In a series built in collaboration with gin imprint Bulldog to get a better understanding of the Belgian oh-so-special nightlife, we met six of the country’s proeminent figures – Dour’s Mathieu Fonsny, Horst’s Jochem Daelman, Deep in House’s Tom Raoul, Hush Hush’s Hush Hefner, Crevette Records’ Pim Thomas and Studio Brussel’s Charlotte de Witte . Now that we know a little more about it, it’s time to dig into Belgium’s urban hot-spots.
On weekdays, Pim Thomas runs his record label and store, Crevette Records, a haven for music lovers that combines unmissable releases and a vinyl selection that would impress any collector. Then, come weekends he DJs under his alias Alfred Anders, if not hosting his budding Crevette parties. We caught up with Pim to discuss his go-to-spots in Brussels, from the perfect night out in Kumiko to a day of culture at BOZAR.
All visuals by Thomas Ost (c).
I’m currently based in Wemmel, on the outskirts of Brussels; and work on the Rue Blaes (1000) high street in the Marolles / Marollen neighbourhood. I’m in the midst of searching for an apartment within the city limits – which is taking its time, but I’m patient. Brussels is a vibrant city with plenty of things happening, and where the mix of different cultures and people create some great combinations. Most days I don’t really have time for breakfast, so I’ll just pick up a coffee to go from Café Capital (Rue du Midi 45 Zuidstraat, 1000). Before opening the shop, I usually have a walk to Vossenplein (1006), on the search for everything and nothing. I ironically find the somewhat busy and chaotic atmosphere there as very therapeutic. When it comes to dining though, eating out needs to be an intimate affair – I prefer small and cosy restaurants, with a great music selection and not too much light. Top picks are Le Selecto (Rue de Flandre 95-97 Vlaamsesteenweg, 1000), La Fin de Siècle (Avenue de l’Armée 3 Legerlaan, 1040), or CHAFF (Place du Jeu de Balle 21-22 Vossenplein, 1000). And though I do have old habits, I’m also always on the hunt for something new. For drinks out, I usually head to Kumiko (Rue d’Alost 7 Aalststraat, 1000) – especially after closing up my shop. Some of my friends organise events and work there, and their musical program is also always on point. Clothes wise, I don’t really buy a lot of threads, asides from the occasional music label merch. For the rest, I do a fair amount of online shopping, since I like to keep it as effortless as possible. I prefer to spend my time looking for good music rather than beautiful clothes! And of course, most clothing stores have the same opening hours as us, so shopping in person is pretty rare. For music, I’m a big fan of Dust Dealers (22 Rue Vanderschrickstraat, 1060)– they have a great jazz, soul and afro selection, and the record store is right around the corner. And it goes without saying that I’m bang in the middle of one of Brussels’ finest design neighbourhoods. I can just walk through and around the Rue Blaes high-street and Vossenplein, and enjoy all there is in terms of thrift shopping and flea-markets. Once my workday is over, I’ll head to Palace of Justice (1000) on Place Poelaert, to enjoy the fantastic panoramic views over north Brussels. Always sure to relax me after a busy day. In the evenings, I tend to attend concerts hosted by Ancienne Belgique (110 Boulevard Anspachlaan, 1000), Botanique (Rue Royale 236 Koningsstraat, 1210) or Beursschouwburg. I’m not a fan of large venues, leaning more towards small and cosy halls. It’s pretty easy to discover new talents in this city – something which Plein Sud (1190) is doing with much success at Kumiko. Otherwise, if ever I find the time, I’ll head to BOZAR (23 Rue Ravensteinstraat, 1000) or Wiels (354 Avenue Van Volxemlaan, 1190) to check out their exhibitions.crevetterecords.be