Starting with Patrick Wolf, who takes the stage at the Katowice Cultural Center at 6:00 pm sharp on Thursday, August 1, and ending with Austra, who’ll be shutting off the lights after their DJ set at 4:15 am on Monday, August 5, just before dawn: we’ve got the entire detailed schedule for the eighth edition of the festival. You’d better get a good night’s sleep before heading down to Katowice, because this is going to be one intense weekend.
But before we get to the festival program, we’d like to introduce a few more of the artists we’ve invited to perform in Katowice this year:
The Soft Moon
Oakland-based Luis Vasquez is a loner type and the The Soft Moon would probably have remained a solo project, were it not for the musician’s drive towards an absolutely perfect live sound. The band plays a dark, noisy variety of trance music, taking inspiration from such disparate acts as Suicide, Death in Vegas, and even Joy Division. Check out their latest album, Zeros – heavy stuff. 1926
A Tri-City act whose formation was inspired by – drumroll, please! – the Swans concert at last year’s OFF Festival. Given their back story, you’d expect this band to be loud, noisy, and trancey, and that is precisely what they are. Fans of Kiev Office and Karol Schwarz All Stars will find the lineup familiar, but this an entirely new project. They’ve come to pay their debt, premiering their new album Bury the Ghost at the OFF Festival. It’s just three tracks, but they make up a solid 40-minute attempt to establish communication with outer space.
Another Tri-City band, but with slightly different emotions this time. Led by Grzegorz Kwiatkowski, this band explores the reaches of a more gentle variety of rock, but don’t mistake smooth for pretty: these lyrical and musical experiments bring to mind The Velvet Underground and The Doors. Trupa Trupa’s latest album, titled ++, was recorded in Gdansk’s New Synagogue, with guest performances by Mikołaj Trzaska and Tomasz Ziętek. The critics are unanimous: this is one of the most original bands on the Polish music scene.
Peter J. Birch & The River Boat Band
Some find it hard to believe that Peter J. Birch is actually Piotr Jan Brzezinski from the Lower Silesian town of Wołow; his latest album, When the Sun’s Risin’ Over the Town, which he’ll be promoting at the OFF Festival, is a solid portion of classic, rootsy folk Americana. Peter performs with an excellent live band featuring members of Silver Rocket/Happy Pills, Turnip Farm, and Let the Boy Decide.
They claim to play what they call “regressive rock with a pinch of desert and space vibes.” The band features musicians from Broken Betty – Jan Galbas, Sebastian Sawicz, and Piotr Paciorkowski – along with Wojtek Lacki of God’s Own Prototype and Marek Kostecki, who recorded and performed with Broken Betty while they were promoting their first album, The Sorry Eye. What was supposed to be a one-off homage to the golden years of space rock ended up summoning a spirit that just wouldn’t go away. Apacity’s debut album, Encounter One, crushes you with the sheer power of its sound before drawing you out into space with its psychedelic trance. We’ve got really high hopes for this concert.
The band Moja Adrenalina, whom OFF Festival audiences will remember from two years back, flew to California to lay down tracks for their new album at the legendary Ross Robinson’s studio (Korn, Sepultura, Slipknot)… only to disband and immediately reform with the same lineup but a new concept and a new name: Semantik Punk. Sounds complicated, doesn’t it? No less complicated than the music on the album abcdefghijklmnoprstuwxyz, but it’s something you just have to see and hear: a Polish band once again paves the way for the development of extreme guitar rock.
This Warsaw trio was founded in 2011 by guitarist and vocalist Daria and drummer Karol (Warsaw City Rockers), supported by bassist Rafał (Czerw Narodu). They play simple yet dynamic songs, heavy on the guitars and with just the right amount of melody. (Post)-punk pure and simple.