Off-Festival 2023 – Who`ll show up?

Line-Up OFF-Festival 2023

Friday – August 4

Main Stage – Perlage:

Pusha T (USA) – RAP.
OFF! (USA) – Hardcore from LA.
Kokoroko (UK) Afrobeat, smooth jazz.
Rat Kru
(PL) Dance

Forest Scene:

Dréya Mac  (UK) – RAP.
Melody’s Echo Chamber (Francja) – Dream POP, Psychodelic Rock, Space Rock.
JORDAN (UK) – Elektro, Hip-Hop
Wojtek Mazolewski YUGEN 2 (PL) – Jazz
Biały Falochron (PL) – PostPunk, Hip-Hop, Elektro

Experimental Scene:

Gilla Band (Irlandia) – Post Punk, Indie Rock.
Special Interest (USA) – Punk, Industrial.
Big Joanie (UK) – Post Punk, Punk Rock.
Butch Kassidy (UK) -Noise’owo-progresywna petarda!
Hubert (PL) – Rap

T Tent:

Homixide Gang (USA) – Trap
Underscores (USA) – Elektronika, Dubstep
GONE (France) – Techno
Yann (PL) – RAP
Koń (PL) – Techno

Saturday, August 5

Main Stage – Perlage:

Slowdive (UK) – Rock Alternatywny.
Spiritualized (UK) – Garage Rock, Space Rock.
Nation of Language (USA) – Indie POP, Post Punk.
Belmondawg/EXPO 2000 (Polska) – RAP.
Sad Smiles (PL) – IndieRock
Izzy and the Black Trees – PostPunk

Forest Stage:

Balming Tiger (Corea) – K-POP.
Ela Minus (Columbia) – Electronic, Dance POP.
Gurriers (Ireland) – Alternative rock, Post Punk.
Udary grają “Is This It” (PL)
We watch clouds
(PL) – Trush

Experimental Scene:

The Staples Jr. Singers (USA) – Gospel.
Jockstrap (UK) – Art POP.
Son Rompe Pera (Mexico) – Mexican marimba music, Rock.
Soyuz (Białoruś) – Pop, Jazz
Polski Piach (Polska) – Blues, Rock

T Tent:

NNAMDÏ (USA) – Pop
Mandy, Indiana(UK) – Industrial, Noise rock, Underground techno
Haru Nemuri(Japan) – J-pop, Rap, Post-hardcore, Art rock, Elektronika
Kampire / Nyege Nyege (Uganda) – Muzyka Świata
Tropical Soldiers in Paradise (PL) – Jazz, Hip-Hop, Dub

Sunday – August 6

Main Stage – Perlage:

King Krule (UK) – Indie Rock, Fusion Jazz, Post Punk
Confidence Man (Australia) – Electropop.
Hania Rani (PL) – Jazz, Alternatywa
Węże  (PL) – Hadrcore

Forest Scene:

Panda Bear & Sonic Boom (UK/USA) – Experimental.
Tamino (Belgium) – Indie Rock.
Calibro 35 (Italy) – Funk, Hip-hop.
Mind Enterprises (Italy)  – Dance, Electronic
Nene Heroine (PL) – Jazz, Rock

Experimental Scene:

EKKSTACY (Canada) – Post Punk, Indie Rock.
Joe Unknown (UK) – Alternatywa, Indie Rock.
Gaye Su Akyol (Türkiye) – Rock Turc
Lancey Foux (UK) – Rap
MOP (PL) – Alternative Pop, Electronics

T Tent:

Desire (Canada) – Synth-pop
Trupa Trupa (PL) – Rock, Indie rock, Rock psycho
Vlure (UK) – Post-punk
Obongjayar (Nigeria, UK) – Hip-hop, Rap
Furda (PL)
Ugory (PL) – Metal

The most interesting events in Poland on summer. Concerts, Festivals and outdoor events. Jazz, Rock, Reagge, Rap, Hip-Hop, Beer and traditional polish food.

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OFF-Festival

OFF Festival Katowice 2023

On August 4 in Katowice starts the biggest alternative music festival in Central/Eastern Europe.

Read our report from 2019 edition of OFF Festival here.

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OFF Festival is currently one of the largest and most prestigious alternative music festivals in Europe. The first four editions took place in Mysłowice, before being moved to the picturesque Three Ponds Valley in Katowice in 2010. Each year the leading Polish and international musicians showcase their alternative sounds on the festival’s many stages.

