OFF are proud to announce that the experimental rock legends Swans are returning to Poland for a farewell show in 2017, to be held at the OFF Festival. Swans frontman Michael Gira will also serve as curator of the Experimental Stage. Plus The Black Madonna, Circuit des Yeux, and Kikagaku Moyo also join the festival lineup, taking us from a dancefloor uprising in Chicago to a psychedelic trip to Japan.
The excitement is mutual. Here’s what Michael had to say about the event:
“The OFF Festival in Poland provides the highest possible musical experience for both the audience and the performers. I once played a show on the planet Venus, and compared to OFF, it was like singing to a gang of angry inmates in a dark cell in a federal penitentiary. The scenery is out of this world, the production is lubricated and sensual, but most importantly, the beautiful Polish people in the audience guarantee a year of sleepless, dream-drenched erotic and sorrowful nights filled with impossible longing.”
…But with one minor caveat: this time Michael’s desires will be fulfilled. First, the show in Poland will be his final performance with the band in this format (the group’s future remains uncertain, but this is definitely the end of Swans in their current form), and, second, he’ll also be performing a solo concert. Finally, Michael Gira is also coming to Katowice as a guest curator of the Experimental Stage, where he’ll be responsible for an entire day’s lineup. And he does have some experience in this regard: he crafted the program for Mouth to Mouth, held as part of the excellent Dutch festival Le Guess Who.
The 2017 OFF Festival Katowice will take place August 4–6, 2017, as always at Three Pond Valley. Tickets (price: 230 pln) are now available at the OFF Shop. www.off-festival.pl/pl
When The Black Madonna takes the stage, you know it’s about to go down. We’ve invited one of the world’s most popular and respected female DJs, one whose sets rest on the delicate balance between dependable hits and bold new discoveries, a well-regarded producer, to name but Exodus and A Jealous Heart Never Rests, and a resident host at the legendary Smart Bar in Chicago, which — under her curation — has been lauded as one the best clubs in the US.
“Dance music needs riot grrrls. Dance music needs Patti Smith. It needs DJ Sprinkles. Dance music needs some discomfort with its euphoria. Dance music needs salt in its wounds. Dance music needs women over the age of 40. Dance music needs breastfeeding DJs trying to get their kids to sleep before they have to play. Dance music needs cranky queers and teenagers who are really tired of this shit. Dance music needs writers and critics and academics and historians. Dance music needs poor people and people who don’t have the right shoes to get into the club,” says The Black Madonna, a woman who’s transforming club culture before our very eyes. We’re confident that her OFF Festival performance will be a transformative experience for us, as well.
Circuit des Yeux is the artistic alter ego of the American singer Haley Fohr, but it’s not her only one: she is also known to the world as the mysterious outlaw Jackie Lynn. In Fohr’s case, it’s impossible to determine with complete certainty the boundaries between the personal and the artistic. The intimate, disturbing songs performed in a low, dark voice pluck your most sensitive heartstrings, touching your most deeply-hidden spots and emotions. To experience this for yourself, try the album In Plain Speech (Thrill Jockey, 2015), recorded by Circuit des Yeux in collaboration with friends from the Chicago alternative scene: musicians involved in such projects as Cave, Bitchin Bajas, and Little Scream. Pitchfork calls it a “meditative and mesmerizing” album, and it’s hard to argue otherwise.
The name Kikagaku Moyo, as we all know, translates to “geometric patterns.” And there’s plenty of irony in that name, because while the music played by this Japanese band is full of elaborate but disciplined art-rock structures, they bend and dissolve in psychedelic acid. The musical references range from Krautrock to Indian ragas to their own local psychedelic traditions, chief among them being Acid Mothers Temple. You’ll find a sample of their sound in the OFF Festival Katowice 2017 promotional video. Kikagaku Moyo was founded in Tokyo in 2012, but they’ve already put out four albums, the latest of which, House in the Tall Grass, is a truly untethered flight into the stratosphere. Do you have the guts to get on board?
A truly unique boutique music festival, OFF Festival takes place in ‘Three Lake Valley’, Katowice – a beautiful green oasis in the heart of industrial Silesia. OFF Festival is a way of life, one that flies in the face of current trends and stays true to itself, and the ethos of organiser Artur Rojek is firmly aimed at supporting art and music with the festival bringing many acts to Poland for the first time. OFF Festival is growing in prominence year on year driven by the festivals forward–thinking, eclectic music policy. From the greatest alternative music stars from around the world to the increasingly strong Polish scene, OFF festival has inspiring music in abundance.