Roadburn 2024: Notes From Day Three

Posted in Features, Reviews on April 21st, 2024 by JJ Koczan

Outside Koepelhal Roadburn 2024

In what I hope will be a defining moment of my day if not the rest of my year, I was sitting with Lee downstairs at the 013 for lunch — some greens and cheese; likewise simple and necessary — and I could feel my brain start to move to what I needed to be doing, some quick writing, starting this post, whatever. But I stopped. I reminded myself, out fucking loud, that I had the time to stay. And so I stayed.

That sounds like an small thing, and maybe it was when set against what the day would bring front to back. And I’m not gonna sit here and try to do some middle-aged-dude wellness philosophy here — neither the place nor the time, and frankly I can’t stand that shit you see on social media, vacuous endorsement of a capitalist idea of how to live; fodder for the tshirts they sell at Target — but as this homecoming has been emotional for me, I’m working not to run away from that.

I got through the writing, the minimal actual amount there was, and got to where I wanted to be well in time for when I wanted to be there. Go figure. Place in time.

Roadburn Saturday. Couch Slut on first at The Terminal, diving deep into avant sludge, noise, hardcore, grindcore and some spoken word over piano — Steve Blanco from Imperial Triumphant guesting — and trumpet, no less purposeful in the light jazz than the most slaughtering parts as they brought the released-yesterday You Could Do it Tonight album to life.

It was my first time seeing them — they’re from Brooklyn, so my only real excuse is I’ve never been cool — and there were times where it felt a bit like gazing at someone’s trauma through the sad and poetic storytelling of their songs, but Couch Slut’s aggressiveCouch Slut (Photo by JJ Koczan) confrontationalism was inner and outer, and they didn’t so much put these narratives on display as they did shove them up your nose like a covid test made of concrete.

The last song they played was longer — I hear that’ll happen with records — but I stuck it out through the intended challenge before stopping in at Hall of Fame to see the band put together by students from the Metal Factory music school. This is their second year featuring a group here, and, well, you want to support the kids. I very clearly was not alone in this thinking, as the room was wall-to-wall. The press of the crowd got to me quickly and I ducked out and back down to the 013 in plenty of time to stop in for a few minutes of Annelies Monseré as she opened the Next Stage with a pastoralia that felt folkish but experimental in its use of drone as more than just a backdrop to the four-part harmonies coming from the stage with the ‘band’ she led. Second flute of the weekend behind Tusmørke last night. Same room. Different context.

My next stop was the main stage for Kavus Torabi‘s commissioned piece, ‘Lion of the Lord’s Elect.’ I had no idea whatsoever what to expect from the set and won’t feign expertise on Torabi’s work through The Utopia Strong, Gong, The Holy Family, and so forth, but from melodic drone to two-drummer cacophony, with sax, bagpipes, synth, guitar, it felt like the construction of a psychedelic temple in that vast hall space. Never quite entirely still, never just about the wash, building up and receding back into its meditations — it was far removed from Couch Slut’s raw hurt and reality in general, a cosmic offering rife with float despite the double dose of kit percussion.

Like a lot of this Roadburn has been for me so far, ‘Lion of the Lord’s Elect’ was a chance to step outside of what I know or might chase down on my own. I’ll stop short of saying you have to step outside your comfort zone — remind yourself you don’t ‘have’ to do anything — but a willingness to take on somethingAnnelies Monsere (Photo by JJ Koczan) unknown is a big part of a commissioned project like this, which only happened because Roadburn made it happen. In its intricacies and overarching flow, proggy noodling and heavier push, it tugged at the limits of where space rock can generally go, and hell’s bells I’m glad I saw it. That hour went fast, and down to the last chime that finished, it was a master’s work. I watched the whole thing.

