OFF Festival Katowice 2015. Photo by: OFF Festival
PHOTO BY OFF Festival

OFF Festival Katowice 2015: Twelve Angry Artists

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Author Mathias Haegglund in Music for Evlear
Published Mon. 30th of Mar 2015 URL Bookmark

From the deserts of Africa, the concert halls and basements of the world’s greatest cities, and the town of Twin Peaks: the latest additions to the OFF Festival Katowice 2015 lineup hail from all over.

Xiu Xiu Plays the Music of Twin Peaks
“The music of Twin Peaks is everything that we aspire to as musicians and is everything that we want to listen to as music fans. It is romantic, it is terrifying, it is beautiful, it is unnervingly sexual,” says Jamie Stewart, the leader of the band Xiu Xiu. Stewart has been tasked with arranging a new version of the cult classic’s soundtrack, originally composed by Angelo Badalamenti and David Lynch. The world premiere takes places this April in Brisbane at an exhibition titled “David Lynch: Between Two Worlds.” Xiu Xiu will then take the show on the road with live performances at a select few venues, including the OFF Festival! Stewart will be responsible for the singing, noisemaking, guitars and keyboards; Shayna Dunkelman will take over the vibraphone, percussions and additional keyboards, and Angela Seo will be operating the synthesizers and percussion instruments. Bob will be conducting.

The Dillinger Escape Plan
Fun fact: this New Jersey band holds the world record for the greatest number of injuries sustained on stage. It’s not that they’re fragile, it’s just that… well, you’ll see. And while they’re infamous for putting on shows that look like ballets about plane crashes, what’s actually most impressive about The Dillinger Escape Plan is that their art has pushed extreme music in a completely new direction. Their variety of mathcore is inhumanly precise, unbelievably intense and astoundingly creative: it’s no surprise they’ve received offers to tour with Nine Inch Nails and System of a Down, and Mike Patton himself asked them to join him in the studio. While we wait for their next album, the sequel to 2013’s One of Us Is the Killer, we’ll gladly let The Dillinger Escape Plan give us a beating in Katowice.

Dean Blunt
Remember the Hype Williams concert we had a few years ago? Well, we’re happy to invite Dean Blunt back to the OFF Festival, this time in a new, solo incarnation. A new name, a new chapter, but one thing hasn’t changed: this British musician continues to elude any attempts to label him, covering his tracks, lying to interviewers, spoiling melodies that sound too pretty, experimenting with sounds and mocking his fans and himself. Even the title of his latest album, Black Metal, combined with the stylistically blurry, art-pop music on the record prove that you can expect just about anything from Dean Blunt at this year’s show.

Iceage
This might be their second performance at the OFF Festival, but Iceage is not the same band it once was. Compare their furious debut album New Brigade to the 2014 release Plowing into the Field of Love, which sounds as if Mark E. Smith were hell-bent on once again making Nick Cave the 20-year-old leader of The Birthday Party with a very unhealthy lifestyle. How are these Copenhagen desperadoes doing at live shows? We’re almost afraid to guess - and we can’t wait to find out.

Kinsky
The legend returns! Founded in the early 90s by philosophy students at the University of Warsaw, Kinsky combined remote musical styles into a revolutionary and intriguing whole: it was as brutal as metal, as furious as hardcore, and yet it was progressive, exploratory and broke the rules that defined genres. Rather than give interviews, Kinsky wrote manifests; their concerts became multimedia performance art, and their only album, Copula Mundi, evoked more perplexity than admiration when it first came out. It took years for us to appreciate just how exceptional a band Kinsky was. And is, because they’re back. And not only are they reissuing their debut album, they’re also releasing their second LP, recorded in 1997!

Songhoy
Blues Tinariwen wasn’t an isolated phenomenon: it was merely the tip of the iceberg. The Mali music scene continues to surprise us with its diversity and vitality, as exemplified by Songhoy Blues’ sensational debut. Displaced by instability in their part of the country, these Timbuktu natives moved to the capital of Mali, Bamako, where their exuberant desert rock immediately caught the attention of talent scouts. They recorded their debut album Music in Exile (released in February) with producer Nick Zinner of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and they launched their triumphal tour of Europe with concerts alongside Damon Albarn.

Ought
They’re from Montreal, and they’re on Constellation Records. That’s enough to give any music fan a vague idea of what their music is about. Vague, but wrong: for starters, these young musicians aren’t Canadian – they’re American and Australian – and they’re more about straightforward post-punk rather than artsy prog-rock visions. Their 2014 full-length debut, More Than Any Other Day, was a response to anyone who complained that no one was keeping the ugly traditions of The Velvet Underground and Fugazi alive.

Steve Gunn
An American singer-songwriter whose eclectic style evokes thoughts ranging from psycho-folk to Lou Reed’s grim urban ballads. After last year’s release of Way Out Weather, it looks like this excellent guitarist and intriguing lyricist has finally received the recognition he deserves.

Der Father
Yet another revelation bearing the Lado ABC seal of approval, and - with the album Wake Up - one of the most interesting debuts of the past year. Joanna Halszka-Sokołowska’s inspired vocals and guitars are a dominant element, but this mix of lyricism with vulgarity and poetry with noise would be incomplete without Daniel Pigoński on the keyboards and Jerzy Rogiewicz behind the drums.

Ketha
The avant-garde outskirts of metal. Faithful and talented students of Meshuggah in a past life, Ketha have transformed into an unpredictable jazz-metal beast whose music is a battlefield between the forces of brutality and virtuosity. The victor is unbridled imagination, as you’ll discover if you have a listen to their latest EP, titled #!%16.7.

Wilga
The Tri-City is a bottomless source of new and intriguing sounds - something we here at the OFF Festival have been taking advantage of for a decade. This time our invitation has been accepted by the Gdańsk-based band Wilga, whose 2014 EP proved that guitar-drive indie rock can still sound fresh and intriguing.

Sonia Pisze Piosenki
“Sonia writes songs” and performs them beautifully. Inspired by the work of Cat Power and Laura Marling, Sonia Wąsowska’s acoustic compositions are wonderful, but her emotional interpretations give them another dimension. We still can’t get over her mid-2014 debut EP, Friends to Lovers, and we hope to hear something new any day now. Especially at her OFF Festival show.

OFF Festival 2015 Tickets
Tickets are now available for 200 PLN at the OFF Shop.
The price of a camping spot is 60 PLN, with an additional night (August 6/7) for 20 PLN.

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OFF Festival


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