The 35th Druga Godba festival will feature 16 concerts by artists from 11 countries and four continents across seven venues in Slovenia’s two largest towns. We will be joined by fast-rising London soul-Afrobeat collective Kokoroko, a group of Ukrainian purveyors of pagan rhythms with Slavic soul called DakhaBrakha, a gender-challenging artist from the heart of Brazil in Liniker e os Caramelows, the eclectic, cataclysmic rock virtuoso guitarist Yonatan Gat backed by the sounds of the American indigenous tradition, the new-old urban rhythms of South Africa’s Soweto with BCUC, and many others.
Kokoroko’s “Abusey Junction” currently has 27 million YouTube views (and counting) and, since March, we’ve been able to enjoy their studio work on vinyl too. Kokoroko, which means ‘be strong’ in the Nigerian language of Orobo, is led by trumpeter Sheila Maurice Grey. The band cut their teeth in the clubs of London playing the West African styles of Afrobeat and Highlife, and are now a firmly established favourite on the rising jazz-groove scene. The mighty Fela Kuti remains the strongest influence on the youth of musical London – something that connects this band with its predecessors as well as with some of Druga Godba’s very first acts.
Ukrainian quartet DakhaBrakha, which means “give-take” in Old Ukrainian, love to experiment with Ukrainian folk music, which they mix with sounds and voices from other parts of the world. DakhaBrakha began life at the Kiev Centre of Contemporary Art (DAKH) and the group have never lost sight of their roots in the theatre. The unforgettable sound of their music rests on an astounding vocal range that only fully comes into its own in live performance. We can’t wait for this bout of Ukrainian “ethno chaos”.
Estonian violinist and vocalist Maarja Nuut is already familiar to Ljubljana audiences from the MENT festival and the Tuesday concert series at Cankarjev Dom. This time she’ll be luring us into her intimate soundscape with the help of Ruum, who subtly augments her musical cortex with the pulsating electronics of his own expressive musical language. The dream sequences of the Baltic folklore tradition and the marks left by personal experience will be accompanied by the startling visuals of Kristjan Suits. With atmosphere washing over us like the infinite light of plankton at night, there’s much more here than we dare feel.
Tickets on sale online and at mojekarte.si outlets.
Organisation: Kino Šiška.