Feeling antsier today, which might just be fatigue, but still. After Kavus Torabi and co. ended, I moved downstairs to get water and then back up and around 013, looked in on Next Stage, nobody on, and decided to run back to the hotel for a few minutes, take a pill, brush my teeth — the salad/cheese combo had my mouth feeling fuzzy — and take my shoes off for a few minutes. Some of that was nerves for seeing The Keening, the Portland, Oregon, outfit led by Rebecca Vernon (ex-SubRosa) who would shortly perform their 2023 debut, Little Bird (review here) in full on the main stage. The lineup she’s assembled for the tour the band are about to undertake with Bell Witch — they’ll pick up in Spain on a couple days — includes Billy Anderson (too many to list for his production background, all the names tried to escape my brain at once, but he’s handled low end for Blessing the Hogs, High Tone Son of a Bitch and a slew of others) on bass and Nathan Carson of Witch Mountain on drums, as well as Andrea Morgan (Exulansis) on violin and vocals and Christy Cather (Ails, Ludicra) on guitar and some vocals, and if all that pedigree doesn’t do it for you, fine, the band stand on their own anyway.

The main stage has a lot to offer in terms of a flow from one act to the next, and reminds me a bit of years past in how a linear progression is set up throughout the day. That applies less to Kavus TorabiKavus Torabi (Photo by JJ Koczan) than to The Keening and the three acts that will follow them, but you can still find threads from one to the other, The Keening into Lankum, into Khanate and Blood Incantation. Or at least you can put a story to it that makes sense in sound. It’s not just one band piled on another. There’s thought, and heart, put into it.

I took pictures for two songs of The Keening and went up to the balcony for “Little Bird,” which Vernon dedicated to the people of Palestine, and the rest of the set. After a couple minutes I had to sort of force myself to put the camera down, put my phone away, repeat my various mantras about Freeburn this and that, living the thing instead of just covering it, etc., and I think I was probably better off for that. Little Bird, which has only grown on me since last year — and I liked it plenty when it was reviewed — culminates with “The Truth,” the studio version of which is 17 minutes long. No, I didn’t time it from the stage, but it was no less expansive in-person in its multi-movement unfolding and almost chaptered feel. Vernon’s voice is seething at times, the patterns of her lyrics rooted in ’90s post-hardcore emphatic repetition but so far removed from that thing as to be her own. I’d been looking forward to seeing them since I found out I’d be at Roadburn, and I’m not saying I wasn’t going to check out Khanate in a couple hours, but in many respects they were my priority of today and the fest overall. They did not disappoint, and Morgan nailed the operatics later in “The Truth,” making it all the more gorgeous and stirring. I hope the tour goes well, hope they do more.

Back and forth a bit in the break, but the truth is I was tired, found a corner, and stayed there, so it wasn’t much more than getting water. I ate a pack of almonds I brought from home and had tucked in my camera bag. I did a couple Hungarian lessons on my phone. I did not socialize. I The Keening (Photo by JJ Koczan)waited until about 15 minutes before Lankum went on, then went to the photo pit to do the thing. There’s always one lonely day at Roadburn. Should’ve been yesterday, was today.

Even Lankum’s line check was heavy, though, and it was mostly the four of them singing. That was a thing to dig, even if Irish folk ‘n’ drone isn’t exactly going to pull you out of your own head most of the time. I recognized “Go Dig My Grave” from last year’s False Lankum later in their set and I very obviously wasn’t alone in that. The main stage room was as full as I’d yet seen it — true I wasn’t in it at all on Thursday, when Chelsea Wolfe played, so if you want to just take that to mean “quite crowded indeed,” go ahead — and with arrangement dynamics that came through in vocals that moved into and out of four-part harmonies, found instruments swapped out between songs and persistent low end hum that I think came off the big drum in back that threatened to swallow melody and audience alike and I’m pretty sure was on purpose, Lankum harnessed traditionalism to suit the purposes of their craft, whether it was an original piece or not. When they left, the P.A. played Cinder Well’s “No Summer,” and that felt right.

Khanate were next.

It would not be my first time seeing Alan Dubin (O.L.D., Gnaw, etc.), Stephen O’Malley (SunnO))), Burning Witch, etc.), James Plotkin (O.L.D., Lotus Eaters, Atomsmasher, etc.) and Tim Wyskida (Blind Idiot God, Insect Ark, etc.) together on stage. One dark, deeply inebriated night two decades ago, I was in their presence as they played a Southern Lord showcase at SXSW that also featured Outlaw Order, Earthride (RIP Sherman), Place of Skulls and Graves at Sea.Lankum (Photo by JJ Koczan) Yes, I had to look up when it was. And no, I’m not telling you that to be cool. I’m not cool. I’m just old. But Khanate were my prevailing memory of that evening, the singular bleakness and scathe that they wrought, and while I’ve seen the component members of the band in other projects since, there was no question that their performing together under the Khanate banner for the first time in reportedly 19 years was one of the most crucial opportunities Roadburn 2024 provided. There’s a reason they were the first band announced for the fest. It was a big fucking deal.

