Telekom Electronic Beats, Telekom’s exclusive music and lifestyle program has played an important role in the music scene of many large cities all across Europe for more than 15 years. Last year the prestigious series Telekom Electronic Beats Festival was presented as a specially curated multi-day, multi-venue spectacle that makes a big comeback in the fall of 2016 with top notch names from the scene. Additional to an international mixed pop and electronical line-up the festival will feature a few cultural special events right in the urban heart of Budapest which will be announced soon.
In Budapest we are pleased to confirm two great headliner bands that put pop music and electronica in a different perspective. Natasha Khan’s glorious and multiple Mercury Prize nominee Bat For Lashes project is like an unsolved but beautiful mistery: at her most powerful she is able to create her own universes and pull the listener right into the middle of them. It’s no surprise that her music has been likened to that of Björk (who herself attended Khan's early gigs), Kate Bush, PJ Harvey, Annie Lennox and Fiona Apple. Bat For Lashes will definitely create a few intimate moments by performing the songs from her critically acclaimed record The Bride, which is concept album about a woman who go on a honeymoon trip alone after her fiance was killed just before their wedding.
To counterpoint Khan’s sublime tales, leftfield synth-rockers Is Tropical will make things a bit fuzzier. They are not your typical indie band: after forming in East London in 2009 and getting an offer from the respected French label Kitsuné, rather than the usual hipster venue to hipster venue route they chose to blow their money on playing in the furthest reaches of the planet, from Venezuelan rock festivals to Russian house parties or south-east Asia. This mindset is consistent with their ever-iridescent, weird-exotic songs that will definitely prepare our feet for the the rest of the night.
On the dancier side, one of the international clubland’s most sought-after kingpins Julio Bashmore will bless the decks. Growing up in bass music hotbed Bristol listening to his older brothers’ hip-hop tapes Julio soon found himself gravitating towards the lower frequencies. After spending considerable periods of time sharpening his mixing and productions skills, Claude VonStroke's label tellingly signed an EP's worth of his material for his very first release. This breakthrough also meant a difficult decision: choosing between university and making music. What happened next is pure magic - labels, media and clubbers seemed to instantly 'get' the skewed, bass-driven angle at which Julio attacked house music and has been doing this ever since.
Another key act of this year’s festival is the Manchester-born, London-based producer Sam Shepherd, known as Floating Points. His unanimously applauded debut album, 2015’s Elaenia is an incredibly special material that draws inspiration from classical, jazz, electronic music, soul and even Brazilian popular music. But Floating Points has established himself as one of the forerunners of today’s new dance music movement way before this unique release: he earned heavy loads of respect for his remarkably forward-thinking DJ sets that put him among names like Caribou and Four Tet, having performed all over the world at events and clubs such as Output NYC, Trouw, Sonar, Panorama Bar and the much-missed Plastic People.
We’ll also have KiNK on the bill: being based in Sofia, Bulgaria, without a support network, a campaign or any media hype, his music alone – live and in the studio – created a momentum whose end we have yet to see. Having met Neville Watson over the internet, he first gained recognition with the duo’s collaborative releases on Amsterdam’s Rush Hour. But it was an unassuming video of KiNK tweaking a drum machine at home that landed him a gig at Berlin’s ever emblematic Panorama Bar. By today, he has played the world several times over and also became one of house music’s most in-demand remixers.
More lineup announcement coming in the near future.
Venue: Akvárium Klub, 12. Erzsébet tér, H-1051, Budapest, Hungary