuary for music nerds, ravers, artists, and diehard DIYers. Now, four years later, as a L.A. promoter working tirelessy to bring a DIY company into a new era of the music industry, I’m sad to see such an institution suffocated by development.
Today Pitchfork TV released RIP 285 Kent: A Documentary celebrating the long history of this legendary venue by highlighting the fans, employees, owners, and artists who were the real fabric of 285. Choosing to leave on their own terms rather than be forced out, the collective closed their doors due to encroaching housing development and gentrification. An inspiring story of the trials and tribulations of hosting a DIY space, the documentary hits home for anyone who has endured the struggles involved with running a start-up. Watch these iconoclasts of DIY send off their infamous venue with a bittersweet goodbye.