As Artur Rojek – the festival’s founder and director says, OFF was born from dreams and passion of sharing music. It was the first Polish event of its kind – tearing musical schematics, blending genres and electrizing everyone with innovativeness. It was reflected by the many awards the festival has quickly accumulated, including “Best Medium-Sized European Festival” award by European Festival Awards in 2011 and spots on TIME magazine’s “14 Music Festivals to Check Out in 2014” and The Guardian’s “10 of the Best Music Festivals in Europe”.

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OFF-Festival is a guarantee of musical experiences, where fans not only listen to the music, but also discuss it! There is also place for visual arts in form of paintings and sculptures, as well as written word in the festival’s Literature Cafe.

Wywiad z Oysterboy

Interview with Piotr Kołodyński (Oysterboy)

The post-pandemic return of OFF-Festival after two years was accompanied by a greater emphasis on indigenous Polish artists – from debutants to artists with experience on large festivals’ stages. Among the latter of those was Piotr Kołodyński’s solo act Oysterboy. The artist performed on the first day of the festival with his dedicated band (Artur Chołoniewski, Sebastian Polus, Antoni Zajączkowski). Despite the concert unfortunately coinciding with the most hellish weather conditions of that day and a few minor resulting problems (human- and equipment-caused), the band managed to give us a highly-rated performance demonstrating their craft, as well as numerous reasons to keep an eye on Oysterboy’s future – including announcement of his first album, coming soon.

Below is the edit and translation of the interview that Piotr Kołodyński gave FunInPoland’s representatives after the concert:

 

Weather vs Artist: 3-0?

At first we were actually happy with this weather. The kind of music we play feels like of a chilled-out and calm variety when played as recordings, but when we perform it live, we sometimes go all-out with guitars and drums. Such a way of spending our energy is quite a fitness routine. But with 50 degrees of Celsius inside the tent, we ended up completely drenched in sweat. It’s difficult to sing in these conditions, but on the other hand it’s actually satisfying to put in such an effort – like after a soccer game or triathlon.

Have you ever played in such conditions?

This was my debut on such a big stage inside an enormous tent – on such a major festival at that. This was quite a high bar to jump, to continue with sports analogies. As a minor sidenote – actually I am not a soccer fan.

Oysterboy is quite an unusual name for your music act. How did you come up with it?

Back when I studied in London, I used to carry a subway ticket card called Oyster Card. When visiting the city a few years later, I went to Tate Modern art gallery and bought a random book from a souvenir shop. It was a book about works of Tim Burton, who I knew little about past the common knowledge like him directing Batman movies from three decades ago. When I opened it, the first words my eyes landed on were Oyster Boy. At that time, I was already planning to found my solo music project. When I read that name, it instantly clicked in my head – this is the perfect name for me. Many people have told me that my eyes are like bivalves – like seashells with pearls in the middle. An oyster can be ugly on the outside, but beautiful on the inside. I empathize myself with this a bit – I also like to retreat into my shell from time to time. And the aforementioned London Oyster card, what with London being one of the cities I feel particularly associated with, possibly the most. So I simply decided that from then onward I am Oysterboy.

Until recently you were known mostly as the lead vocalist of Polish rock band Terrific Sunday, but now there’s Oysterboy, which is a primarily pop project. What led to your decision to take this direction solo?

I would emphasize that this is indie pop – there is a lot of independence in this sound. Furthermore, on stage we tend to lean towards rock music to spice our performances up. There’s definitely a lot of Terrific Sunday’s influence in this project – I write and sing the lyrics in both, after all. As Oysterboy I am also assisted by Terrific Sunday’s drummer Artur Chołoniewski. But I still went in this direction because I wanted to finally express myself through the softer music, of the kind that is currently on the rise in the West. This is a kind of bedroom pop – one a producer or musician can create in his own bedroom, still in pyjamas. It is also partially based on dreampop, of style similar to Slowdive or DIIV, the latter of whom is actually about to play today.

We took a partiular note of a specific change – as vocalist and lyrics writer of Terrific Sunday you were singing mostly in English, but your Oysterboy songs have – so far – all been sung in Polish.

