Inspired by the legacy of the Nigerian musician Fela Kuti, 13-piece Chilean orchestra Newen Afrobeat bring a Latin stamp to African rhythms with lyrics that echo Fela Kuti’s war-cry of 'music is the weapon'.
Embedding deep social messages about their roots in colourful and energetic staging, Newen Afrobeat is more than a simple orchestra, it is an experience of music, dance, and social awareness. Making noise on the Bo’Airigh stage this May is Joseph Malik & The Easter Road Northern Soul Band. Glasgow born of Nigerian, Scottish, and Irish heritage, Joseph Malik’s songs address identity as well as injustice, playing songs from his new album - Diverse Part 3.
Expect an achingly beautiful orchestral soul alongside a gritty, bare-knuckle funk, full of hard beats to match Malik’s combative energy. If diversity is a central story of Britain today then Diverse Part 3 is its brave, uplifting soundtrack.
These two acts join an already astounding line-up of world music led by European and African based collective Afro Celt Sound System; and elders of the traditional sound system L’Entourloop, with special guests N'zeng, Troy Berkley and BlabberMouf.
Elsewhere on the line-up there’ll be cloud hopping songs to get you moving in spirit and body from Jemima Thewes and the Fuse; acoustic and folky beats with an excellent sense of humour from Scottish, Irish and English pals Holiday Club; the anarchic ‘wierdness’ of the Wierdstrings; and emotive songwriting and atmospheric soundscapes from London-based singer songwriter Theo Bard.
Across the field and away from the Bo’Airigh stage, Knockengorroch Festival will continue the party into the wee hours of the morning with a banging roster of Dubstep, Jungle, Dance, and Techno.
Bristol-based record label and DJ collective rooted at the heart of drum and bass and jungle's underground music scene Born on Road, with sets from label owners and founder Aries and Kelvin 373. From the Stay Up Forever label and North London squat scene, Techno legend Aaron Liberator. A sound from the real underground; always humble, always representing Acid Techno and the Stay Up Forever collective sound. A turbo-charged performance from all singing, all dancing, punk, pop electronic duo My Bad Sister, mashing up traditional cockney-style performance with memorable melodies and heavy beats of all genres. Samedia Shebeen returns to Knockengorroch for a 10th year to transport late-night party-goers to an imagined jungle retreat. Forward-thinking club-wise music from all corners of Africa, Brazil, Colombia, the Caribbean and the Middle East mixed and blended though the high quality North Fire Soundsystem until the early hours to create an energy and ambiance like no other. Mungo’s MC this May is keeping the DUB in Dubstep. Sun of Selah is heavily influenced by the dubbed out sounds of Rankin Dredd, King Tubby and The Scientist; he is committed to keep the organic sounds of Dub alive with productions full of heavy-weight and stepping bass line. People who don't listen to lyrics properly tell us, jungle is massive - and award-winning Mrs Magoo is as big as they come. A dedicated junglist and motivated by pure passion for the music, Mrs Magoo can tear the roof off a dance at a moment's notice. One of the true innovators in Techno, Neil Landstrumm has released records on a wide variety of electronic music's finest labels over the last two decades. Always future proofed and laced with his own signature sound Landstrumm is an integral part of the UK electronic music culture. Plus compulsive disseminator of 90's sound Ma Bla; femme fatale of the free party movement ZoDownLo; raw infectious Techno grooves from Chris Fox aka Foxtrot; bold beats, brash baselines and upfront hooks from Toxicologist; and more. Club takeovers at the Festival will include sets from Samedia Shebeen, Leeds collective Mood Swings, Edinburgh based BBL, Dumfries collective Easy Skankin Crew and Sarra Wild from Glasgow’s creative network and club night OH141.
This year’s festival theme - Divas and Icons - was revealed earlier this month through a photo series with rap artist and singer Nova AKA Nova Scotia The Truth. Each year Knockengorroch announces a theme inspired by the local environment or Scottish heritage, encouraging festival-goers to join in by dressing up and getting creative with flags and props. Previous themes at Knockengorroch have included unicorns, river creatures, and celestial bodies.
Knockengorroch co-producer, Katch Holmes said: “We’re looking forward to welcoming everyone back to Knockengorroch Festival.
"We can’t wait to see how everyone interprets this year’s theme when we come together to celebrate music, community and land in May.”
Weekend tickets are available at www.knockengorroch.org.uk/tickets/