We’re All Mad Here: “Down The Rabbit Hole” Residency with Butch & friends @ Watergate, Berlin


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Tuesday in Berlin, by no means the highlight of any Berliner’s week. Tuesday in Berlin is the equivalent of Monday elsewhere because everyone knows Sunday is the best night of the week…

On Tuesday the come down is still strong and it’s not until, at the very least, Wednesday or, more practically, Thursday when one begins feeling normal, cheery, and ready for another dose of weekend. I spent each Tuesday evening this August at Barbie Deinhoffs for Tutu Tuesday followed by a short hop and a skip over to Watergate for Butch’s summer residence titled, “Down the Rabbit Hole.” Over the course of a month Butch invited Nastia, Skream, Davide Squillace, and Joseph Capriati to the decks.

After unfortunately missing the first night with Nastia due to the aforementioned Monday/Tuesday Berlin blues, I made it to the second (and all the rest) party of the residency ready for Joseph Capriati but was disappointed to find out that Capriati was sick and Butch was going to play an all night set instead. No one seemed to mind much though and the party went on in full force. I was pleasantly surprised by Butch’s set and he kept the party going until sunrise with a mix featuring stripped down minimal and tropical sounds. I spent the night between the outside patio and the dance floor grooving to some nice tunes whilst fending ravenous tourists away from my girlfriend.

All jokes aside, Butch played a nice set and took Watergate on a nice trip that, to me, resembled a sly fox noticeably speeding away from the scene of a bank robbery – don’t ask me why that image, I’m just here talking about a sound…

A psychedelic, projection mapped Alice holding a rabbit skull looked down on the party and the dancers let loose in usual Watergate fashion. The highlight of each night was sunrise, when the dance floor cleared out a little and the leftover freaks had enough room to let go, the respective DJ, wether that be Skream, Squillace, Butch, or Capriati, always pushing the party forward with heavy bass, funky melodies, sexy percussion, and soulful breaks. To be honest, none of the parties really stood out from one another but together they comprised a tastefully created summer residency and one of the better Tuesday night parties in Berlin this August. I was given the opportunity to ask Butch a few questions regarding Down the Rabbit Hole and the future.

What was the idea behind the residency and why’d you name it Down the Rabbit Hole?

The guys at Watergate and I noticed that we both share a love for going deep and getting dirty. Down the Rabbit Hole is all about exploring and allowing the music and the night to take you places you didn’t know existed. Every time I’m there I feel like Alice in Wonderland, so that just had to be the name.

How did you go about curating the lineups?

I see who I can get for next to nothing, charge Watergate a lot of money for them and then keep 90% of it. Haha, no, seriously, it has a lot to do with finding like-minded DJs, who want to push the boundaries of possibility. That’s why there is usually only one other DJ per night and no fixed playtimes, because if you’re stuck in those set structures it gets difficult to let the flow take you where it wants to take you.

What’s in store for you in the next 12 months?

Ricardo and I have made a new ButRic EP, I’ll be going on a South American tour with Solomun, there’s a remix for Basement Jaxx coming, as well as an EP for Cocoon Rec, so, you know, I won’t let you go hungry, there’ll be enough hot music coming to spin on your plates.

What goes into planning a residency like this and what have you gained from the experience? What will you do differently next time?

There wasn’t too much planning involved, as I already knew the people at Watergate and have a great relationship with them. Through Down The Rabbit Hole I, and I think also the Berlin music scene, have gained a new space to delve into free creative expression and you know what? I wouldn’t change a single thing about it.