When underground Brooklyn music venue Death By Audio shuttered in November 2014, its demise signaled the end of an era for Williamsburg’s music scene. The space had played an instrumental role in launching bands like A Place to Bury Strangers and Dirty on Purpose and left a hole that may never be filled. Fortunately, DBA cofounder Matthew Conboy had the good sense to film just about everything that happened between news of the warehouse space’s closing and the night of its raucous last gasp of life. Rolling Stone has an exclusive look at the trailer for the documentary cut together from the footage.
Premiering at SXSW in March, Goodnight Brooklyn – The Story of Death By Audio captures that brief moment in time when Williamsburg was suspended between a history of gentrification and a future of corporation. Synonymous with the hipsters who had made it their home, the Brooklyn neighborhood had shaken off the ashes of 9/11 by transforming itself into a DIY utopia where the world’s most exciting young musicians could get together and sculpt the sound of their generation.
Founded in 2002 as a workspace for artists and an effects pedal factory for acts both esoteric (Lightning Bolt) and enormous (U2), Death By Audio mutated into a performance venue in 2007 and immediately became a haven for emerging acts chasing their own sound. “We didn’t belong in New York City,” Future Islands frontman Samuel T. Herring says in the trailer, “but we immediately felt like ‘these people are like us!'”
Featuring blistering concert footage, Goodnight Brooklyn also boasts interviews with indie luminaries like Ty Segall and TV on the Radio’s Kyp Malone. Conboy’s chronicle promises to be more than just a document of a space, but also a broader requiem for an entire scene.
Goodnight Brooklyn – The Story of Death By Audio bows at SXSW on March 14th.