Progressive and pro-active London-based Loop Collective is back with a barnstorming rhythm-heavy festival later this month with a two-day event running 28-29 September in and around the Forge in Camden and Vortex in Dalston. Building on the success of previous festivals programmed by the Loop Collective, Upload is a multi-platform festival featuring a hugely diverse programme of new projects based from within and around the Loop Collective.
Performances will range from 20 drummers playing on Dalston's Gillett Square, and a club night featuring boundary-pushing African music, to a specially commissioned large ensemble bringing together some of Europe’s most forward thinking improvisers and composers. True to its name, the festival will extend into the digital universe with performances being instantly made available at www.loopcollective.org website in a variety of mediums.
Friday’s portion of the festival will take place at the highly conducive Forge in Camden Town. The line-up will feature a wide variety of music including forthright saxophonist Tom Challenger’s (pictured above left) contemporary brass outfit Brass Mask; a new electro-acoustic duo featuring imaginative trumpeter Rory Simmons and vibes star Jim Hart; and an explosive percussion trio of Dave Smith, John Blease and Ben Bryant.
Saturday’s events move over to Dalston to centre around Gillett Square and one of the UK’s most cutting edge venues: The Vortex Jazz Club. In the early afternoon, 20 drummers (and drum kits) will convene on Gillett Square and perform a one-off piece of music, featuring some of the finest drummers/percussionists in the UK and promises to be one of the loudest ever music events since Andy Sheppard’s Saxophone Massive blasted there at its launch in 2006.
Throughout the afternoon, the festival will feature a number of surprise pop-up acts and intimate performances around the square. The Vortex Jazz Club then hosts an evening of cutting edge improvisation and composition; featuring two duos (including the mesmerising collaboration between Seb Rochford and Kit Downes) and culminating with specially commissioned large ensemble Cats Cradle made up of Loop members and some of their closest musical collaborators.
The festival will close out with a radical late night club session kicking off at 11pm featuring the fantastically warped vocal-and-baritone-sax-led trio Snack Family; Senegalese/dub/funk trail blazers Fofoulah, and genre defying DJ organisation Sound-Species. The Upload festival follows on from the critical and creative success of previous Loop festivals whose first edition in early 2009, at the Vortex Jazz Club, was followed in 2010 and 2011 by events that showcased the international collaborations of its members while promoting the best of London's contemporary jazz. This year's Upload will emulate the immediacy of improvised/composed music – not only to the immediate local community – but also to a global audience via streaming, recording and filming of events. And in a late addition to the festival students/NUS card holders will get 50% discount on the door in both venues, and the Vortex are also offering 50% off Budvar and house wines.
For more info go to www.loopcollective.org
– Mike Flynn