Culture connects people.
In these times of self-isolation, we need the arts more than ever.
The Botanique concert halls and galleries remain closed for now, but if you can’t come over to us, then we’ll bring the music and visual arts to you.
Starting today, we’ll be updating this page daily with art links we think are worth discovering. We’ll be sharing the best concert footage, livestreams by interesting artists, virtual exhibitions, podcasts delving deeper into the magic of music, content for kids, …
We hope this might help get all of you through this time of hardship. Take care of each other.
Your daily reference for music and visual arts, 'Bota à La Carte', comes to an end this Friday, after almost 3 months of cultural news. We hope it made you feel better, dance and dream during the lockdown days.
The Botanique concert halls remain closed for now, but culture continues to be very much alive. That's why we will share with you on a weekly basis must-sees, must-hears and must-reads in the NEWS tab of our site.
Take care of yourself and your loved ones, until we are able to welcome you again at Botanique.
ASGEIR - Going Home Acoustic Session
Icelandic singer-songwriter Ásgeir Trausti Einarsson, better known as Ásgeir, performed in the Orangerie a few months ago to present his new album 'Bury the moon'. However, this was not his first show at the Botanique. In 2012 he broke all records with the sales of his debut album 'Dýrð í dauðaþögn' in Iceland. The album got an international release two years later, which was accompanied by a release show at the Botanique during Les Nuits 2014. 'Bruxelles Ma Belle' then asked him to bring an acoustic version of his song 'Going Home' in the garden of the Botanique.
Other Lives - opbmusic Live Sessions
Five years after 'Rituals', Other Lives returns with new work in the form of 'For their love': a poetic record about individual and social struggles in turbulent times and their most suggestive and intimate record to date. On the occasion of the new release, Jesse and Kim Tabbisch invite us for a live session from home to perform a few songs from the new album. During Les Nuits, the band will share the stage with Baxter Dury, Louise Verneuil and Robbing Millions.
Mayra Andrade - Colors Show
As a Cape Verdean singer, Mayra Andrade carries the musical legacy of her country with dignity. She was born in Cuba from Cape Verdean parents and grew up in Senegal, Angola, Germany and France. She passionately cherishes her musical legacy and brings songs in Creole with influences from western pop. For her COLORS session she performs her remarkable single 'Tan kalakatan' from 'Manga', her fifth album. The next big thing of southern pop is coming to Brussels during Les Nuits and you certainly don't want to miss it.
To support new talent, France Bleu (Radio France), La Première (RTBF), ICI Musique (Radio-Canada) and Option Musique (RTS) chose a 'Découverte francophone' (French discovery). The winner is none other than the Brussels singer-songwriter Noé Preszow. The four French-language radio stations from Belgium, France, Switzerland and Canada will broadcast his song 'À nous' for at least 2 months for this occasion. Discover him at Les Nuits on 24 September for a unique concert at the Church of Our Lady of Laeken next to Yael Naïm.
Donny Benét pet sounds sessions
Donny Benét, the disco fanatic from Sydney is at first glance a quite comical character. But his music is anything but a joke. He learned to play the accordeon from his father, an old jazz musician. As you can also notice in this 'Pet Sounds Session', he plays most of the instruments himself (mainly synthesizers). In 2011 he made his breakthrough with his debut album 'Don't hold back' and just last week he released his fifth album 'Mr experience'. You can already enjoy his steamy post-ironic grooves during this session. We're getting ready for an unforgettable evening in the Orangerie.
This current crisis can also be the time address issues such as the representation of women in the music sector. This is an issue that SCIVIAS (a project by FWB) is dealing with. Women are still underrepresented across the industry today, both on stage and in managerial positions. There is a lot of documentation out there to gain more knowledge about it. On Arte, for example, you can watch the documentary series "Sex & music", 3 episodes about the place of women in the music industry since the 1950s.
If you want to know more about the women in rock music, you can watch "Haut les filles", a French documentary with well-known French female musicians such as Jeanne Added or Charlotte Gainsbourg. On a different note, the film and documentary "Girlhood" depicts the careers of female artists as a coming of age movie and challenges conceptions of race, gender and class.
