I was waiting far too long to write this article.
In early September, I went to Tri-City again this year. The destination was Gdańsk and Soundrive festival. Both staying in Gdańsk and presence at the “open” festival (only the second edition) were something new to me.
But first things first. Festival Soundrive can safely be called the new Off Festival (Off unfortunately moved away from its roots towards more well-known names and there’s nothing surprising about that), since a void after Off must be filled.
Soundrive has great potential – this year, its second edition was held, and invited artists, like Glass Animals or Temples, were very impressing.
The place where the festival is organized, are the areas of the shipyard – it’s unusual. All those destroyed buildings, huge cranes and almost unlimited terrain, and in addition to this, great club with a spectacular sound system – B90, make their contribution to the climate of this original event.
From the whole mass of artists, I wasn’t definitely disappointed by those concerts, for which I wanted to go for a long time, for example, Glass Animals, Small Cities and Temples. Each of them represents a different genre of music. On the one hand, Glass Animals played a very spirited concert (I’m willing to say that this was the best performance at this event), on the other hand, Temples, who have already played at the biggest festivals in the world, where the audience sang all their songs and was ready for their musical performance (songs lasting eight minutes, with many solos and improvisations of artists), they just didn’t fit into the format of the festival, because their performance was prepared for a much larger event (a very strange feeling, everyone who was there and who know them, surely felt the same). However, I was delighted.
However, such events are designed to broaden our musical horizons. I must admit that I was very positively surprised, because I became a fan of at least three new artists or bands.
The biggest surprise turned out to be a very intimate concert of Olivier Heim. Before the festival, I got familiar with his work, but not very precisely, and when sipping a beer, I heard these wonderful sounds, I immediately knew that his music will settle in my music player for a very long time. Olivier creates an extremely calm music. Sometimes it reminds me of the work of Toro y Moi from his first longplays, which is extremely good for me, because he has recently bounced back in a slightly different direction, leaving a little void which doesn’t compare to his first pieces.
Oliver’s music is like a summer breeze, definitely makes time nicer, and allows you to calm down and relax. His album is very consistent. It consists of only 9 tracks. (I am waiting for more!).
Listening to his concert, you could feel that Olivier is very real in what he’s doing. After each piece, he interacted with the audience, encouraged people to talk with him and he simply enjoyed that he can show what he truly loves. After his performance, I walked up to him with pleasure, but unfortunately I didn’t have any cash to buy his album; after a short conversation, Oliver handed it to me as a gift (thank him for that!).
Another band which I liked was Gengahr. Their style reminds me of Portugal The Man. They are cheerful and jumpy, perfect for concerts. Their performance was one of the most interesting at this event, and the audience was delighted.
The last band that permanently appeared on my playlists is Coals. It’s the Polish duo creating very calm music, inspired by the Scandinavian climate, with a light dose of folk. Beautiful vocals combined with sensual sounds, creating an incredibly moving set. My favorites sons are Wiosna (Spring) and Techno.
With this autumn weather, like in Coals song, there’s nothing left for us but to wait for spring, and then for the next edition of Soundrive Festival. Surely, they will surprise us with a great line up, so remember that name, because next year it will be one of the most interesting events in our country!
translation: Agnieszka Wawiórko