From Wednesday to Saturday next week, the Reeperbahn Festival will return to Hamburg. The showcase festival and music industry conference takes over, as you may already have guessed, the city’s Reeperbahn district, playing host to around 300 artists and 28,000 attendees, including 2800 industry delegates. And if you haven’t been before, it’s worth noting that it’s quite an experience.
Of course, if you’re one of those attendees preparing for the dizzying experience, then deciding which gigs to go to can be daunting in itself. Our top tip would be to pick things mostly at random, but you should probably start with a basic itinerary in your head, so we’ve put together this here playlist of ten acts it would not be a bad thing to see.
A REEPERBAHN TEN
Listen to this playlist on Spotify, and then read on to find out more about our choices.
01 Chloe Howl – No Strings
One of many artists representing new music from the UK, Chloe Howl is slowly building the foundations for what I think it is safe to assume will be quite a 2014 for her. We approved of this track in December last year.
02 GJan – Not Afraid
Also CMU approved, though more recently (ie yesterday), GJan is one of two artists heading over to Hamburg from Lithuania, along with rock band Colours Of Bubbles. Her Katy Perry-esque pop definitely has potential to see her break out internationally.
03 Tove Lo – Habits
Tove Lo’s candid lyrics sometimes feel a bit like attempts at manipulation. And the same could be said for the hooks, which stealthily claw into your brain while you’re thinking about that.
04 Kate Boy – Northern Lights
Like Tove Lo, Kate Boy are also from Sweden. If you’ve not heard and fallen in love with ‘Northern Lights’ yet then, bloody hell, it’s about time.
05 DENA – Thin Rope
Representing Germany in our playlist is Berlin-based Bulgarian rapper DENA, who first came to prominence as guest vocalist on The Whitest Boy Alive’s two albums. Since then she’s carved out her own sound, and is working with UK label POP unLTD.
06 Ghostpoet – Cold Win
Not, perhaps, what you could class as ‘new’ music now, but Ghostpoet is still carving out a niche for himself, and these showcase festivals are very important for that. James Blunt is also playing, which is, you know, a piece of information.
07 Elliphant – Music Is Life
Representing mashed up pop and reggae in a way that has somehow won us over is yet another Swede, Elliphant. And that’s all I think needs to be said about that.
08 Eye Emma Jedi – Places
Now, you might say that this Norwegian band’s name is terrible, but it is very easy for them to track people mentioning them on Twitter. So bear that in mind when you’re tweeting critiques of their name. Ahem. Also, listen to their music, they’re good enough to carry it off.
09 Kvelertak – Åpenbaring
More Norwegian rock now, or specifically metal in this case. Kvelertak are another more established name. If they’re a new one on you, just make a note to arrive early for their show, because they always draw a big crowd.
10 Willis Earl Beal – Coming Through
It’s not just Europeans, you’ll always find a good number of US artists who have made the trip to Reeperbahn. Amongst them this year is Willis Earl Beal, whose very good second album ‘Nobody Knows’ is just out.
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