Their surprise 2023 album, To Be Cruel (review here), underscored the aural black hole they’ve always been. It wasn’t about reinventing their approach so much as about being brave enough to try to make those awful sounds again. Understand: Khanate stand at the end point of music, extreme enough in their mission and end result that nothing but hyperbole can rightly apply. Save for O’Malley tuning between songs, they offered no moments of respite or safe pockets in which to dwell. No cathartic release. They stood close together on stage under stark spotlights. No video screen. Nothing to distract you from the punishment on offer. The only flourish around O’Malley’s glacial riffs and Plotkin’s coinciding rumble was the caustic feedback either of their own or of Dubin’s making with his sampler, noisebox, or whatever the fuck it was. No rescue came. No melody. No letup. “Kick a helpless thing,” and the crowd was the helpless thing. If it was arthouse, it was the moldy basement underneath that smells like rotting meat and no one knows why.

At the Hall of Fame, Full Earth would play nearly the entirety of their own set during Khanate’s. Not a conflict of note for most here, I would think. I did abscond up there to try to see them at least for a few minutes, but the line was out the door — classic Roadburn Khanate (Photo by JJ Koczan)indication that you’re not getting in — and yeah, I’ve got a pass, but I figured all was well, I was glad a whole bunch of other people would get to the show even if I didn’t, and hightailed it back to the 013. Gotta get your steps in. I’m pretty sure Khanate were still playing the same song when I got back. No summer here either. Lonely day at Roadburn? Fuck you, here’s shit-coated obliteration instead.

And maybe I was done when they were. A long, long time ago and talking about another band, I told a guy I knew that it wasn’t about the notes they were playing, or the notes they were not playing, but about the spaces in between. That’s truer of Khanate than it was of that other band, and with Khanate, even those tense, empty spaces feel like fingernails on the eyeballs. Thusly bled, I walked back down the row of bars around the corner from the 013 — it has a name, who can remember? — and watched humans having dance parties, talking with friends, drinking, laughing, living. Cognitive dissonance to the fact that the world just ended.

Or didn’t, since there’s still another day of Roadburn tomorrow. See you then, and thanks for reading in the meantime. More pics after the jump.

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Roadburn Festival 2024: Chelsea Wolfe, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Hexvessel, Lankum, Cloakroom and Many More Added

Posted in Whathaveyou on October 24th, 2023 by JJ Koczan

Here be the second announcement from Roadburn 2024. The first one, made just over three weeks ago, brought skin-crawl legends Khanate as the first confirmtion, and really — I’m just being honest here — that was probably enough. Yeah, one band for a festival that’s like 10 days long now or something is probably a little light in terms of a general bill. But Khanate, you get one whole day to see them play three songs and then like five or six days to recover while you meander Tilburg in a stupor. Perfect plan.

This, along with irrelevance, poor networking skills and a general lack of utility, is perhaps a fraction of why I don’t book Roadburn. The groundbreaking Netherlands-based festival continues to push boundaries in their annual celebration of progressively-defined heavy. 2024 will make half a decade since I was last there — which I’ll tell you flat out is longer than I ever in my life wanted to again go, and while we’re honest I’m a little sad about it — but I carry a decade-plus of vivid and wonderful memories of the precise sort that I know those fortunate enough to witness it in 2024 will be making.

The lineup announcement came through the PR wire:

Roadburn Festival 2024 poster David Fitt art

Roadburn announces first names for 2024 including The Jesus and Mary Chain, Chelsea Wolfe, Lankum and clipping.

Having already announced KHANATE for the 2024 edition of the festival, Roadburn has today made its first broader line up announcement, including THE JESUS AND MARY CHAIN, CHELSEA WOLFE, LANKUM, and CLIPPING. Roadburn 2024 will take place between 18-21 April in Tilburg, The Netherlands.

