The Necessity of Independent Music Journalism is another interesting talk to check out, where a handful of journalists – including Louise Brailey (Crack Magazine) and Mariana Berezovska (Borshch) – will talk about the dramatic shift the music industry has experienced and the consequences suffered by all of its agents – labels, distributors, media, artists, public, etc. And last but not least, don’t miss the conversation between musician, artist and filmmaker Danielle de Picciotto, who’s one of the founders of the glorious Loveparade, and Sven von Thülen, a DJ who’s lived the transformation of Berlin through techno and electronic music. Together, they’ll comment on Berlin’s current state linked to the documentary Everybody in the Place: An Incomplete History of Britain 1984-1992, directed by conceptual artist Jeremy Deller under the commission of Gucci, which explores the rave culture in the United Kingdom in Thatcher’s times.
But Pop-Kultur is focused on music, so make sure to head to some concerts and performances, especially those that are commissioned works by the festival itself. For example, Rosaceae, who uses noise, brute sounds and experimental electronic music to deal with the systematic, violent suppression of women by Daesh. Or Magic Island’s Warm Heaven, a three-cantiche piece inspired by Dante’s Divine Comedy that will go through Inferno, Purgatory and Paradise while also featuring music from the musician’s latest EP. Or on a lighter note, Lisa Morgenstern & Bulgarian Voices Berlin, where the Berliner will explore Bulgarian folklore, music and dance.
And, naturally, the concert section: in addition to radical trans artist Mykki Blanco or the always unclassifiable and hauntingly beautiful CocoRosie, this year’s line-up is packed with interesting choices. Among them, Swedish singer Jenny Wilson, who was involved with The Knife some years ago and who’s published an album talking about sexual violence; Jungstötter, the artistic name of Fabian Alstötter – a former member of the band Sizarr –, with an enchanting grave voice and dramatic lyrics, who’s presenting his debut album Love Is; the Athens-based duo Iotaphi, whose electro-goth pop looks for beauty in people’s soul (something clearly visible in their music video of Kids of Chaos, featuring solely girls with Down syndrome); or BNNT, a Polish duo composed by Konrad Smoleński and Daniel Szwed who define themselves as art group, band crew, and tribe, and who perform both in festivals, art galleries, museums or the back of a truck.