If you would rather read a book on the theme, Susan McClary's book "Feminine Endings: Music, Gender, and Sexuality" examines how sexism has infiltrated our music vocabulary, from classical to pop music. There are also plenty of podcasts that cover the subject such as "Yesss" by Anaïs Bourdetpropose, "Quoi de meuf" and "Kiffe ta race" to name just a few. No more excuses for not being informed about current gender discrimination in the sector.
Dana Gavanski live Le Cargo !
Toronto-based musician Dana Gavanski released her first solo EP in 2017. She is currently working on her first album to be released on Full Time Hobby (Jacco Gardner, Katie Von Schleicher, Micah P. Hinson...). With her last two extracts "Catch" and "One By One", Dana offers us a taste of her upcoming album and its delicate folk songs. While waiting for her visit to Botanique, discover the live acoustic session recorded for French webzine Le Cargo.
Bel Jazz Fest
In response to the current crisis, the Belgian jazz world comes together for the Bel Jazz Fest. Eleven established jazz festivals are joining forces for an online two-day festival. No fewer than 24 concerts will be broadcast live from the Flagey building on May 29th and 30th. Almost as if you were attending a real festival, you can switch stages online and chose which artists you want to watch! But don't worry, you can (re)watch all the concerts up to a week after the festival. With a ticket or donation you not only support the artists but also the professionals working for the festival, such as organizers, technicians and suppliers. Belgian jazz lives on and proves to be dynamic, resilient and united.
Ozferti - Set à la maison
Ozferti is the moniker of French beatmaker, musiciah and illustrator Florian Doucet. Call it afrogrime, ethiohop or Nubian bass, Ozferti's music is a rich melting pot of Ethiopian, Eritrean, Nigerian atmospheres mixed with elements of electronic music, jazz, hip-hop and bass. After years of playing in bands like La Chiva Gantiva (Belgium/Colombia) and Terrakota (Angola/Portugal), Florian Doucet began his solo project in 2016 with his first album "Addis Aboumbap" released in May 2016.
On stage, the producer works with animated visuals of machines, guitars and videos and makes his performance an all-round audio-visual and sonic journey. Get a preview and watch his “Set à la maison” (At home set)!
Silly Boy: Blue Basique, les sessions
Ana Benabdelkarim, better known as Silly Boy Blue, mastered the melancholy on her debut EP 'But you will'. During 'Basique, les sessions' she brings two of her own songs and a cover of t.A.T.u.'s 'All the things she said'. During Les Nuits she shares the stage with her compatriots Suzane, The Pirouettes and Alice et moi in the Chapiteau for a French pop night.
BLANCK MASS live stream pt. II
We know Blanck Mass from his innovative electronica that combines brutal influences from hardcore and metal with cinematic soundscapes. On April 4th he organized a second live stream and raised money for the NHS, the British health care system. He was able to raised 500 pounds. You can review the livestream here as a foretaste of Les Nuits.
Jojo: making of good to know
After her debut single 'Leave (get out)' that reached US Billboard Pop number one and two successful albums, some setbacks followed for American singer JoJo. Luckily she was able to get on top of it. In 2016 she came back with a third album and this month the r&b icon released her fourth album 'Good to know'.
JoJo captured everything during the recordings as well. Every Tuesday (starting from April 7th) you could watch a new video on her YouTube channel. Throughout these episodes she takes us to the studio and we discover the whole process behind the making of her album. Watch the last episode here and enjoy a look behind the scenes. See you in the Rotonde for her performance.
Library Session The K.
If you’re already a fan of Ireland’s Girl Band and Bristol’s Idles, you will most definitely love Belgian power rock and noise act The K. They Will present their latest record “Amutate corporate art” in Botanique on September 30th.
They recorded their first Library Session in our Library earlier this year and have proved once again that merging noise rock guitars, pop melodies and energetic stage presence is one of their greatest strengths.
Fenne Lily in stereo session
The 23 year-old Bristolian makes nostalgic, heartfelt indie folk that has already won over the audience. She’s release “Hypochondriac” this year and in this interview, she tells us all about the release of her first album "On hold" for the In Stereo Sessions. We’re very much looking forward to Fenne's performance at Les Nuits 20!
Saint motel Live session
Even semi-acoustically, Saint Motel are able to recreate a vibrant set and to communicate their energy with their audience. See for yourself and watch the live session that was streamed during the release of the video clip of "Van Horn".
