The Neukölln station shaking up internet radio with a line-up of independent music and topical talk.
In an era of endless playlists precisely matched to your music taste, it’s tempting to think that radio is dead. But the opposite is true: webcasting is booming and Berlin is leading the charge with Refuge Worldwide, the vibrant Neukölln-based internet station that launched in January 2021.
Broadcasting live Tuesday to Friday out of a studio on Weserstraße is a genre-packed program from some 140 resident artists plus regular guest slots including big DJ names like Hunee and Prosumer. Refuge has deep roots in Berlin’s music scene: the project was started back in 2015 by Glasgow-born George Patrick as a series of solidarity parties organized in local clubs in response to the refugee crisis. The initiative morphed into a radio station which is keen to remain hyper-local, with around 90 percent of the resident DJs based in Berlin.
The program is diverse, covering genres like independent jazz and hip-hop, electronic, disco, soul and funk. There’s talk too, with a monthly show from Black Brown Berlin hosted by a line-up of women artists who spin R&B and soul in between illuminating chats on life, business and politics. If you want to see where all the magic happens, the studio and community space is open from noon to midnight with a well-stocked bar, Oona. It was named after a neighbor's eight-year-old child who frequently visits the space, much to the delight of the regulars.
Clear shapes, flowing spaces and straightforward elegance – that's the legacy architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe is known for worldwide. He has left behind more than 40 buildings in Berlin alone, and the last one he built before emigrating to the United States is located in Alt-Hohenschönhausen, on the idyllic shores of the small Obersee lake. Created in the early 1930s as a villa for the print shop owner Karl Lemke, today the Mies van der Rohe Haus is not only an architectural monument but also an exhibition space for contemporary art.