BBC Radio 3's Late Junction announces first ever festival
I first discovered Late Junction in my teens. It was like tuning into a familiar but alternative reality, where I suddenly had access to mysterious, experimental and intriguing music from all origins & erasGazelle Twin
The festival will showcase the breadth of the programme’s ear-expanding output, across two days of live music.
With fans ranging from Toby Jones and Stewart Lee to Shirley Collins and Floating Points, Late Junction - broadcast between 11pm and 12.30am, Tuesday through Thursday nights on BBC Radio 3 and BBC Sounds - was first conceived as an eclectic accompaniment to "late-night pottering".
Embracing music that doesn’t fit easily in any category, taking in the parts of jazz, world, classical, electronics and field recordings that other programmes don’t reach, the programme’s experimental spirit has become synonymous with the musical vanguard, trailblazing the way for the underground to find a home within the mainstream.
The Late Junction Festival will bring the radio programme to life with performances from across the sonic spectrum. Headlining the first night will be electronic artist Gazelle Twin, who channels the darkness of the English pysche in a costume which is half court jester, half football hooligan. She’s joined by Richard Dawson's band Hen Ogledd, who bring together a discombobulating mix of psych-pop, medieval lore and harp improvisation and the Lynchian sound of Chaines, a Manchester based electro-acoustic composer.
On the second night cult pioneers This Is Not This Heat top the bill lead by Charles Hayward and Charles Bullen. They follow the enigmatic Curl, the performance collective, label and community founded by Mica Levi and Coby Sey and O Yama O, the musical project formed by London-based musicians Rie Nakajima and Keiko Yamamoto who explore sonic intimacy through the folk traditions of Japan. The festival will also feature exciting live versions of the programme’s monthly Collaboration Session, with artists from different bands forming ad-hoc ensembles, plus a live Late Junction Mixtape for the gathered audience.
Whether it’s a session with a cement mixer courtesy of Krautrock band faUSt, a mechano orchestra improvisation by Pierre Bastien or a celebrated mixtape from Riuchi Sakamoto, each episode of Late Junction is as joyfully unpredictable as the next. Late Junction has given subversive artists like Kate Tempest, Klein, James Holden and Richard Dawson a timely platform, while also hosting recognised pioneers including Thom Yorke, Annette Peacock, Robert Wyatt and Björk.
Boasting a presenter roster that includes Max Reinhardt, Nick Luscombe and Verity Sharp each with their own musical personalities and expertise, Late Junction’s diverse and challenging music selections is an antidote for anyone wanting to expand their ears far, far beyond the influence of algorithms.
Gazelle Twin says: “I first discovered Late Junction in my teens. It was like tuning into a familiar but alternative reality, where I suddenly had access to mysterious, experimental and intriguing music from all origins and eras. It has provided a wealth of inspiration to me ever since.”
The BBC Radio 3 Late Junction Festival is produced by The Barbican in association with Reduced Listening. Recordings from the festival will broadcast on Late Junction from 11pm on 5, 6, 7, 12, 13 and 14 March.
Alan Davey, Controller of BBC Radio 3, says: “On BBC Radio 3 we want to transport listeners to other worlds and provide an oasis of extraordinary music and culture. The first ever BBC Radio 3 Late Junction Festival will be a place to escape during the cold winter days and nights, whether on BBC Sounds, BBC Radio 3 or live in the brand new venue at EartH. My thanks to the Barbican and Reduced Listening for producing it, we can’t wait to share this musical odyssey with audiences everywhere.”
Chris Sharp, Contemporary Music Programmer at the Barbican says: “BBC Radio 3 Late Junction are fellow travellers with a shared artistic interest and inspiration and it is a pleasure to be working with them jointly on what promises to be a great festival and to welcoming back some of our favourite artists.”
Other Late Junction highlights between now and February 2019 include:
- Thom Yorke mixtape, exploring the weirder corners of his record collection (8 November)
- Windrush At 70 collaboration session: Dennis Bovell, Hannah Catherine Jones, Anthony Joseph, Jason Yarde, Hannah Catherine Jones (15 November)
- Terry Riley in concert at Unsound festival, Poland (27 November)
- Stewart Lee presents Late Junction over the Xmas period (25-27 December) with a different guest each night Richard Dawson 25 December, Tim Key 26 December, Laura Cannell 27 December
- Helena Hauff mixtape (3 January)
- Laurie Anderson in interview (28 February)