BRDCST: THE FINAL PROGRAMME
BRDCST is the outstanding indoor spring festival in which AB spotlights musical boundlessness. The name is a direct reference to the retro-futuristic, electronica-pop of the English band Broadcast, which released inspiring albums like ‘Haha Sound’ and ‘Noise Made By The People’ over the past decade. BRDCST focuses on artists who set great store by musical innovation. Our musical instinct does the rest.
BRDCST is proud to announce the final pieces of its programme. No less than 20 names were recently added. This brings the total to an impressive 50 artists. They will perform over five days. BRDCST has never looked so diverse: it will welcome artists from cities including Cairo, London, Istanbul, New York, Ljubljana, Berlin, Copenhagen, Chicago, Agadir, Lisbon and Sofia. From Danish female, black metal to London hip-hop influenced by jazz, from South African gqom to Turkish psychedelics, from hot-tempered footwork from Chicago to Bulgarian voices, from Japanese minimalism to Scottish hip-hop: BRDCST has never sounded so diverse.
A UNIQUE, EUROPEAN FIRST: LE MYSTÈRE DES VOIX BULGARES: SPECIAL GUESTS: LISA GERRARD
It seems like the world is embracing Le Mystère Des Voix Bulgares once again. The reviews of their performance at Le Guess Who? at the end of last year were nothing short of ecstatic. Their brand-new single ‘Pora Sotunda’ appeared just before the end of the year with none other than LISA GERRARD (Dead Can Dance), a diehard fan. She once stated: "I saw them live and I just thought: that’s IT. That’s the top. You can’t go further." Lisa Gerrard also performed on Le Mystère Des Voix Bulgares' new album, which will appear this spring, and she freed up her schedule in order to attend BRDCST. A true honour and a European first!
BRDCST GOES FOOTWORK
In the same way that techno will always be associated with Detroit, hip-hop with New York and grime with London, footwork will always be linked to its birthplace: Chicago. Footwork is a music genre and a form of extremely fast, battle-style street dance that originated in the 1990s (!) with a speed of 160 bpm. It incorporates lots of influences from house and techno. The major icons are undoubtedly pioneer R.P. Boo, the London label Hyperdub that provided the genre with international recognition via DJ Rashad, and Jlin and Jana Rush, whose superb albums grabbed a spot in many 'best of the year' lists in 2017. BRDCST proudly invited JANA RUSH, whose ‘Pariah’ was called "the best album to come out of Chicagoan footwork to date".
‘BRDCST FREE RIDE’: FREE CONCERTS IN AB SALON & BONNEFOOI
You're experiencing BRDCST agoraphobia but want to sample some of this festival of discovery? Welcome to our ‘BRDCST FREE RIDE’! AB Salon (Steenstraat 23) and music bar BONNEFOOI (Steenstraat 8) are the permanent base for discovering exciting and innovative sounds daily. In the past you may have seen Carla Dal Forno, Moor Mother, Les Filles De Illighadad, Barst or Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith at work. This year Bonnefooi will focus on the African diaspora with, amongst others, SCRAAATCH FEAT. MHYSA & LAWD KNOWS and the excellent footwork of JANA RUSH. It will also focus on the NON Worldwide collective (see: NKISI and the Congolese/Swiss BONAVENTURE who, according to The Fader, makes ‘confrontational’ music).
We keep things more intimate in AB Salon with the African minimalism of STELLA CHIWESHE, slow life music by TOMOKO SAUVAGE of Japan, who labels her own music as ‘Musique Hydromantique’, the young Belgian euphonium player NIELS VAN HEERTUM and the beautiful, pure (folksy) song writing of ERIC CHENAUX and AARON ROCHE who cannot resist injecting layers of avant-garde into their music. Aaron Roche released one of the most beautiful albums of 2017 entitled'HaHa HuHu’ (see also: Sufjan Stevens and ANOHNI). Imagine Sufjan Stevens's ‘Illinoise’ meeting electronic artist Fennesz.
