I remember a time before Exit. I actually remember the club night it replaced: it was called Headrush, and it was a night of great music, but few people. That all changed when Exit came along, and with its BFFs Beats & Bass and Thick as Thieves, transformed the music scene in Exeter. No longer did people have to choose between Cheesy Tuesdays or staying in. A third option appeared, and we were given the opportunity to dance to exciting house music played by fun, talented DJs.
While Exit no longer takes place on a Tuesday, it is still very much alive, and remains one of Exeter’s most vibrant nights out. The 2013/14 team is headed by Monika Patel and George Cunliffe, who have answered our questions to give us an insight into what Exit 2.0 is all about.
What is Exit and how is it different from the other nights in Exeter?
George: For anyone who hasn’t come across it, Exit is a student-run house night at The Cellar Door. We see ourselves as an easy-going alternative to the majority of Exeter club nights. The Cellar Door has always had a bit of a reputation for being “edgy”, but come down to Exit and we might just change your mind – we’re just here to have a good time. Our doors are open to both dedicated house heads and anyone who is sick of the same club nights everywhere else in the city. Give it a chance and you might just love it!
Monika: Also, compared to other house nights in Exeter, we just try to be a little cheesy and fun. We give away stickers, sweets and – on special occasions – cake! We just want to give it that party vibe and make sure everyone enjoys themselves.
You’re second generation Exiters. How have things changed from last year?
M: The biggest change has been our move to one Friday a month from alternating Tuesdays. But we think that keeps it special as we have more time to focus on each night. We also have a new set of residents, of course. Takao, Albin and Kingtrix are all exclusive to Exit. Although relatively new to the scene, they’re talented guys and over the past few months they’ve built a following that’s constantly growing.
What are the challenges of running a night?
G: One of the biggest challenges is probably booking headliners. We spend a lot of time trying to find a balance between bringing in artists people recognise and taking advantage of up-and-coming talent before they blow up. We managed to catch one of our more recent headliners, Wilfred Giroux, at a pretty key point in his career – in between us booking him and the event, his following (and his booking fee) grew by 500%!
M: There’s a lot that happens on the night too. George and I are constantly running around to make sure everything goes smoothly. It can get hectic, but it’s all worth it to make sure everyone has a good time.
Who would be your dream line up for an Exit?
G: Bondax (who are headlining Hijacked!) and Disclosure.
M: Ha! Yeah, I totally agree – if money was no object, then that’d would be ideal! We’ve both been fans of Bondax for a while now and I think it’s great that they’re finally getting recognition at such a young age – and they’re great producers! Same goes for Disclosure; they just keep producing incredible dance music with a universal appeal.
Which tracks can’t you stop listening to at the minute?
G: Adryiano – On My Side
M: Late Night Tuff Guy – Glow
Any Exeter based DJs we should watch out for?
M: I reckon you should pay attention to all the new residents that Thieves have next year (NorthSouth, Tom Deuchars etc.) because I’ve seen them play sets at various nights and they always get me moving!
G: Josh Toogood has always been one of our favourites on the Exeter circuit too.
Do we have anything special in store for the next Exit?
G: We’re incredibly excited to have Hackman headlining our 2nd birthday this Friday! Also, we’ve got Exit co-founder Simon Whitehead (a.k.a. Xhosah/5imba) coming down for a set.
M: And rumour has it Exit’s very own Brad Vanstone will be making an appearance too… It’s set to be a big night!
You can catch Exit tomorrow night down at The Cellar Door and you can get your tickets here.