So, getting on for a year ago, Rockworld failed, and a slew of other nights sprung up to fill the void. Most of those nights died pretty quickly, and many others (some of which pre-dated Rockworld's demise) have folded too.
Now, there is no single reason all these clubs/nights failed. In most cases, it's a combination of several underlying reasons.
The first is due to how people deal with music. Most people don't actually like music as an art-form, rather they treat it as something in the background and something to dance to. These people learn to like specific songs that remind them of good times, and can hence be sold to.
The minority who like music though, really love music, and while they might like a few tracks on the same basis as the majority (typically where a person likes only one or two tracks by an artist), they otherwise tend to be fans of bands or at least albums. However, genres like we're discussing, counter-intuitively, have people who don't like music who consider themselves fans. As teenagers they find the sub-cultures attached to these genres attractive to and accepting of them, and grow to like certain popular tracks as a result*.
Thus a club night needs to cater to two diverse groups, the first who want the same narrow-selection of well-known tracks each week, and those who don't understand why you're playing such a boringly limited selection each week. You see, to the latter, if, say, Iron Maiden are popular, there's no reason not to play stuff like Out of the Silent Planet, Twilight Zone or The Black Bart Blues. They miss the former group not being familiar with this stuff. The former though aren't fans of Iron Maiden, the band isn't as popular as certain of their tracks. Each group cannot understand the other fully, the best we can hope for is to learn to understand the difference.
Alas, with alternative music, neither group usually has the numbers to make a regular night successful on their own.
The second problem is in how people access music. Go back fifteen years, and the record companies and mass-media still acted as gate-keepers to music. Resultantly, we had a (comparatively) narrow range of very popular acts. As the record companies have effectively abandoned alternative music over the last fifteen years though, and as the internet has taken their place, there are no gate-keepers. Any band can become well-known, and if you like a specific sub-genre, you can find bands easily. This leads to a (comparatively) wide range of fairly popular bands.
The result for clubs is that there is far less of a "mainstream" for most of the alternative genres. This means that it's harder to have dance-floor fillers, harder to find tracks with broad popularity amongst your customer base, and thus harder to play the kinds of music your clientèle enjoy. This is also why nights which are both occasional and specialist do so well.
As I mentioned previously
, there are plenty of punters to be had, the clubs just haven't been delivering what people want, largely due to a lack of consensus amongst the customers as to what that is. Further, while the puk and goth scenes still seems to be in a determinant slow decline due to a lack of fresh blood**, occasional specialist nights still draw a crowd (just look how many goths travel significant distance to attend the Wendy House over in Leeds).
So, these two problems in consort make it very difficult for DJs to play to any given crowd successfully. Looking at rockworld it had four fairly big rooms. What it needed though was five or six smaller rooms to account for the ever diverging tastes.that's just to continue to support it's traditional crowd, not to start catering to the emos, nu-metallers, gothlings, new-wave-pop-rockers (or indie-rockers as they're perversely known), etc, etc.
Further to all this is a problem introduced with the move to twenty-four-hour licensing. Previously, people who wanted to continue boozing past eleven would be forced to accompany their mates to the club. This means that those wanting to booze and those wanting to dance would stay together.
Now however, the boozers can stay boozing on the cheap, which leaves the dancers the choice of abandoning their mates or abandoning what they want to do.
Further, the clubs are now in semi-direct competition with the bars for the business of these boozers, but are still pricing themselves as if they where not. Don't get me wrong that a small mark-up in a club is acceptable, but the large difference caused by the old pricing structure is detrimental.
*Incidentally, when these people join the work force and stop needing the sub-culture, their love of "our" music falls by the way-side, leading to the mistaken belief that music is for teenagers.
**I mentioned here
how the scenes in Manchester are composed mostly of Students, the rock societies these days have only a very tiny number of goths/punks these days. The reduced number of younger goths/punks leads to fewer younger kids being exposed to the music in a vicious cycle, causing those genres to "grey".