Indeed. To give you a backstory, I did want to start this project with English songs, but when I consulted this with a few people, line of reasoning was basically: „Look, where do you want to create and promote your music?” – „In Poland, of course.” – „Then sing it in Polish.”. So I said okay, this would actually be challenging for me, and I ended up writing Polish songs only. But I cannot rule out releasing something sung in English in the future. Even now, whenever I post a guitar on social media, people from all over the world ask in comments when am I releasing this. And I’d feel a bit stupid answering that soon, but in Polish only. So I think that in the future I will end up making a few English compositions. In fact, whenever I make demos of Polish songs, they always start with English lyrics that are then translated into Polish.

In reference to this, can our international readers expect your concerts outside Poland in the future?

I really wish, but that would require Polish language to gain a foothold in international music scene, like Ukrainian and Russian did. For example tomorrow Molchat Doma from Belarus are going to play here on OFF. In the past they had a gig in Poznań – I was helping with promoting it and we ended up gathering an audience of a few dozen. It’s amazing that they managed to jump all the way to playing on festivals of OFF’s caliber. This is a kind of music that’s very close to my heart and has a lot in common with what I’m doing as Oysterboy. This shows that this approach to music has spread all over the world. Even though their language – unlike English – seems to disfavor singing at first glance, they’ve managed to succeed internationally. Who knows, perhaps Polish language will join this league some day. If this were to happen, I’m immediately doing a tour across Europe and USA.

How do we promote it? With our famous tongue-twister “Chrząszcz brzmi w trzcinie w Szczebrzeszynie”?

Even I have a hard time saying that one. (laugh) But my lyrics in Oysterboy are sufficiently soft that I believe even someone non-Polish might be able to sing it. At least to some degree. I don’t know if an average German could sing „miłość chcę, miłość chcę”. But I have my hopes.

When recording your Youtube music videos you’re using cameras from the 60s, reflecting the cinematographic aesthetics of that time. What convinced you to do this?

I really like the 60s overall. The Beatles are one of my all-time favorites, and they had a lot of stuff recorded with 8mm and 16mm cameras. There’s also something about analog movies that we no longer have in our smartphone and digital camera-recorded movies. That’s a completely different vibe – the imperfections, casettes with only 3 minute total length, the uncertainty how the recording will turn out before it’s processed, the relief and joy when it turns out everything went fine. That’s the essence of this vibe and a superb fit with my project, as the latter is also done in partially analog way, with a large dose of nostalgy and longing for the past.

What do you think are the odds that this vibe will become the mainstream of Polish music scene?

I think this is already becoming mainstream. For example we have artists such as Michał Anioł, who hails from total mainstream, yet features some neat guitars in addition to a nostalgic, melancholic playing style similar to Mac DeMarco. On the other hand we have Kacperczyk brothers with origins in trap – a genre that retained high popularity in Poland for a long time – that also use live instruments, guitars and percussion. It’s great that this is making a comeback, that this isn’t all about computers and production from samples anymore – that people play their music live. It’s a sign that this is making a comeback in Poland, and I believe it will enter the mainstream. This has been going on in the West for a decade. Maybe Poland is now going through the same thing – I would be very happy if this turns out to be the case.

What music do you listen to nowadays? Does it have an impact on your own compositions?

These days I’ve been passionately enjoying DIIV and it 100% has an impact. They are my #1 inspiration now. They’re soon starting their concert on the main stage and I’m running to the first row to sing and scream along to them. There’s also Beach Fossils, who are also friends with DIIV, as well as Wild Nothing – so projects in mostly indie pop style, just like me. But this differs among the artists – for example I heard that DIIV enjoy heavy hip hop despite making dreampop/shoegaze music. So there’s no rule that you need to create the kind of music you enjoy casually, though this is the case with me. I frequently return to The Beatles and other classics, but also enjoy some indie rock stars and harder sounds – Foals, for example. On occasions I may also enjoy a song by Rihanna, Rosalie or Beyonce – though I’m not a fan of Beyonce’s newer releases.

Your recent single „Mediolan” made together with Niemoc band is your first collaboration as Oysterboy. What was your experience with this teamup?

In the past Terrific Sunday did very few collaborations. One time we played with Mela Koteluk (Polish pop singer) on Fryderyk festival, which was an incredible experience. But I think that this will be a much more frequent occurrence as Oysterboy. Anytime an artist asks for a collaboration and I have time for it, I will simply answer “yes”. Collaboration is a great adventure that allows us to completely leave the bounds of what we usually do and take on a different role in a band. For example Niemoc did music that captivated me right off the bat and I thought „this is it”. I immediately proceeded to record some improvised lyrics while still in my pyjamas, most of which ended up in the final product. I got so hooked that I would absolutely love to have more collaborations like this.