Coming back after their big hit "My type” in 2014, they will certainly blow off the roof of the Botanique a second time on September 5 with their euphoric and bouncy pop-rock.
Catastrophe Live Rock en Seine
Catastrophe never wants to do the same thing twice. Born in 2016, the band founded by Pierre, Blandine and Arthur is ready to try everything once — concerts in cabarets, forests or on beaches, summer festivals, or on a song composed with 80 children in Marseille, you name it! Catastrophe shares the same taste for innovation as Kamasi Washington and Aquaserge and their music is a complete kaleidoscope of musical genres.
You can relive their performance during last summer's Rock en Seine festival. They are always looking for something innovative and giving all their energy on stage, so they are definitely not to be missed during Les Nuits.
The Academic - ‘Anything could happen’
In 2018, the four-piece from Ireland released their debut album "Tales from the Backseat". Despite their young age, the band members have already been on tour for several years with famous names like Noel Gallagher, Kodaline and Catfish and the Bottlemen.
In early May they released their new song "Anything could happen" and recorded the music video with their fans. This melodic indie pop song is just what we need to cheer up right now! We look forward to seeing them in our Rotunda this autumn.
#ikluisterbelgisch live 2
After a first edition on April 24, Studio Brussel will again bring #ikluisterbelgisch to your living room on Friday evening, May 15. From 8.30 pm, the channel will stream a whole lot of quality Belgian live acts via Facebook Live.
The line-up is even more extensive than that of the previous edition, with acts like IBE, TheColorGrey, Gestapo Pop Music, Willy Organ, Because Het Kan Soundsystem and Equal Idiots frontman Thibault Christiaensen, who will write a song for one very luck viewer during the show.
On March 27 this year, Basia Bulat released "Are you in love?”. Her fifth record is full of loving folk songs and she plays some of them in this “at home” concert.
Bulat streamed the live set for the Native Women's Shelter of Montreal, meanwhile interacting with fans who responded live and requested songs. The whole set radiates love and gratitude, a wonderful prospect for her concert in Botanique on October 1.
Algiers KEXP Live
You’re probably already familiar with Algiers’ music — their thrilling post-punk and new wave inspired sound with politically charged lyrics, which, thanks to Franklin James Fisher’s unique voice, takes a very powerful form. Some have even labelled it “dystopian soul”.
In February they’d come back to our Rotonde after three years for an impressive performance. If you couldn’t attend their show, you can now watch their KEXP live here:
Haring Live Paradise City Festival 2018
Brussels-based producer Yann Attia makes timeless electronica with influences from House, IDM and techno as Haring. Haring’s universe seems limitless and he gets his cross-border inspiration in travel and life experiences. The Kiosk Radio and Pure FM resident will present his latest album “Blurred” during Les Nuits at Botanique in October.
In the meantime, thanks to BE-AT.TV, you can watch him perform this three-part show on the stage of Paradise City back in 2018.
In the workshop of … Ernest Pignon-Ernest
Ernest Pignon-Ernest is a key artist of last year’s exhibition programme. The exhibition, curated by Roger Pierre Turine, was a huge success and attracted more than 15,000 visitors from December 2018 to February 2019.
Ernest Pignon-Ernest is a French street art pioneer and has been drawing on walls all over the world since the late 1960s. His charcoal drawings are inspired by people’s lives. They address the sociopolitical context in which people, and especially minorities, are often forgotten. For him, every place and location has a unique story, memories and is as important as the work of art itself.
You can watch 'Se torno' (If I return), a documentary by the Italian collective Sikozel. In the film, we follow Ernest Pignon-Ernest on a journey through Italy, towards the home village of Pier Paolo Pasolini, a murdered poet who was a great source of inspiration for Ernest's work. In the documentary we find out whether Pasolini's thinking has left a lasting mark on our collective unconscious. Mind you — this documentary will only be exclusively online for a week.
Easy life - peanut butter
Five-piece indie band Easy Life has only been around for three years but has already achieved worldwide success. The British band from Leicester effortlessly combines rap, pop, hip-hop, jazz and funk with intelligent lyrics without losing their chill.
We're very much looking forward to seeing them play live at Botanique in November! In the meantime, you can watch them perform a lockdown version of “peanut butter”.
