In a festival landscape where many line-ups are similar to one another, OFF is a bit of a maverick and is somewhere you’re guaranteed to see things you won’t see that easily elsewhere. With this in mind, its close following of the best emerging, and strong relationship with established Polish acts, makes discovery of great Polish music one of its strongest features.
The best of the bunch for me this year is a guitar band inspired by shoegaze, post-punk and psychedelia called Trupa Trupa. Known to me prior to the festival, thanks to a string of great recent single releases in the lead up to their upcoming LP, their Forest stage set at OFF on Sunday night is the first chance I get to see the four-piece, fronted by poet Grzegorz Kwiatkowski, live. And they don’t disappoint. Their tuneful, hypnotic, cathartic, gloomy English language lyricism – words informed by and a visceral reaction to human catastrophe throughout history – is woven with dreamy reverb-laden dual guitars. Underpinned by pounding drums and melodic bass lines, the four-piece are incredibly tight; spell-binding even. Can imagine this set working on a much bigger scale than even the two thousand or so people who’ve gathered before them at OFF. Perhaps one of the main stages at Glastonbury if that festival would be willing to take a punt on these increasingly relevant outsiders.