It's That Wonderful Time of Year Again: Eurosonic Noorderslag – [PIAS] Proudly Presents Naima Joris, Kai Kwasi, The Lounge Society, Ladaniva, QUINQUIS, and Prins S. en De Geit
Previous, legendary [PIAS] showcases at Eurosonic Noorderslag include (amongst many others!) first performances from Soulwax, Vitalic, Editors, Agnes Obel, Crystal Fighters, Balthazar, and Arlo Parks, to name a few. It’s no secret that we here at [PIAS] love the annual ESNS showcase festival in Groningen, the Netherlands. Our year is always kickstarted in the best way possible with our trip to Holland to exhibit our new talent in front of leading bookers, promoters, agents, and media. Finding, discovering, and nurturing new talent is where we thrive, and when we love a new artist, we want to tell the world. Simple. So, while we’re sad that beloved Eurosonic is not physically taking place this year, we live in full hope that come 2023, we can do our favourite thing again.
Having said that, you should most definitely check out the online Eurosonic showcase festival that kicks off on January 19th – we specifically want to bring your attention to our 6 artists performing this year: Belgium’s Naima Joris ([PIAS] Recordings Belgium), the UK’s Kai Kwasi (Play It Again Sam) and The Lounge Society (Speedy Wunderground), French artist QUINQUIS (Mute), Armenian/French group Ladaniva (Le Label), and Prins S. en De Geit ([PIAS] Recordings) who hail from the Netherlands.
Read on to find out why these artists are not to be missed, as well as when and how you can catch each of their performances, from anywhere in the world, no ticket needed.
Don’t say we didn’t tell you first: Naima Joris, Kai Kwasi, The Lounge Society, Ladaniva, QUINQUIS, and Prins S. en De Geit.
WED JAN 19TH | ESNS 03 | 20:20 – 20:30 CET | EUROSONIC
Naima Joris only sang her first songs when she was 27 and after several collaborations as a backing vocalist with, among others, Isbells and Raymond van het Groenewoud, she was asked as a guest singer by her father Chris Joris (accompanied by Sal Larocca and Free Desmyter) to further discover her voice as lead singer. In 2020 she released her first solo single ‘Bellybutton’, with her debut EP following last year. The collection is just five songs, pure and reduced to the essence – dark, intense tracks that try to process the pain and sorrow of losing someone that you love.
WED JAN 19TH | ESNS 03 | 23:10 – 23:20 | EUROSONIC
Kai Kwasi’s honeyed tones and deeply personal lyricism enable him to create a lane for himself, which feels as close to Joni Mitchel as it does Frank Ocean. Influenced by a variety of sounds from Highlife and Bossa nova to RnB, Soul, and UK rap, Kai’s diverse references have shaped a musicality unique only to Kai’s upbringing – equal parts Indie, Jazz, RnB, LoFi, and Bedroom Pop. Growing up in South-East London, his Mum was a street dancer and his Dad was a rapper, with his musical exposure an intersection of their tastes alongside his Grandmother’s, everything from Mary J. Blige, Kano, and Jay Z to Otis Redding and Drummers of Burundi.
In terms of other artists, Kanye to Hiatus Kaiyote, Frank Ocean to Headie One, Kano to Moses Sumney – my music library’s really hectic. To people who have never heard your music before, which track/video of yours would you suggest they start off with and why? My debut single ‘unt’. The video was co-directed with my friend Clay Milner Russel, we worked together throughout the process but he really made it happen. We looked at a lot of Franck Lebon's videos for reference, Czech One, Creeping, etc. That’s the kinda level we want to be working at eventually.
THE LOUNGE SOCIETY
THU JAN 20TH | ESNS 02 | 21:30 – 21:40 | EUROSONIC
“Our lyrics are a call-to-arms for people who share our dismay at the dismal future being carved out for people like us. We want each line to be a brick through the window of just the right people. There is an anger in the lyrics because we are angry, but we are angry at how fucked the world has become,” says the band who hails from the Pennine towns of Hebden Bridge and Todmorden in the Calder Valley of West Yorkshire, UK. This is the sound of young England: articulate, enraged, and energised. And – perhaps crucially – highly danceable too. It should give hope to anyone who has lost faith in the future because here the future is in safe hands.
THU JAN 20TH | ESNS 01 | 22:40 – 22:55 | EUROSONIC
Ladaniva is a multicultural group founded in 2019 by Armenian singer Jacqueline Baghdasaryan and French multi-instrumentalist Louis Thomas. Resolutely danceable, the group blends fresh touches of Armenian folk with traditional melodies and rhythms from elsewhere (maloya, reggae, Balkan, African, Arabic…) to create music that is modern and dynamic while being steeped in history and tradition. Ladaniva’s profile grew considerably after the release of videos for ‘Vay Aman’ and ‘Kef Chilini’.
FRI JAN 21ST | ESNS 03 | 20:50 – 21:00 | EUROSONIC
Émilie Tiersen (née Quinquis) went back to her roots in Breton culture. The French artist made two albums as Tiny Feet and is now, with the release of SEIM, her debut for Mute, known by her Breton name QUINQUIS. She connected with producer Gareth Jones (Liars, Depeche Mode, Apparat) who offered to play some synths but their partnership grew into something more. The resulting album merges sparse electronics, immersive atmospherics, and deft melodies, all of which are carried by Émilie’s tender yet quietly soaring vocals.
Some would say it’s music you’d put on movies…
Some would swear it’s music for devastated souls on their way to get healed…
Some would have no ideas what to say about it…
Some would try to explain they don’t get it but they feel it…
Some would admit they keep discovering hidden parts of me while listening to it...
Some wouldn’t have heard it yet…
Some wouldn’t answer that question, yet they would probably be the most interesting ones. Who/what would you regard as the 3 biggest influences to your music? My biggest influence could be an imaginary concept that would involve Elizabeth Fraser, Anne Clark, and Björk singing the Barzaz Breiz. To people who have never heard your music before, which track/video of yours would you suggest they start off with and why? I would definitely recommend 'Adkrog'. First, "adkrog" means "start again" in the Breton language so it would be a great start to have a fresh look on what I’m doing at the moment. The track is full of textures that I love and that we can hear throughout the whole upcoming album. Finally, this song really is about what I play music for and where it comes from. It’s all about going from the darkness to the light. A simple path which I think we should all dedicate our lives to.
PRINS S. EN DE GEIT
SAT JAN 22ND | ESNS 03 | 22:30 – 22:45 | NOORDERSLAG
The Hague electro sensation – made up of charismatic and dyspeptic frontman-poet Scott Beekhuizen (aka Prins S.), composer-producer and guitarist Marne Miesen, and ‘electro-connaisseur’ Daniel Ortgiess – Prins S. and De Geit (Prince S. and the Goat) mixes uplifting, raw dance beats and amusing Dutch lyrics. In August 2021, the trio released their wonderful, at times hilarious second single ‘Kinderboerderij (Keiblij)’ with another fantastic video. The witty cover of ‘God Is A DJ’ (Faithless) further underlines their talent.
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⇥ Proudly Presenting: The Lounge Society