Luik Records is a small independent label from Liège (Luik in Dutch) representing artists such as Annabel Lee or ENDZ.
In this carte blanche, a moving and very well-nuanced text, they speak up about the difficult situation the label is going through at the moment. The small structures defending our emerging artists need to be heard more than ever. Let's support them now.
Alice et Moi - 'Je n'ai rien à faire'
French pop artist Alice Et Moi is also getting creative while being stuck a home! She made a remake of her own song and renamed it "Je n'ai rien à faire” (I don't have anything to do). She used images and lyrics from friends and fans that describe the current situation perfectly.The proceeds of her new clip will go entirely to the aid for care providers, researchers and vulnerable people in France. During Les Nuits, you will be able to see Alice Et Moi live in Botanique. We can’t wait either!
LA Priest is Samuel Eastgate’s cosmic pop solo project (you might know him as Sam Dust, ex-member of Late of The Pier). The British artist will release his new record ‘GENE’ next month. ‘GENE’ is named after a brand new modular drum machine that Sam invented and spent two years building (alone!) using 150 homemade electrical circuits.
You’ll be able to see LA Priest live sooner than you think in Le Botanique. Until then, you can watch the video for new single “Beginning” or access the GENE Machine Emulator here.
Glauque is most definitely one of the most up and coming Belgian bands at the moment. They impressed the audience and the pros at Concours Circuit in 2018 with an intense and very unique mix of electronica and rap. Then, they performed at Dour, Les Ardentes and Couleur café in 2019 and released their first EP in 2020.
French music channel Jack invites artists to share their songs during lockdown. Watch now Glauque perform “Vivre”!
The Chats Live Burger Boogaloo
The Chats are this very loud, fun and down to earth punk band from Down Under. In no time they have managed to leave a great impression on fans and music legends such as Iggy Pop, Queens or The Stone Age and Cosmic Psychos. Watch them perfrom at Burger Boogaloo in 2019 as a warm up for their show at Botanique!
Music Europe Day
On Saturday 9 May from 2 pm to midnight, the European Union will present the 'Music Europe Day', a Europavox project. 30 artists from 30 different countries, including Belgian artists Glauque and Blu Samu, will play their songs live from home and discuss how music connects us all. Hosted by French pop star Etienne Daho!The program promises to be a great journey between cities and songs and will be broadcast on various social networks, like our own Facebook-page.
She walks in the footsteps of artists like Eddy De Pretto or Aloïse Sauvage and does modern, playful French pop. She’s able to touch the public with her uninhibited, introspective and poetic writing that speak for her generation. Last year, Roxaane was selected as one of the pop artists of "Les Inouïs du Printemps de Bourges”, France's first national contest for finding new artistic talents.
As an “avant-goût” of her show at Les Nuits, watch her perform at cosy and intimate La Lune des Pirates in Amiens, France.
On October 8 during Les Nuits 2020, she will be on stage in the big Chapiteau alongside Aloïse Sauvage, Hervé and Julien Granel.
Roxaane - La lune des pirates
She walks in the footsteps of artists like Eddy De Pretto or Aloïse Sauvage and does modern, playful French pop. She’s able to touch the public with her uninhibited, introspective and poetic writing that speak for her generation. Last year, Roxaane was selected as one of the pop artists of "Les Inouïs du Printemps de Bourges”, France's first national contest for finding new artistic talents.
As an “avant-goût” of her show at Les Nuits, watch her perform at cosy and intimate La Lune des Pirates in Amiens, France.
On October 8 during Les Nuits 2020, she will be on stage in the big Chapiteau alongside Aloïse Sauvage, Hervé and Julien Granel.
Plaid Boiler Room Sheffield DJ Set
London-based DJ duo Plaid is Ed Handley and Andy Turner, two thirds of former band The Black Dog. They have produced many outstanding pieces and released 16 albums under a handful of different names. Their music is recognisable by the combination of joyful melodies and irregular measures, influenced by both electro from the 80s and techno from Detroit. After having devoted a large part of the 2000s to composing film scores, the duo is back with their tenth album "Polymer" inspired by environmental themes.
While waiting for the live show at Les Nuits you can have a look at their Boiler Room set in Sheffield back in 2018.
