Neonlights steeped in history
To the south of the charming inner-city Carlsplatz and after taking a few steps down the Hohe Strasse, you’ll find building no. 19. The hidden inner courtyard is definitely worth a visit. Here, you’ll find “Pure Freude”, the most enchanting courtyard café in the city. As a patisserie, it offers excellent coffee as well as cakes and delicious baked goods, which look like small pop art creations. If you take a closer look, you’ll see that the décor consists of loosely distributed neon tubes, particularly on the café ceiling. They are a tribute by the owner, Olga Lina Knoebel, to her mother Carmen. In 1979, Carmen opened the well-known record store Pure Freude in the north-east of the inner city after leaving her role as tenant, manager and central figure in the Ratinger Hof. There, in the Hof, she had experienced all the influential bands, from the raw beginnings of Male and Charley’s Girls to the band that preceded the ten Hosen, ZK, to Fehlfarben and Der Plan. For that reason, her record store became a meeting point for discussions and the exchange of ideas in the Düsseldorf punk and New Wave scene. Based on her experience, she developed her label Pure Freude, which she ran together with Harry Rag, making it the most important platform for the early releases from the scene. Mittagspause, S.Y.P.H. and die Lemminge all released their singles and albums on this label. Pure Freude was succeeded by Hitsville Records, a cosy record store that still exists today.
Hohe Str. 19 / Derendorfer Straße, 40213 Düsseldorf