You can expect wonderfully global sounds from Stella Chiweshe, the Egyptian NADAH EL SHAZLY - according to The Quietus "An Egyptian voice that will haunt your dreams for days." – and ŠIROM from Slovenia who appeals to fans of Terry Riley, Hauschka, folk and Sun Ra.
INDIE LABEL SPECIALS: BLACKEST EVER BLACK, GLITTERBEAT & NON WORLDWIDE
BRDCST has a huge weakness for headstrong, independent record labels. That's why we invite several intractable characters each year. In addition to the label in residence CONSOULING SOUNDS, this year we have included tak:til, Glitterbeat, HARBINGER SOUND (see: Sleaford Mods), Blackest Ever Black and NON Worldwide.
For years BRDCST has cherished the intriguing UK label BLACKEST EVER BLACK, a name borrowed from an album by noise terrorist Russell Hasswell & Florian Hecker from 2007. BEB has published more than 100 releases from artists like Raime, F Ingers (with Carla dal Forno), Killing Sound, Prurient, Regis and AF Ursin. The label presents a lovely cross-section of their non-existent auditory boundaries with CARLA DAL FORNO, SILVIA KASTEL, the Finnish Belgian AF URSIN and the dark jungle of PESSIMIST.
BRDCST also forged an alliance with one of the most interesting vibrant global sounds labels of the moment: GLITTERBEAT. Glitterbeat impressed us in recent years with particularly exciting ‘worldly’ albums from artists like Tamikrest, Bixiga 70, Noura Mint Seymali and Gaye Su Akyol from Turkey. The last few years we saw King Ayisoba on the programme and now we see the Turkish psychedelics of BABA ZULA, JOSHUA ABRAMS & NATURAL INFORMATION SOCIETY, ŠIROM, the Maghreb bass adventures of AMMAR 808 & THE MAGREB UNIT (Kel Assouf meets Bargou 08). In the future, the label will re-release older work from ‘the mbira queen of Zimbabwe’: STELLA CHIWESHE.
Finally, welcome in the Magical Sonic World of NON WORLDWIDE! A collective with African roots that puts electronic experimentation first. Their mission? ’A rejection of mass culture and existing political conditions.’ NON Worldwide was founded by Chino Amobi (USA), the Belgian/Congolese Nkisi (UK) and Angel-Ho (South Africa). They ‘were quickly established as a serious force, musically, politically and sonically’, according to The Wire. Those who enter the NON Worldwide universe, quickly discover intriguing and colourful figures like Faka, Farai, Mhysa, SCRAAATCH, Elysia Crampton, Rabit and the standard-bearer Chino Amobi. BRDCST was able to persuade a handful of NON-affiliated acts: CHINO AMOBI, NKISI, FAKA, SCRAAATCH and BONAVENTURE will all be there.
AN EVENING WITH/CURATED BY SLEAFORD MODS: THE LINE-UP
It's no wonder that Sleaford Mods invited lots of friends and musically radicalised artists for their curatorship. We asked Sleaford Mods to go the extra mile. Almost all the artists are linked to HARBINGER SOUND, the label founded by Sleaford Mods manager/boss (sic) Steve Underwood that mainly specialises in wonderfully brutal, underground post-punk and experimental noise. The label's most famous name? STEVE IGNORANT, founder of anarcho-punk band Crass to whom Sleaford Mods is indebted. Why? Check: their musical rawness and working class ideology. The rest of the programme is a pure voyage of discovery. How about the lo-fi synth punk of NACHTHEXEN, the hardcore noise of THE LOWEST FORM, the post-punk sounds of STRUCTURE or the DIY anti-folk with a Sleaford Mods slant of MARK WYNN, whose song ‘I Just Don’t Understand Nick Cave’ we loved instantly. Sleaford Mods delivers the final uppercut with the brutal hip-hop of JOHN PAUL. Thanks lads!
We wish you an exciting voyage of discovery full of musical revelations!
