In case you haven’t heard of it yet, Walking Through Sound is an upcoming brand that not only focuses on putting on club nights at the lesser-known Eiger Studios, but also puts out podcasts, hosts house parties, and plans to do even more.
We spoke to co founder, Tobias Matthew, to learn more about what Walking Through Sound had to offer.
What is Walking Through Sound all about? What does the brand represent?
The idea originally was to create a brand that is simply all about the music. That may sound a bit obvious, but so often these days we see brands and club nights getting too caught up in trying to jazz everything up with things like bouncy castles and ball pits. While those are obviously great fun, and clearly appeal to a lot of people, there are so many nights like that now, and it’s so easy for the music to end up taking a back seat. We wanted to create a brand that was inherently student orientated, but focused on the more stripped back style of event that was all about losing yourself in some great music for a few hours.
Your Facebook page mentions that WTS aims to showcase larger artists to ‘local rising stars.’ Who are your newcomers to watch at the moment in the Leeds scene?
The thing about that is that there really are so many! Leeds is full of amazing, talented DJs and musicians, I’m sure practically everyone that comes here and really gets into the nightlife at least thinks about buying a pair of decks. However if I had to choose people to watch out for I’d have to pick out Unsung Collective and our pals Subtone. Both of them are a collective of three great and talented DJs who play B2B. They’re being booked everywhere at the moment and its not without deserving it. But bear in mind there are probably some Leeds based DJs on the cusp of making it big that I haven’t even heard of yet- that’s the beauty of the scene.
What made you choose Eiger Studios as the home for Walking Through Sound? Will the venue be switched up in the future?
From the start I was really focused on finding a new and exciting venue. Beaverworks, Wire, Canal Mills are all amazing, but we students go out a hell of a lot, and I know I wasn’t alone in wanting to experience some new places. Eiger was one of the places we found that was not only an awesome space, but hadn’t yet been tapped into with student club nights, so it was ideal really. We definitely plan to take the brand about the place though, and there are a few exciting things in the works for next academic year, but we have found a brilliant home in Eiger.
After your debut event was headlined by the likes of Mia Mendi and Subtone, could we have any clues to what future line-ups will look like? Does WTS commit itself to a particular genre?
I can’t really give too much away as to future headliners at the moment, but I can say we are looking at some big names for future events. However, I think we tapped into something really different in bringing Mia Mendi along, who aren’t necessarily household names, but are doing something pretty unique in running a really successful YouTube channel. For our next night I can say that the headliners stick to that kind of vibe, but perhaps take it up a notch! In terms of genre, no we definitely are not limited as a brand. What’s important to bear in mind is that WTS isn’t just a club night. We do everything from weekly podcasts, to hosting house parties and we are about to kick off a livestream project that showcases local talent in really intimate venues around Leeds and streams it on our page. These things will all experiment with a range of genres. The same goes for our night: BYPASS. However I think there is a massive lack of a proper, stripped back Techno orientated, student run night in Leeds, and this is what BYPASS was created based upon. But that doesn’t mean people should expect just deep rolling tech 24/7!
Did any other nights in Leeds really inspire you to start up Walking Through Sound? Or did you spot a gap in the market?
I wouldn’t say any specific one inspired me to, I think that there’s just so many brands that are absolutely killing it, and a lot of the big ones around the country all started here in Leeds, so I just thought why not go for it?! I do remember towards the end of first year going out and just not really hearing a lot of the kind of music I wanted, which definitely helped, but I think it’s difficult to say there’s a real gap in the market the kind that Good Life and Cirque saw a few years ago, as there’s just so many nights! For me it’s not about making it big (although obviously that would be great), we’re just doing it because it’s great fun!
What makes Leeds such a great location for events to thrive?
A combination of things really. Firstly, the students. The city is the cultural hub that it is because of the mass of students, but also because of the general attitude that being a student here seems to produce in all of us. It’s safe to say that a lot of the brands that make it big now would be nowhere without us! However I think credit has to be given to the local scene. The biggest and best nights are nearly all run by people who have lived here and been doing it for years- they’re the big guns. But the combination of the number and type of students, as well as the size and history of the city just make it such a vibrant cultural hub. I don’t think there’s anywhere better to start up a night.
Walking Through Sound next event, Bypass II comes to Leeds on 4th May, but before that you can catch them in Room 2 of Canal Mills on 24th March.