Yael Naim Live: "She" in "Le concert des confinés"
On March 22, France 3 broadcast “Renversant! Le concert des confinés” with a live performance by Yael Naim. A dozen other artists, including Tim Dup and Selah Sue, created new duos or trios, quirky covers and a song made for the occasion… while stuck at home! Folk singer Yael Naim took the opportunity to unveil a very intimate version of her title "She" played from her home (obviously).
In the workshop of… MICHEL MAZZONI
This week is dedicated to visual artist Michel Mazzoni, who inaugurated the season in February 2019 with his exhibition "Other things visible".
The artist shares a selection of his favourite musical, literary and visual works, a virtual visit of his exhibition in Le Botanique, and the latest news about his work.
Lola Marsh live @ Paste Studio
Gil Landau and Yael Shoshana Cohen are no longer unknown to Le Botanique. The indie pop-folk duo released their latest album “Someday tomorrow maybe” late January. After performing twice in our rooms, Lola Marsh returns to the Orangerie this fall. Make sure you don’t miss it! In the meantime, if you’re not familiar with their music yet, you can watch them perform four songs from their latest album in the Paste Studio in New York.
Rachael Dadd 'The quay sessions'
During Les Nuits, Botanique welcomes Rachael Dadd. This British lo-fi folk artist spends her time touring Europe and Japan, her husband's homeland. She wrote the song ‘Cut my roots’ about this special relationship. She performed it during ‘The quay sessions’ in January. Dadd's songs are written from her own experiences and food for thought for all who hear them.
Loud & Quiet podcasts
London-based monthly music magazine Loud & Quiet releases new free podcasts and videos every week. You can listen to artists such as Caribou and Baxter Dury in their "Midnight chats".
Like many in the music press industry, the magazine is going through a hard time during the corona crisis and calls on fans to save them. With the purchase of their “Year’s membership subscription” you also get a copy of their exclusive “15 years of Loud And Quiet lockdown zine”.
Music lovers who want and can afford to support a good cause know what to do!
Atome Les Nuits 2019
Over a year ago, Belgian pop band Atome, led by Remy Lebbos (former guitarist of Vismets) and David Picard (former keyboardist of Applause), played at Les Nuits 2019.
Accompanied by singer Coline Wauters, keyboardist Leïla Alev and drummer Jean Prat, Atome shared their delightful and melodic pop songs with the audience.
Something to look forward to at the Les Nuits 2020 edition in October this year!
Matthew Mole 'Honey, I’m home'
Capetonian folk artist Matthew Mole has been quite active during lockdown. To counter the possible boredom, he asked his audience for suggestions of covers and recorded three of them in his home studio. You can see below how he worked on one of the covers. Curious about his own work? Discover the three titles on his EP 'Honey, I'm Home' released on April 19.
La Chica live at the Institut du Monde Arabe
Last year, French-Venezuelian artist La Chica released her debut album "Cambio". In her album, she tackles subjects such as feminism and diversity under an impressive and uplifting collage of textures and electro-pop sounds.
It will be a while before the French-Venezuelan artist comes to visit us. You’ll find her and her mesmerising voice in the Rotonde on February 25th. In the meantime, you can enjoy her live show recorded at the Institut du Monde Arabe in Paris here:
Sarah Espour: Seras-tu là - Michel Berger (cover)
Sarah Espour made live sessions from home “before it got cool”. In October, she composed and wrote this song. The artist does isn’t sitting idly during this lockdown either. Espour performed in Botanique last year and we expect to share her new work with you soon. Stay tuned for more and in the meantime, enjoy this video with imagery just as dreamy as her vocals.
Making a video clip during a lockdown? Aloïse Sauvage proves it’s not impossible. The French hip-hop artist dances on her rooftop while singing "Méga down", from her new album "Dévorantes".
Perhaps you did not know the 27-year-old artist as a musician, but rather as an actress from, among others, "120 Battements par minute". But Sauvage's talent doesn't stop there. In addition to making music and acting, she also writes, dances and even practices circus arts. It is difficult to put a label on her work, and we’d much rather just let you discover Aloïse Sauvage on your own, during Les Nuits 2020.
