When I come to a new city I usually watch a band play and go to a football game. The reason is simple: I like the atmosphere at gigs and it is easy to get to know local people who will tell you many different stories about their city: the music scene, neighborhoods that have changed, what the mayor is doing right or wrong, bars you might like, people you should meet. Going to a local football game is quite the same: you get to see a neighborhood you often would not go to otherwise, you see many different people at one place, you get a feeling of the fans chanting and shouting, you enjoy some local beer and just watch what is going on.
Going to a gig and watching a football game have been many times my best starting point for a new city. The rest often followed from there. I have learned more about Prague by taking the bus to Strahov and watching a band play at Klub 007 than by crossing the Charles Bridge (it is a very nice bridge though). To watch a game by Velez footbal club has told me way more about the city of Mostar than I could have learned from any tour guide.
Sarajevo, spring 2017
This is what Kiss the Bottle is about. It is about cities and their subcultures. It is about people who have a need to express and communicate their inner feelings and passions. Whose work and life is strongly connected to the city they live in. But Kiss the Bottle is also about social change. The people I met on my journeys are not just communicating their ideas, needs and visions for themselves. They have a strong desire to connect and are eager to move forward and make change happen – be it for themselves, their friends, their community or their city. It is a constant conversation about the lives we live – as individuals and in relationship to others.
To me, subcultures are the most exciting places to find these kind of conversations and the people involved. Music, literature, football grounds, galleries, art houses, theaters, cafés, bars or skateboard spots. These are the places where people express themselves, communicate and connect. These are the places that shape and change neighborhoods and cities.
Kiss the Bottle is my channel to explore these subcultures and to have a conversation with the people who shape them.
My name is Stephan. I am a journalist and writer from Vienna, Austria. I love Jawbreaker.
Thank you to Erich Steiner (comealive), Peter Brüenner (instinkt.tv), Sarah Brugner and Michael Luger (They Shoot Music), Tobias Zotter (Great) and Eva Mundos for helping me with cinematography, photography, editing and design!