Berlin is one of the best clubbing cities in the world, yet to limit it as just an electronic music destination would be a gross misinterpretation of the city’s music scene.

The European metropolis is a cultural cluster that encompasses all of the arts. Culture is Berlin’s lifeblood, literally. Without any real industrial base the city relies on the arts to keep its tourism and financial wheels turning.

It’s because of this reality that the city invests in the arts to ensure that Berlin remains as one of the continent’s most prominent destinations.

Six orchestras, multiple music and arts festivals, including two contemporary music events within a month of each other maintains this thriving urban area.

Its popularity as a music destination for both fans and artists alike is indisputable. It’s estimated that the city has a yearly total of 135 million day-visitors and besides the extravagant arts scene, musicians are drawn to Berlin for its low rent and cheap cost of living. Berlin’s ability to allure musicians worldwide is evidenced by its historical list of big names recording some incredibly influential albums within the area.

Who could forget such names as Kurt Weil and Bertolt Brecht? Or the likes of Nick Cave, Lou Reed, and U2? Who have all taken inspiration in dwelling there to craft their music.

Then there’s the fruitful three years in which David Bowie and Iggy Pop lived in a flat together. The former recorded what has been nicknamed as the ‘Berlin Trilogy’ of albums in 1977’s Low and “Heroes”, plus 1979’s The Lodger. 

Bowie recorded at the famous Hansa studios during his time in Berlin and the establishment is now a must-see attraction for music fans. So if Bowie or Iggy won’t rouse your interest in Berlin, what will?

If not the remnants of the wall, then surely Berlin’s reputation as a party town is what will spike the interest of most travellers.

The city’s nightlife became Germany’s most revered after the Berlin Wall fell in 1989, with diverse clubs attracting young people from Eastern and Central Europe throughout the 90s.

With around 300 hundred clubs citywide, establishments come as varied as a swimming pool or an old Western-style house. There are jazz and swing clubs in operation that have been around since the 20s. A fact which not only illustrates the music scene’s versatility, but also it’s rich history.

Given its financial state, it was once known as the ‘poor but sexy’ city, but whatever its woes once were, since the fall of the wall, Berlin has been a cultural mecca for artists and music fans regardless of their monetary fortunes.

Head To Berlin Festival For Three Awesome Days Of Music

2014 marked a decade since this event first took place. Held over three days in September and featuring Darkside, Warpaint, Jessie Ware, Bombay Bicycle Club and Mykki Blanco. The Berlin Festival is held in the unused Tempelhof Airport, while ticket holders are also afforded free entry into over 30 clubs around the city.

Head To Watergate, A Nighclub with Riverside Views

Falckensteinstrasse 49, Kreuzberg,

This split level location provides not only techno and house music for punters but incredible river side views, just in case you wanted to appreciate the city amidst a big night. Downstairs in what is appropriately titled the ‘Waterfloor’ up and coming DJs get their turn, while upstairs features some of the city’s and world’s best talent.

Buy German Techno At Hardwax

Paul-Lincke-Ufer 44a

Just like Berlin itself, this store is steeped in music history. Hardwax grew to prominence alongside the electronic scene that developed in the late 80s. The store has forever since been the best place in Berlin to buy German techno records. The world-renowned establishment is often the only store you can acquire limited pressings of the best electronic music from around the world.

Experience On Of The City’s Biggest Music Events In Berlin Music Week

20,000 fans from all over the world gather in the district of Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg over five days in September. The festival attracts local and international acts to play in several concert venues and clubs. The event aims to showcase the city’s diverse music culture and promote its presence in the international music scene. Gig showcases, conferences, panels, seminars, and parties are also provided for music fans and industry types looking to soak up the best Berlin’s music scene has to offer.

Experience One Of The City’s Best Nighclubs In Berghain

Am Wriezener Bahnhof, Friedrichshain

Converted into one of the city’s best nightclubs from a power plant, this world-renowned venue is a techno lover’s haven. Unlike no other club you’ll find anywhere else in the world, Berghain provides the electronic music experience for the craziest partygoers in town. The Panorama bar upstairs sticks mainly to house music, while the large main room has minimal techno blasting through the sound system. Dubstep and experimental themed nights are also regularly held.

Buy Punk And Hardcore LPs At Vopo Records

Danziger Straße 31

Punk and hardcore fans are urged to head to this store as it stocks a large range of alternative music. Open Monday through to Saturday, a large selection of concert tickets, t-shirts, and memorabilia are also for sale. CD, DVD, and record accessories are also on display throughout, but it chiefly remains one of the last stores in Berlin to specialise in the once thriving punk and hardcore scene.

Witness A Huge Berlin-style Party At Lido

Cuvrystr. 7

Once a movie theatre, this establishment is now a concert hall for live music fans. With acts playing indie rock, metal, punk, and even dubstep tunes here, Lido attracts a diverse crowd. Open from Tuesday through to Sundays this venue also hosts huge parties with punters soaking up the nostalgic atmosphere. The old wallpaper, combined with dozens of colours and offbeat furniture makes it a unique live music venue.

Soak Up The City’s Electronic Scene At BerMuDa – Berlin Music Days 

Over four days and nights this festival celebrates the electronic music culture that dominates Berlin’s music scene. Since 2009 this annual event has been held between late October and early November. Started by organisers with the aim of strengthening and protecting the city’s club culture, it now hosts parties, showcases, workshops, exhibitions and panels are held all over Berlin as DJs and lovers of electronic music descend upon the European city.

Shop Up For Vinyl At Oye Records

Oderberger Straße 4

With three rooms stacked with records for fans of multiple types of music, this is one of the city’s best record establishments. While predominantly a go-to for house and disco LPs, there’s also hip-hop and jazz to be found here too, as well as regularly hosting gigs.

Catch Up and Coming Local Acts At Kato

U-Bhf. Schlesisches Tor

What was previously a department store is now an indie and alternative rock venue for the hipster youth (or anyone sporting a skinny enough pair of faded jeans). With live music that features anything from noise pop to mashups or even ska, Kato encompasses a broad range of left-field music. The drinks come cheap and be sure to hit up Kato on Tuesdays or Thursdays – their biggest nights.

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