L Devine URL tour
If you can achieve what L Devine has already achieved at the age of 22, you can call yourself successful to say the least. With two EPs, tens of millions of streams and collaborations with Rudimental and Icona Pop in her portfolio, the young artist has everything to make it. And she plans to.
Instead of her planned tour supporting Fletcher, she announced on March 15 that she would be doing her tour not IRL but URL, entirely online. She streamed her performances via Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and TikTok, and the final show is on YouTube.
Fortunately, you will soon find L Devine back on stage, with her new single 'Don't say it’.
Home Cooked live stream music festival
The longer we are in collective confinement, the more artists perform in livestream festivals, something we can only applaud. This Saturday evening, tune in for Home Cooked. Nine indie bands from Brussels join forces for an exclusive (free!) live show, from 6 pm in your living room!
In the workshop of… Peter Downsbrough
In our series “In the workshop of…” we visit our most recent exhibitions through the eyes of the artists who made them. We also share virtual tours, anecdotes and fun content for the kids. This Wednesday we visit the workshop of Peter Downsbrough.
Last June, Peter Downsbrough took over Botanique's museum, gallery and lobby as part of his OVERLAP/S exhibition.
Whether in an urban environment, in a museum, in photography, on the pages of a book or a postcard, Peter Downsbrough shapes the space. Recognizable by their own artistic vocabulary, mainly composed of lines, tubes and words, Peter Downsbrough's sculptures invite the viewer to move and question their positioning.
Botakids: Peter Dowsnbrough little workshop
In just a few years producer Willem Ardui and rapper Jay Walker made it to the top of national hip-hop with blackwave. After several projects, they released their debut album "Are we still dreaming" last year, full of their characteristic mix of hip-hop à la The Roots and Mos Def, and jazzy funk, thanks to their live band.
After successful shows at Werchter and Pukkelpop, in the AB and a sold-out Trix, they will return to the Botanique during Les Nuits. In the meantime you can enjoy their Fiftyfifty session!
Library Session Glass Museum
In 2018 Glass Museum released their first album "Deux". Somewhere between BadBadNotGood and Nils Frahm, the Belgian duo mixes drums and piano to perfection.
You can discover them on October 7th during Les Nuits. In the meantime, you can enjoy their Library Session where the band unveils their song "Abyss" for the release of their new album.
Frustration Live Festival Rock en Seine
More than 15 years ago, Frustration released their first EP. Since then, the band has been dictating the law in the French post-punk scene. 3 years ago, they invaded the Orangerie for an electric evening. Their new album 'So Cold Streams' has become a delicate balancing act, combining the classic sound of the post-punks with more engaged lyrics and a close bond with coldwave mythology than ever before. Their latest record “So Cold Streams'” is quite a feat, balancing their classic sound with lyrics that show more engagement than ever, and links to the cold wave mythology.
We will have to wait a while for their performance on November 6th, but you can get a taste of what’s to come with their live performance at the Rock en Seine festival in 2017.
Bandcamp to waive its cut of sales again!
More than ever, artists need support due to this pandemic. Last month Bandcamp announced that all generated revenue from purchases on the 20th of March would go to the artists. This was a huge success, raising 4.3 million dollars that went directly to the artists and their label.
After this great success, Bandcamp are planning to do it again. On Friday May 1st, all generated revenue from the purchases made will again be passed on to the artists. They will continue to do this on the first Friday of the next three months (June 5th and July 3rd). This is the perfect opportunity to support your favourite artists during these difficult times.
Pianist, producer and singer-songwriter Tim Dup implements contemporary influences in French chanson. Despite his young age, Dup writes mature lyrics that he supports with fragile piano. This is the perfect recipe for fascinating and surprising performances.
At this TEDx event, the artist talks about his musical journey, his inspirations, his obligations and the doubts he became attached to in the realization of his various projects.
The video unfortunately only has French subtitles, but in this second video the musician demonstrates what he can do with a limited amount of material and a fantastic voice during a home session. For now quarantined at home, but in December live on our Orangerie stage.
Purity Ring live at KEXP
Purity Ring is the synthpop project of Canadians Corin Roddick and Megan James. They distinguish themselves by innocent singing and the sharp contrast with disturbing lyrics.