Artistic Director AB
BRDCST ANNOUNCES SECOND WAVE OF NAMES
BRDCST is AB’s outstanding indoor spring festival spotlighting musical boundlessness. The name is a direct reference to the retro futuristic electronica-pop of English band Broadcast that released inspiring albums like ‘Haha Sound’ and ‘Noise Made By The People’ over the past decade. Artists who feel strongly about musical innovation form the focal point for BRDCST. Our musical gut-feeling does the rest.
At the end of October, BRDCST proudly released the first wave of names including the angelic voices of LE MYSTÈRE DES VOIX BULGARES, the (political) punk/rants of SLEAFORD MODS, the impelling live-electronica of JAMES HOLDEN & THE ANIMAL SPIRITS, the tribute by BARST for the 50th anniversary of THE VELVET UNDERGROUND’s ‘White Light/White Heat’ and to cap it all off THE MUSIC OF ‘STRANGER THINGS’ by KYLE DIXON & MICHAEL STEIN (S U R V I V E).
‘English Tapas’ by Sleaford Mods has now made it into the upper regions of many a end-of-year chart (see: Q, Mojo, Uncut, Rough Trade Shops,...) and – due to the popularity of the Netflix series ‘Stranger Things’ – we felt obliged to upgrade the Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein concert to a location with greater capacity. Even more good news for BRDCST fans: both Le Mystère Des Voix Bulgares and James Holden made outright impressive appearances at the latest edition of festival Le Guess Who?. De Volkskrant, as well as VPRO and AB, catapulted them into their AB-solute Top 10 of LGW? highlights.
But it's time to share a new shipment of names with our BRDCST adepts, you all. The bill is gradually being completed by a series of artists that have intrigued us, knocked us sideways or sent us completely head-over-heels in recent months (or years even).
BRDCST EXPANDS WITH 2-DAY JAZZ PROGRAMME & MORE JAZZ ACTS
BRDCST spreads its wings! Doing so with two extra concert evenings at a location just a stone’s throw away from AB: just recently renovated, jazz club The Music Village. Our focus in on The New Wave of Jazz that BRDCST paid abundant attention to last year (see: Yussef Kamaal, Shabaka & The Ancestors, Thundercat,... ).
Present: two jazz musicians who are strongly associated with hip-hop: JOSEF LEIMBERG and VELS TRIO. Josef Leimberg signed for a handful of guest appearances on Kendrick Lamar’s iconic album ‘To Pimp A Butterfly’, worked together with Kamasi Washington and signed with ‘Astral Progressions’ for one of the best spiritual jazz albums of recent years . Flying Lotus mate The Gaslamp Killer said this of it: ‘Holy Moses this shit is dope!’
Also dope: VELS TRIO PLAY MADLIB’S ‘SHADES OF BLUE’, a tribute for the 15th anniversary of the album by hip-hop producer/multi-instrumentalist Madlib (see too: J Dilla, MF Doom,...) that appeared in ’03 on the renowned Blue Note label. On this album, Madlib reworked Blue Note classics by the likes of Donald Byrd, Horace Silver, Herbie Hancock and Bobby Hutcherson ‘into downtempo and instrumental hip hop art.’
MDC III is the project of Nordmann saxophonist Mattias De Craene, who has himself assisted by no less than two drummers: Simon Segers (De Beren Gieren, Stadt, Black Flower,...) and Lennert Jacobs (The Germans, Hong Kong Dong,...). Echoes of John Coltrane’s ‘Interstellar Space’ album from ’67, with drummer Rashied Ali, are never far removed. MDC III can proudly share a stage with his hero James Holden. Lastly, with YODOK III, ambient/dronemaster Dirk Serries will go totally improv as central figure during the Consouling label night.
2018: YEAR OF THE CONTESTATION
In May ‘18 it is exactly a half century ago that turbulent student revolts took place in Paris and spread throughout Europe. To mark the occasion, the city of Brussels has designated 2018 as ‘Year of the Contestation’ and asked all cultural players to offer an answer to the question: ‘What remains of the social, political and cultural revolution 50 years after May ‘68? Which forms of contestation are we familiar with today?’