Roadburn’s artistic director, Walter Hoeijmakers, comments:

“With this announcement, we are diving straight into the heart of what Roadburn 2024 is about. These artists that we are proud to unveil today are all of great significance for what the festival has become in recent times. We feel these artists represent the broad scope of Roadburn. With the first of the commissioned music projects also being revealed, we are as always, looking firmly into the future as well, presenting entirely new music. This is the start of many great things to come.”

It’s simply not possible to capture the true essence of THE JESUS AND MARY CHAIN within a few words. They are a band who have made such an impact on the world within which Roadburn operates, their legend feels outsized, too large to fully comprehend. The Jesus and Mary Chain offer up a heady blend of fuzz and melody as a transportation device; whisking us a way to a different time and place of rose-tinted romance, wistful existentialism and just the right dose of hedonism.

Alongside the announcement of a new CHELSEA WOLFE album, we’re thrilled to reveal plans for her return to mainland Europe – at Roadburn 2024. In the twelve years since her first Roadburn appearance, this already remarkable artist has blossomed into an unstoppable force. As a songwriter and consummate creative entity incorporating evocative songwriting and unparalleled artistic vision, Chelsea Wolfe wraps the entire package in an ethereal, shimmering bow.

To witness LANKUM live is an intimate experience – no matter the size of the room. The four Irish musicians on stage play a dizzying array of instruments between them and possess a deep understanding of traditional folk, an appreciation of heaviness and deft hand for putting a twist on what has gone before them in the folk genre.

Experimental hip hop trio CLIPPING will make their Roadburn debut in 2024. A force to be reckoned with in the live arena, their minimalist onstage aesthetic belies the sonic complexities that they effuse. Experimenting with confrontation and heaviness within hip hop is part of what makes Clipping so exciting, and to our ears, makes them a band that belongs at the heart of what we do at Roadburn.

The first commissioned performance of 2024 to be announced will be crafted by the hand of MAT MCNERNEY. Music for Gloaming: A Nocturne by the Hexvessel Folk Assembly will be an entirely original composition, written and performed exclusively at Roadburn 2024. Evoking night-time mysticism, a realm where daylight bows to advancing darkness, unraveling both the external twilight tapestry and the internal landscapes of memory and thought, this commissioned work promises to be something truly special.

Additionally, HEXVESSEL will perform their latest album, Polar Veil in full at Roadburn 2024. On this striking release, a majestic shroud of black metal grandiosity is overlaid upon heaving doom and psychedelic flourishes that capture what is at the heart of Hexvessel.

Los Angeles based ecstatic black metal group, AGRICULTURE, will make their European debut at Roadburn, flying in for an exclusive one-off performance.

Mysterious Dutch black metal band, FLUISTERAARS will play their second ever show – their first in mainland Europe – at Roadburn, showcasing what has made them such an integral part of the underground black metal scene for so many years.

CLOAKROOM will bring their particular take on interplanetary exploration to Tilburg, playing tracks from their latest album, Dissolution Wave and more.

With the promise of a new album on the horizon, melancholic black metallers DÖDSRIT will return to Roadburn this coming April.

Delivering a dose of bloodsoaked blasphemy, DEVIL MASTER will make their Roadburn debut, traveling from Philadelphia to bring their malevolent magick to the masses.

The artwork for Roadburn 2024 has been unveiled; a striking video created by French artist, David Fitt is available to view in full via the Roadburn website. This extraordinarily talented French artist has been on our radar for some time now, and we had the great honour of hosting an exhibition of his portraits at Roadburn 2023. From there our appreciation for his work blossomed into a creative relationship that has resulted in the work that we’re thrilled to present to represent the 2024 edition of the festival.