Five years after "Another eternity" and collaborations with Katy Perry, Soulja Boy and Lady Gaga, the group releases "Womb". This big comeback also includes a promising show at Botanique! Until then, you can enjoy Purity Ring's live performance for KEXP in 2015.
Blossoms @ Reading Festival 2019
Indie rock band Blossoms is arguably Manchester's favourite young group. Tom Ogden's band captured a top spot on BBC's Sound Of new music list in 2016, and they have been an integral part of the British music scene ever since. Tickets to their shows invariably sell out in a pinch, even just in minutes for their full UK tour last year.
Last summer they were the life of the party at numerous festivals with fantastic sets, such as this one at the Reading Festival.
Printemps de Bourges ‘YellockdownProject’
Earlier this week, we reported that Le Printemps de Bourges is going virtual, with their ‘Printemps imaginaire’. Brussels duo YellowStraps was listed in this year's original line-up, with the support of Botanique. But the set is now being replaced by a series of online videos, under the name "YellockdownProject". The fifth video is ‘Face’, the result of a virtual collaboration with Lord Esperanza.
This Friday, Studio Brussel hosts a live concert via their Facebook page. 15 artists, including Blackwave., Netsky and Selah Sue, are bringing a safe set from a distance for #ikluisterbelgisch (the Flemish variant of #PlayLocal), starting at 8:30 PM.
#PlayLocal – Curated by Le Botanique (playlist)
We mentioned before that we are big fans of the #PlayLocal initiative, and that we want to support all artists in our country. To add to that, we created a new playlist for the “100 % made in Belgium” project by Sabam: ‘#PlayLocal – Curated by Le Botanique’. Check it out on Spotify or on Deezer.
Make sure you check out our previous playlists, curated by all of our colleagues: Radio Lokaal, another playlist full of Belgian talent, and Radio Quarantine, full of Belgian and international talents (which we updated just now!).
Yung Lean, Bladee & White Armor - KEXP Full Performance
It has been clear for some time that Benjamin Reichwald has talent. The Swedish rapper, who became known under the stage name Bladee, is a member of hip-hop collective Drain Gang and has previously worked closely with Yung Lean (for whose group he also designs clothing). In 2016 he released his debut album "Eversince" and in 2018 his second album "Red Light", both under Stockholm's label YEAR0001.
In this 2014 live performance you can see him work with Yung Lean and White Armor, but on October 18, you have the opportunity to see Bladee solo in Botanique.
Katie Gately Live & I Speak Music
Four years after the release of her first album ‘Color’, Katie Gately is back with ‘Loom’, a record dedicated to her late mother. During countless sleepless nights she wrote songs that combine experimental sounds with accessible reassuring emotions. From this album, she plays some songs live from the studio, and in the fall Katie will perform a full show in Botanique.
Connoisseurs will also enjoy this panel discussion in which Katie, together with Doseone, SK Shlomo and Lyra Pramuk, not only discuss the vision they have in different ways of manipulating the voice as an instrument, but also demonstrate how this manifests in their own compositions.
Squarepusher - Detroit People Mover
Last week, the official video of ‘Detroit People Mover’ was released, produced by Jacob Hurwitz-Goodman. The song is part of Squarepusher's most recent record ‘Be Up A Hello’ and returns to his original sound. But it can hardly be called "same old same old". Squarepusher manages to be as authentic as ever.
The uncomfortable atmosphere of Detroit's empty streets in late March perfectly reflects the song's sound, although it was written before the outbreak of the corona crisis in the US. The video contrasts sharply with the busy street scenes from the clip of ‘Terminal Slam’, which was shot less than three months earlier. In this way they form a perfect visualization of an extraordinary time.
Program change expo
Two exhibitions were supposed to start at Botanique this May. In our Museum, artist duo Stephan Balleux and Cédric Dambrain were going to present BOUNCE, a mix of both artists’ media, images and sounds. In our Gallery, Elise Peroi was going to present the result of her research into the relationship between space and habitat, with a focus on gardens. Both exhibitions have been postponed to May 2021.
In anticipation of your visit next year, the artists wanted to send you some visual messages.
I’m sharing a small piece of 36 by 43 centimetres that I made last week. It’s an aquarelle intervention on an architectural document.
Through a radical movement operation what appears on the outside can be found within.
