In the battle for the Williamsburg waterfront, last year’s clear loser were the multiple DIY venues that used to operate along a stretch of Kent Avenue near South 1st Street. Glasslands, 285 Kent, and Death by Audio all shuttered, much to the dismay of music fans. During the battle, many fingers were pointed at Vice, a company that celebrated the DIY scene and then, depending on who’s telling the story, basically evicted them for office space. (During the last night at Death by Audio, revelers tore up copies of Vice as they danced.)
The tension between the music community and Vice is more than just grumbling: This afternoon, musical collective Talibam! is planning a loud public protest outside Vice’s Williamsburg office space in an attempt to “levitate Vice Media’s office, personnel and the building itself into the East River.”
This will be coordinated with a similar protest in LA, which attempts to dump their west coast offices into the Pacific Ocean using the power of their collective minds.
“Inspired by the FUGS levitation of the Pentagon in 1967, A diversity of Communities that has been poached, glamorized against their will, forcibly removed and appropriated responds with an action to rid negative spirits from their point of origin,” the Facebook invitation reads. The levitation is scheduled for 3:35 pm, and “rehearsal” starts at 2:34 pm.
Organizer Matt Motel explained to Brokelyn that their goal was to create “an open dialog between Vice, the directly displaced live/work communities in the Kent ave building, the long term Latino communities being displaced via the 2005 Williamsburg Rezoning and the greater New York city artistic community that Vice has cannibalized with their take over of that building.”