4-day tickets for Roadburn 2024 are now on sale. Other ticket options – including single day tickets and accommodation – will follow on November 3. More artists will be announced in the coming weeks. For all information including tickets, please visit

Hexvessel, Polar Veil

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Roadburn 2020: David Eugene Edwards to Play Solo Acoustic Set; PH, Elizabeth Colour Wheel, The Flenser Showase & Much More Added

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 14th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

roadburn 2020 new banner

David Eugene Edwards. Solo. Acoustic. Every year I’ve been fortunate enough to go, there’s been one keeps-you-alive-until-April Roadburn set, from Saint Vitus with Wino in 2009 and Garcia Plays Kyuss in 2010 to Sleep playing Sleep’s Holy Mountain this year. There’s always one. At least. In 2020, for me, that’s David Eugene Edwards of Wovenhand and 16 Horsepower playing by himself on stage. Whatever else gets added, whoever else is playing, hell, even if Wovenhand end up playing, this is the one that got me. Well done, Roadburn 2020.

Also featured in this massive lineup addition are PH (whose announcement I wrote), Elizabeth Colour Wheel, familiar faces Primitive Man and a host of other, of course widely varied, incarnations of badassery. I’m not trying to take away from anyone else or anything like that, or anything that might still come by saying the above, you understand. Roadburn 2020’s already primed to push well beyond the common bounds of heavy. It was before this announcement, frankly. But from here on in, my schedule already has its circle, and whether we do the Weirdo Canyon Dispatch or not (every year I kind of wait for the shoe to drop on that like it’s something we’ve been getting away with for the last six editions), I’m there, and I don’t care who he’s up against or who’s on next on what stage. If I have to sleep in the gutter of Weirdo Canyon in order to be there, I’m not missing a minute of David Eugene Edwards‘ set. Period.

From the fest:

roadburn 2020 david eugene edwards

Roadburn 2020: new announcements, more curator picks, and a showcase!

– Less than 10% of 4 day tickets remain
– David Eugene Edwards joins Emma Ruth Rundle’s curated event
– James Kent picks a special collaboration for his curation
– The Flenser will present a label showcase

Less than 10% of 4-day tickets remain for Roadburn 2020, and single-day tickets will go on sale on December 10.

Artistic Director, Walter Hoeijmakers comments: “As we edge closer towards selling out Roadburn 2020, I am excited that we still have so much more to announce. This year we are putting an emphasis on the context and creativity of the artists we’re announcing and knowing that we have still more up our sleeves means I am delighted to see where Roadburn 2020 is heading.”


At Roadburn, David Eugene Edwards has graced us with his presence on two occasions as part of Wovenhand. Each performance pulsated with energy and elevated the sets to be highlights of each respective edition of the festival – in no small part due to David’s electrifying presence. We’re delighted to bring him back to Roadburn, this time as part of Emma Ruth Rundle’s curation, The Gilded Cage. David will perform an acoustic, solo set that promises to showcase the diversity of his delivery and the nuances of his craft. Emma comments:

“It’s been a secret wish to see DEE playing solo and delivering his songs in their most bare forms. This was the very first thing that came to mind when I was asked to co-curate Roadburn and it’s going to be a rare and precious jewel of a performance.”

A product of the burgeoning French underground scene that has produced so much incredible music in the past few years, over the course of two records so far, Regarde Les Hommes Tomber have used scraps from the most sinister subgenres, from black metal to sludge to build up truly frightening epics. Always apocalyptic in feeling, emotional and ruthless in equal measures, drenched in religious imagery and references, and creating a sonic depiction of the fall of mankind… and its subsequent rising to replace the cruelty of the established gods. Not only will we be expecting all of this maelstrom of fiery feelings, but also a healthy measure of the unexpected as well, since Regarde Les Hommes Tomber will be playing their new not-quite-announced-yet album in its entirety.

Regarde Les Hommes Tomber will join forces with Hangman’s Chair for a collaboration at Roadburn 2020. Hellish, sludgy black metal will clash horns-first with cold, despondent doom, and the result will surely transcend even the most delirious of descriptions that we can come up with at this point. Originally commissioned by Red Bull, this unholy collaboration has occurred just once previously, in Paris. That performance lasted 45 minutes, but for Roadburn an additional 15 minutes of material will be debuted just for us.

