To celebrate the fortieth birthday of the band, Siglo XX is playing a very limited number of exclusive reunion concerts. Het Depot is therefore proud to host during this edition of Breaking Barriers the only Belgian concert of these legendary Limburgians.
Siglo XX originate in the mining region and the name is, as befits a punk band, taken from a mine in Bolivia rattled by strikes at the time. During thirteen years Siglo XX built up a cult reputation with songs creating an atmosphere so dark even Joy Division sounds airy and cheerful in comparison. After all these years, everybody's finally getting a unique chance to see them live on stage once more.
The Cravats is one of those many underground bands with a cult status that almost inevatibly goes with a lack of worldwide hits. During live concerts The Cravats are irresistible and compelling. The band combines a tight bass, a punky guitar and a nervous drum with a chaotic saxophone balancing on the edge of jazz and a convincing voice. The excentricity of this band is not a gimmick, it's authentic and creative.
The output of the band is as unpredictable as their song structures. In the heydays of punk they released a lot of music on legendary labels as Crass Records or Small Wonder Records, only to stay clear from recording studios for the next decades. Now, for the first time in their 41-year lifespan, they are coming to Belgium to present their new album, 'Dustbin of Sound'.
Theatre of Hate
Theatre of Hate are veterans of the alternative scene that have only rarely played in Belgium the past decades. Luckily, this is about to change. The set will certainly feature the old classics, but the band will also give a lot of attention to the new album, 'Kinshi', which was in 2016 the first release with new material in more than thirty years.
During live concerts, the sound of Theatre of Hate is still defined by Kirk Brandon's clear voice, the simultaneously free-floating and agressive guitar and the indispensable saxophone that turns everything into a coherent entity. This is a band that built their own audience free of compromise or commercial concessions. It's punk, but without exaggerated posturing. It's postpunk, but without artistic pretense. It's protest songs, but without plain slogans. It's musical talent, but without boring solo's. It's the perfect finale for the second day of the festival, no buts.
For a Belgian audience, it's really rather pointless introducing The Kids. They haven't released any new material for many years, but live this legendary band plays a tight and uninterrupted series of punk classics that never sound dated. It's incomprehensible the band has never enjoyed the international success of contemporaries like The Ramones, Sham 69 or The Damned, because these modest Belgians are really second to none. This is and remains the perfect band for those who want their music to sound uncomplicated and raw.
The fact TV Smith is still mainly associated with The Adverts, the punk band that landed a spot in the UK charts in 1977, is not really justifiable. Since the demise of the Adverts, the man has released eight solo albums on which he proves he can create relevant lyrics and catchy melodies. Even with nothing but an acoustic guitar, he manages to have more energy than an ensemble of ten.
TV Smith lives for his concerts and there isn't a spot on the planet where he feels more at home than on a stage. Totally committed he dives into his extensive catalogue, alternating between his solo career and the legendary hits of his old band. He's currently working on a new album, but it hasn't been confirmed yet whether it will be available in November.
A concert promotor with a tight schedule is better off being watchfull, because an unchecked Smith will play for hours, without any breaks. When he eventually, completely exhausted and sweating, seeks out his ever-present merchandising stall to talk for hours with whoever feels like it, the people in the audience can only ask themselves one question. How is it possible TV Smith is not a worldwide star?
Cocaine Piss, a young band that grew up in the squats and radical action groups of the Belgian city of Luik, is rapidly becoming a staple of the Belgian alternative scene. Their noise punk, or whatever one wants to call it, was impressive enough to convince Steve Albini to produce their second album. The result is a serving of energetic chaos they know to deliver convincingly on any stage.
Last year, Cocaine Piss played in the foyer of Het Depot, but during Breaking Barriers they get their well-deserved spot on the main stage.
Millie Manders & The Shut-Up
In Belgium, Millie Manders is still completely unknown, but she's a remarkably talented and versatile singer whose songs gradually start to attract the online attention of a broader audience. With her band, she creates a mix of angry punk, danceable ska and the urban sounds of the present generation. They are not limited to the predictable guitar and bass, but even use a horn section and even a ukulele. The result sounds contemporary and original, without ever forgetting where the rebellious attitude comes from.
Every alternative festival should provide chances for young local talent. New Trash consists of three local youth who are circling the age of consent and who have made a determined choice for punk. They don't have an extensive catalogue yet, but they play every song with conviction and that's what it's all about. Their only release up to date is the EP 'Circle', released in 2017. It sounds like the budget was 3,18 euro and that's how it should be.