Who would you like to collaborate with, for example?

Molchat Doma and DIIV are my dreams, but truthfully I would settle for any producer I respect. But I would even agree for any unknown producer, artist or musician if only he/she sends me some material and can feel a quality vibe.

The most interesting events in Poland on summer. Concerts, Festivals and outdoor events. Jazz, Rock, Reagge, Rap, Hip-Hop, Beer and traditional polish food.

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Talk about Soul Music

Interview with Durand Jones & The Indications

We had a great pleasure to interview Durand Jones (singer) and Aaron Frazer (drummer) of The Indications band before their concert on the first day of OFF-Festival Katowice.

How would you describe to the unaquainted where the term ‘soul music’ comes from and the relations between this music and its name?

DJ: I wondered for a very long time why did they call this music ‘soul music’, why did they relate it to the part within ourselves that is unexplainable, like spirit. What I came to think of is that black America during the time really didn’t have control over politics, they didn’t have wealth, so they didn’t have power nor education… they didn’t have control over a lot of things. But what they did have control of was their soul inside. And so you go to the States, you see soul food restaurants, you listen to the music like James Brown, who says ‘soul power’. And so I felt that the reason why they call this music ‘soul’ is because they felt an ownership to it, they felt that it was very deep and something really special inside. It’s something that can live with you when you’re sad, it can rejoice you when you are happy, you can go dancing on it, you can console a loved one… It brings about a feeling that comes from no other place than the soul. I feel like our music definietely taps into that space. We talk about love in different ways: platonic love, relationship love, love lost… We also talk about sociopolitical conciousness things – things that we want to change in America, things that we feel really deep inside, that are passionate to us. That’s why I feel they call it ‘soul music’.

Could you list your soul music icons from the 70s?

DJ: I really love what Stevie Wonder was doing in the 70s. I’ve been listening to a lot of his stuff lately, he is someone very impactful to me.

AF: I would also add Curtis Mayfield – a big influence, Smoky Robinson and Eddie Kendricks.

While you’re creating music do you focus more on adapting soul music to modern audiences or do you wish to preserve classic soul sound?

DJ: I think it’s our duty to push it forward. We stand on the shoulders of so many people that came before us. It’s our duty to not only embrace what they have done, but also to push it forward and bring it onto a new level. I feel like that’s what we are trying to do.

When it comes to coming up with new songs and their composition and production, how do you divide your work?

AF: We all bring ideas to the table. It’s primarly Durand, Blake and myself. We help each other shape the ideas. Maybe it starts with just a melody and somebody else has words. Durand may have a notebook with a hook in it, which might make me think of a verse to write. Sometimes somebody comes up with song that’s mostly finished. We do our own writing and we produce our own records – Blake and I produced our last album American Love Call.

Assuming that the five of you need to „pass the ball”, so to speak, between each other, in order to polish a song that you’re working on, have you ever faced the problem where the result was no longer true to the original vision you had?

DJ: I don’t think so. There’s definetely been songs that we worked on that we weren’t feeling at the time, but for me as a songwriter – I don’t throw anything away. I feel like if it’s not useful here and there, then maybe I can just put it in my bag and wait for the right time for it to come back.

AF: We’ve also had songs that start in one place and end up feeling very differently. Maybe the rhythm changes, maybe we try a different tempo…

DJ: Like What I Know About You.

AF: Totally, or Long Way Home. But that’s never been a problem. It’s that sort of fun of working in a group. You wind up arriving at a conclusion that you wouldn’t if you were by yourself.

Soul music can be both blisfull and bitter. As you said, on American Love Call you make forward refrences to current socioeconomic issues in United States. What made you raise your voice on this album?

AF: It’s time to say what you believe. It’s not time for subtelty in the United States right now. There is a real crisis, politically. We are facing crisis globally, environmentally. It feels like if you have any sort of platform, whether you are writing songs and people like them, or maybe you have a lot of Instagram followers – it’s time for all of us to say what we believe and fight for what we can. Time is of the essence.

DJ: There is a total legacy to it – people like Nina Simone, Marvin Gaye, Curtis Mayfield, Donny Hathaway. They’ve always been so proactive, speaking their truth, what’s going on in the climate, in the environment. It’s our duty to keep it going forward.