Plebeian Grandstand are a band that have morphed from a core of quite technical, hardcore charged metal to be the hulking beast of black metal fury we see before us today. The creative journey they have been on has led to an infusion of influences from outside the black metal sphere, resulting in nuance and depth that can sometimes be hard to find within the genre. On top of that, they eschew the cartoonish elements of extreme black metal – you’ll find no burning churches here – in favour of something rooted more firmly in reality. After all, what’s more nightmarish than the real world?

With a calculated sense of tension and just enough human touch to cut through their own cold post-punk atmospheres, Virginia’s True Body has built a following with their urgent and impassioned music. Instead of falling into melodramatic excess or disconnected affectations, the band manages to bring the best of each realm for something that leaves audiences rapt and thrilled. With this masterful take on such a beloved sound, we’re honored to announce that True Body will be performing at Roadburn 2020 as part of James Kent’s curation.

In 2020, The Flenser will celebrate the tenth anniversary of the label’s first release. The San Francisco based label has been committed to releasing experimental, avant-garde music for a whole decade – which – naturally – has not escaped our notice here at Roadburn HQ. To celebrate this milestone and to acknowledge the impact that The Flenser has had on our record collections and the broader musical landscape we have invited several of the label’s current artists to perform at Roadburn 2020.

The Flenser label manager, Jonathan Tuite comments: “Roadburn is my absolute favorite festival in the world. The lineup is always diverse, the audience enthusiastic, and the curation is second to none. I can’t think of a more appropriate place for The Flenser to celebrate our ten years of existence.”

For over ten years Dan Barrett has been cementing his role as a visionary in dark music history.Perhaps none of this work has resonated with more intimacy than Giles Corey, his acoustic guitar led, ghost noise-soaked songwriting vessel. While on paper an acoustic led-project sounds like a potentially low-key affair, Giles Corey is bursting with electric energy–recordings are awash in swirling organs, reverberating choirs, striking horns, and blown out drums. While Giles Corey has performed as a solo-act, Roadburn 2020 will mark the project’s first appearance as a full-band. Members of Have a Nice Life, including central figure Tim Macuga, will help bring the album’s haunted sounds to life: expect the stage and audience to be left in a scorched earth state of desolation.

“Otherworldly” is a description often applied to artists that evoke the ethereal, and whilst that is occasionally applicable to Elizabeth Colour Wheel, the otherworldliness they invoke is more to do with the fact that it’s not always clear if they really inhabit the same world as we do. Their debut album, Nocebo, laughs in the face of genre descriptors, forging a new path that may be tricky to describe but that offers a wildly enticing prospect.

Drowse is an outlet for Kyle Bates to explore his place in the world; his music echoes what he experiences on the varied paths of this internal-reflection. Sometimes those paths lead to extraordinary places – this year’s Light Mirror LP was inspired by an isolated trip to northern Iceland where he took up an artistic residency in 2018. The melancholic results are the sonic equivalent of a sliver of sunlight permeating an otherwise bleak and drizzly morning. The weight of Bates’ reflections is mighty, but it never quite succeeds in suffocating the shards of harmonious hope that glint in the winter sun.

Mamaleek have been unearthing truly uncategorizable sounds from the catacombs of black metal since 2008. Founded by two anonymous brothers, the Bay Area project has become known for both its wild experimentation and aesthetic cohesion. The use of left-field samples threads their discography together, with sound sources growing more bizarre with each release. The current lineup mixes childhood friends and total strangers. Their participation is an outgrowth of the core duo, an experiment in a live setting, using instruments and sounds that highlight experimentation and flout genre conventions. Who knows how long this iteration will last before the next metamorphosis.

As a multi-instrumentalist, Madeline Johnson AKA Midwife has sculpted a fuzzy take on experimental dream pop, drenched in melody and punctuated with distortion. Despite a central theme of “devastation” Midwife makes for nuanced and evocative easy listening that can’t help but feel like something of an audio honey trap. We’ll have to wait until April to find out exactly what lurks beneath the surface…


It is with great anticipation that we’re delighted to announce that Primitive Man will be playing twice at Roadburn. One set will be a business-as-usual, throat-ripping, bone crushing display of what makes them a must-watch band. And one set will be a run through of their 2017 album, Caustic. This is the kind of endurance test we relish – an audio pummelling so intense that there’s no way to come out the other side without a shift in our worldview.