BRDCST is happy to meet that request. The current social and political climate unfortunately provides the ideal conditions for a wave of new protest music. Pitchfork: ‘It’s remarkable that—in a year hijacked by Drumpf’s reckless, witless Twitter belches—artists didn’t dive to meet his level. We heard more broad, embracing statements of community than we did rebukes and secessions.’ What's more, protest music was pervasive in ’17, and in all genres too. Pitchfork’s overview of ‘The Year In Protest Music’ was packed with diversity, containing tracks by the likes of Ibeyi, Fever Ray, Kamasi Washington, Kendrick Lamar, Perfume Genius... all the way to young country-star Margot Price.
BRDCST already got hold of ‘The angriest/most political band in Britain’, Sleaford Mods. With Scottish hip-hop trio YOUNG FATHERS we get even more political. The roots of these former Mercury Prize laureates are to be traced back to Nigeria and Liberia and their passion for politics – they actively speak out against anti-Islam demonstrations by Pegida and refuse to speak to Rupert Murdoch affiliated media – is clearly to be heard. The soundscape of electronica-artist CHINO AMOBIO is less cheery. Amobi’s debut ‘PARADISIO’ sounds outright brutal. The Wire: ‘PARADISIO’ is the soundtrack to all that’s wrong in the world, but very few artists have managed to capture such horror in such detail. If Hieronymus Bosch were to repaint hell today, it would look like ‘PARADISIO’ sounds.’
LABEL NIGHTS: tak:til & CONSOULING SOUNDS
BRDCST has a big soft spot for headstrong independent record labels and that is why, ever since the very first edition, we've spotlighted labels like Glitterbeat and Consouling Sounds. That's how it happened that BRDCST gave Ghent’s quality underground label Consouling Sounds instant carte blanche for the coming editions. And see here: in ’18 we’re actually celebrating the 10th anniversary of the label in style with ambient/improv/drone-master Dirk Serries as central figure.
Also in the spotlight: tak:til, the brand new instrumental sub-label of superb house-of-global-sounds Glitterbeat (see: Noura Mint Seymali, Bixiga 70, Tamikrest,... ). tak:til saw the light of day in ‘17 with the release of ‘Wood/Metal/...’ by New York duo 75 Dollar Bill. On the programme: the Slovenian ŠIROM that hovers between ‘Hauschka’s acoustic techno, the Sun Ra’s Arkestra’s galactic wanderings and Kronos Quartet’s omnivorous chamber folk.’ and JOSHUA ABRAMS & NATURAL INFORMATION SOCIETY that was described by The Guardian as a mix of ‘spiritual jazz, spiky post-rock and Terry Riley-inspired systems music’. BRDCST is about to present the first Belgian tak:til night ever.
A NIGHT WITH/CURATED BY SLEAFORD MODS SLOWLY TAKES FORM
Lastly, the lines of communication with Sleaford Mods have been running hot over recent weeks and the programme is gradually taking form. We'll be screening the brand new documentary ‘BUNCH OF KUNST: A FILM ABOUT SLEAFORD MODS’ that followed the band closely for two years and was recently crowned ‘Best film’ at the Q Awards. Sleaford Mods members will carry their weight on the night too. Frontman JASON WILLIAMSON will read from his own work for the very first time (see: ‘Grammar Wanker’, with the lyric-writer's collected works) and beatmeister Andrew Fearn will finish up behind the turntables under his own moniker EXTNDDNTWRK. The live acts being added to the programme are pretty much all associated with HARBINGER SOUND, the outlet of Sleaford Mods manager/boss (sic) Steve Underwood – who deals in glorious underground post punk and experimental noise. The label put out not only earlier Sleaford Mods releases but also albums, 7 inches and split EPs by the likes of Mark Wynn, Nachthexen, The Lowest Form, Consumer Electronics and Steve Ignorant (Crass).
The last portion of the BRDCST programme will be made known in the course of the month January.
Artistic Director AB
BRDCST ANNOUNCES THE FIRST NAMES
BRDCST is AB’s outstanding indoor spring festival spotlighting musical boundlessness.