The current crisis is also a crisis of division within the American society. Do you think music could help mend differences?

DJ: It’s one of the things, but what I feel America has to do is really look at the root of their problems and why it’s so divided, why we’re so torn apart. Once we can really sit down and talk about that like civil human beings, maybe we can get someplace. I do believe that music can be a key to help us get there, though.

Considering that you have much more experience now, was production of American Love Call different from your first album?

AF: Definitely. There were a couple of big factors. We finally had a budget to work with, so there were things that we could accomplish, like having a string section, that we never even dreamed about while doing our first record. But we have also learned a lot from doing that first record on our own. Whether it was arranging harmonies or coming up with string melodies or just overall orchestration of parts, we were able to put those experiences to use and translate what was in our head to what we’re actually listening back to. It is a very special feeling to be able to do that.

We are very happy to be the first country in Eastern Europe to welcome you. Do you wish to carry on spreading soul music further on the east?

DJ: We would love to go all over the world with it, it would be amazing. It’s been very fun. Poland is cool, I dig it.

The most interesting events in Poland on summer. Concerts, Festivals and outdoor events. Jazz, Rock, Reagge, Rap, Hip-Hop, Beer and traditional polish food.

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Foals at OFF Festival Katowice 2019

Foals

Foals at OFF Festival Katowice 2019

Definitely one of the most anticipated concerts of the festival took place on Saturday night. As expected the leading indie rock band Foals once again performed a rousing show for Polish audience.

Foals since 2005 have already released 6 albums and another one is on its way. This year on March 8th Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost was released, the first part of a two album project. The release of the second part was announced for October 18. So far, the songs released in Everything Not Saved project paint a dreary picture of contemporary world filled with restlessness and decay. However, Everything Not Saved Part 1 differs from the band’s previous albums as it draws more from electronic music. Foals have announced that the two parts of the project will slightly differ but the details remain unknown.

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The most faithful Foals fans had been gathering in front of the main stage since early evening. It definitely paid off to pick a spot before the concert – easily the majority of OFF participants came to see Foals. The band did not only play songs from Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost such as Exits and White Onions, but also their all-time fan favourites such as My Number, What Went Down or Spanish Sahara. We also had the chance to hear Black Bull, the first song from the upcoming album. It goes without saying that the audience had a great time, dancing and singing along with the band. Fans were in rapture when the vocalist Yannis Philippakis came down from the stage to greet them. “It’s a special festival, a great audience and we’re happy to be here” – said Phillippakis to the public. It was great to see Foals in Poland again and hopefully soon we will have the chance to welcome them on a tour with their new album.

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Hania Rani na OFF Festival 2019

Hania Rani at OFF Festival Katowice 2019

Anyone who has not yet heard of Hanna Raniszewska should catch up with her as soon as possible. The winner of this year’s Gazeta Wyborcza award for the most interesting rising muic artists in Poland definitely met the expectations of the festival goers.

We had the chance to see Hania Raniszewska at the OFF festival twice – on Saturday in a duet Tęskno with Joanna Longić and in a solo performance on Sunday. Hanna Raniszewska is a former student of Fryderyk Chopin University of Music in Warsaw and Hochschule für Musik in Berlin. On 5 April 2019 she revealed her debut solo album titled Esja under the pseudonym Hania Rani. The album has ties both to Warsaw and Reykjavik. The artist is connected with Iceland by the Dowland project, which was a reenactment of the renaissance era composer’s work.

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After the raving performance of polish post-metal band Entropia, the Experimental Stage transformed into calm and peaceful space. However, like at the previous concert, the tent of the stage was full to the brim. Nevertheless, more and more festivalgoers were gathering around it. Everyone watched in silence as Hania Rani and her accompanying band prepared the instruments. The first track performed was a proof of her excellent pianistic skills. In the following compositions we could hear the gentle voice of Hania, which made the audience fall into a soothing trance. Aside from music no voice was heard in the tent of the Experimental Stage . The audience gathered outside the tent also listened in thought while laying on the grass with their friends. The performance of Hania Rania was certainly an remarkable experience at this year’s OFF Festival. This humble artist definitely deserves more attention

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The most interesting events in Poland on summer. Concerts, Festivals and outdoor events. Jazz, Rock, Reagge, Rap, Hip-Hop, Beer and traditional polish food.

Other reports