When The Livelong Day – the latest offering from Dublin four piece, Lankum – passed over our desks, our ears pricked up and we knew we had to invite them to Roadburn next year. It’s not uncommon to find us feeling effusive about noise, drone and ambient projects in the Roadburn world, but it’s a much rarer prospect to find such tonal qualities on what is undoubtedly, most definitely a folk album. Uilleann pipes and harmonium come together to create a cinematic soundscape that many Roadburners will feel right at home with. The album makes for an appropriate gateway for those attending Roadburn, regardless of which side you’re approaching from – a folk fan heading towards darker territories, or a heavy music fan lured by the promise of a genre steeped in history and countless traditional flourishes.

Hilary Woods wrote her debut full length, Colt, alone – before before taking her recordings to Berlin to work with James Kelly (Wife, Altar of Plagues). The solitude is palpable, and listening to what she has made feels like a cautious invitation into a quiet place that she has created. Imagine a soft cocoon of sound, enveloping you as you step through into the netherworld of her making.

Spearheading Chile’s vibrant psych scene, Föllakzoid will transport Roadburn 2020 on an all-encompassing voyage. Joined once again by German electronic artist and producer, Atom TM, the band will make their Roadburn debut, aiming to, “modulate the gravitational waves in order to alter the temporality perception and get sucked into the timeless space continuum,” as guitarist/singer Domingæ Garcia-Huidobro aptly puts it.

Rhetoric Of The Image showcases Torpor’s confidence; lengthy post-metal tracks smoulder whilst shorter, more experimental cuts punctuate the album. The three piece will expand a little for Roadburn in order to do justice to the full fifty one minutes that make up Rhetoric Of The Image as they perform it in full for us at Roadburn.

The current incarnation of Sum of R already sees Reto teamed up with Jukka Rämänen (Dark Buddha Rising, Hexvessel, Waste Of Space Orchestra), which has allowed them to forge even more adventurous paths from their dark ambient/drone of yore, but now yet another figure from that particular Finnish scene will be adding his own very particular twist to the proceedings and giving them a new voice, quite literally, as it is none other than vocalist Marko Neuman (Dark Buddha Rising, Waste Of Space Orchestra, Convocation, Ural Umbo).

Earlier this year, PH released Osiris Hayden, their second offering through Svart Records and fifth overall in their prolific decade together. Their latest work finds them embracing new reaches of the cosmic infinite, taking on electronic charge as they never have before and exploring the connection between organic and inorganic audio experiences.

Those of you familiar with Ethan McCarthy will know him as the formidable frontman for Primitive Man. Under the banner of Many Blessings, Ethan performs a much less frenzied kind of music – and yet somehow it manages to be no less disturbing and spine-chilling. Many Blessings has seeped into our consciousness – a slow, creeping threat of sonic menace. Whilst the ferocity we are are perhaps more accustomed to is not present, the wordless missives are brooding and visceral.

After listening to their blistering debut album Context, and considering the fact that guitarist Spencer Hazard was already roped in for Roadburn 2020 as a member of one of our artists in residence, the wonderful Full Of Hell, how could we ever pass on Eye Flys? The Backslider rhythm section of Jake Smith – here on guitar and vocals – and Patrick Forrest plus Triac’s Kevin Bernsten complete the line-up.


Weekend tickets for Roadburn are on sale now (3-day tickets are sold out, 4-day tickets remain on sale). Single day tickets will be on sale on December 10. More information about tickets and accommodation options can be found HERE.

Already announced for Roadburn 2020 is: Emma Ruth Rundle and James Kent as curators, commissioned projects from James Kent & Johannes Persson, Jo Quail, and Vile Creature & Bismuth, the return of Julie Christmas, Red Sparowes, Russian Circles, Torche, Brutus, Bada, Dool, Health, Hide, She Past Away, and two Artists In Residence: Full of Hell and Lingua Ignota. Check the full line up HERE.


Roadburn has been nominated in the best small festival category (less than 10,000 visitors) at the European Festival Awards 2019. Votes can be cast HERE. Votes and spreading the word are appreciated as it would be a huge honour for us to win such recognition.

David Eugene Edwards, “Straw Foot”

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