The name is a direct reference to the retro futuristic electronica-pop of English band Broadcast that released inspiring albums like ‘Haha Sound’ and ‘Noise Made By The People’ over the past decade. Artists who feel strongly about musical innovation form the focal point for BRDCST. Our musical gut-feeling does the rest.
Probably without even realising it, you – diehard BRDCST fans – gave us an exceptionally fine gift during the last edition. Due to your overwhelming numbers we felt the infinite confidence to further expand BRDCST in going against the flow. We take that mandate to heart by deliberately opting for the most enriching, most contrary, most exciting and most unique sounds in the field of music.
BRDCST BANS MUSICAL BOUNDARIES
A sinister 80's ‘synth-soundtrack’ to one of the most talked about Netflix series of recent years? A unique 20-member Bulgarian female choir that gets sampled by Drake? An electronica producer who is inspired by Maroccan gnawa & Pharoah Sanders, and in turn is admired by Thom Yorke? Musical protest that leaves little wiggle room and makes matchsticks of Brexit? Contemporary-masked classical? A nocturnal and original tribute to The Velvet Underground classic ‘White Light/White Heat’ that will be a half-century old in 2018? Welcome to BRDCST! A very warm one even!
THE FIRST NAMES
The superb, Emmy-nomination-loaded, eighties sci-fi series STRANGER THINGS must be just about the most popular series on Netflix in recent years. The intriguing ‘synth-soundtrack’ that sets the sinister tone is at least as defining as the storyline itself and was made by 2 members (KYLE DIXON and MICHAEL STEIN) of S U R V I V E, an experimental synth quartet from Austin. Pitchfork previously praised the soundtrack as ‘Best New Music’ (or: 8/10). Portishead core-member Geoff Barrow is also a fan and released the soundtrack in Europe on Invada Records, his own label. BRDCST is rather proud to be the first to get them over to Belgium.
Strange how an ensemble that was immensely popular a quarter of a century ago can suddenly turn up again everywhere. So it is that the angelic voices of LE MYSTÈRE DES VOIX BULGARES appear at the progressive Le Guess Who? festival (Utrecht) amongst acts like K Á R Y Y N, Zeal & Ardor and James Holden. Lady Gaga recently used their music in her documentary ‘Five Foot Two’ and Le Mystère also hangs out amongst Grimes and Kali Uchis on ‘kick-ass women’, a recent Gorillaz mixtape. Drake and Leftfield sampled their music and Lisa Gerrard (Dead Can Dance) is currently putting the putting the finishing touches on an album with this unique 20-member female choir. Ready for a transcendental (re)discovery?
We are also proud to have JAMES HOLDEN & THE ANIMAL SPIRITS , with whom BRDCST notches up a formidable electronica high-flyer-topper. This is also the Belgian live-première of Holden's brand new, self-titled album that – according to Holden – is bursting with ‘synth-led folk-trance standards’ that reflect his love of Maroccan gnawa. Thom Yorke has been an unconditional fan for years now.
With AN EVENING WITH/CURATED BY SLEAFORD MODS , BRDCST lights the fuse of a theme that will be focused upon in many cultural houses in Brussels in 2018: The Social Revolution of 1968, to mark the 50th anniversary of the Parisian student revolt that took place in May ’68 and spread throughout the rest of Europe. Sleaford Mods, ‘the angriest (and most political) band in Britain’, provides the ideal opener with their furious punk/rap/rant/dance. What's more, they receive carte blanche and take the reigns by curating an entire evening and inviting other bands as they radically see fit.
‘White Light/White Heat’ - the second superb album by influential band THE VELVET UNDERGROUND – will be exactly a half-century old in 2018. That really must be celebrated, with a midnight concert at which we ‘quasi entirely’ blast the vinyl album through a soundsystem. ‘Quasi entirely’? Yep, we'll be skipping last track and classic ‘Sister Ray’ and replacing it with a real explosive live version performed by the transcendental atmospheric black shoegaze math noise drone band BARST. Of all the The Velvet Underground's tracks, ‘Sister Ray’ is the longest (17min 29 seconds to be precise)... but BARST will be making a 40 minute (!) version of it.
Welcome to BRDCST!
Artistic Director AB