In a current situation of social isolation that forces us to stay inside as much as possible, it’s a poetic invitation to the outside. #staysafe
- Stephan Balleux
The week before the lockdown, I collected the freshly cut grass from the gardeners at the Botanical Gardens for the upcoming spring.
During this period, I try to work with materials from the garden, which makes me want to invent my own garden to gather my creations.
Some of the carpets/plots that would have been used for this exhibition have now been hung up, like this piece, ‘Parcelle latente’, which can be used in different ways.
- Elise Peroi
The #CultureTogether initiative gives us the chance to experience culture together during these difficult times. The project introduces a different Belgian cultural organisation every day, allowing us to look behind the scenes.
Last week, Grégory Thirion, our exhibition curator, was the project's central guest. Check out this video to see what he had to say about Botanique!
Bota Kids: 'Partir, au-delà des frontières'
Participants in the Rush to Art workshops made their own animated movie for the PIXath animation festival. The group of kids, all aged between 6 and 15, created a stop-motion film about a family trying to escape the chaos of war.
The story is inspired by the book ‘Partir, au-delà des frontières’ by Francesca Sanna.
Printemps de Bourges: un printemps imaginaire
No stages, no tents, no beer, … no problem for Printemps de Bourges! The festival has instead been moved online, with artists having been given carte blanche to create whatever they want.
The festival organizers have been sharing these creations on their website and social media since yesterday, with the festival running until Sunday. The organizers and artists invite you to dream and travel into imagination from your own home.
Botanique Library Session: ÂA
There are artists who seem to have it all. Belgian-Congolese rapper ÂA is one of those artists: after working as a visual artist and a writer, he's now focusing on creating a musical career in which he combines all of his talents. In both French and Lingala, he tells you the stories of his world, and of the world he creates.
Earlier this year he visited us for one of our Library Sessions, and during Les Nuits you can get lost in his world during his set as part of the night with Lujipeka.
Margaret Glaspy 'The Full Session' 909 The Bridge
4 years after her debut album ‘Emotions & Math’, Margaret Glaspy returned at the end of last month with follow-up ‘Devotion’. On her new record, the American singer-songwriter translates her personal growth into a musical evolution: guitars make way for a more electronic focus, without losing any of her music’s personality. And more than ever, her versatile voice remains the centerpiece of every song.
Check out her performance at 90.9 The Bridge from a couple of years ago, and then discover her progression for yourself when she visits our Witloof Bar this autumn.
Pomme Petit Concert at Sourdoreille
Pomme creates some of the best pop-folk coming out of France. Despite her young age, she's been rising through the music world at an incredible pace, ever since performing as support act for Benjamin Biolay, Coeur de Pirate, Ben Mazué and Asaf Avidan, among others. Last year saw the release of 'les failles', Pomme's second album that only solidifies her status as a rising star.
This autumn, Pomme will be performing twice at Botanique. Her show at the Rotonde has been sold out for quite some time now, as was her evening at Les Nuits. However, a limited amount of tickets for that performance at Les Nuits has become available again, so hurry before they're gone! For now, you can enjoy her Petit Concert at Sourdoreille.
Pottery live at Paste Studio ATL
Being forced to stay inside gets tiring after a while. Luckily, Pottery is here to get you moving! The Canadians’ mix of rock ‘n’ roll and post-punk will surely have you dancing in no time.
Their latest EP ‘Hot Like Jungle’ released last week, full of upbeat bangers that burst with frenetic energy. Check out their live session in the Paste Studio, and bring your dancing shoes to Botanique in September for their show in the Witloof Bar!
Juicy FiftyFifty Session
Why should a band limit themselves to just playing live version of their songs at one of their shows? That seems to be the mantra that Sasha Vovk and Julie Rens, or JUICY, live by. The duo challenges themselves to create something unique with every concert, combining acoustic and electronic elements.
At Les Nuits, JUICY will be presenting their most ambitious project thus far: an acoustic set with 14 strings and flutes. For now, you can watch them perform at the Atomium: just the two of them, but no less special.
Real Estate “Quarantour”
We miss welcoming you into our concert halls. And clearly you all miss the live music, the beers, and the fun. As we are stuck indoors for quite some time, indie rock masters Real Estate went looking for the next best thing. That is why they created the Quarantour-app! The Augmented Reality app makes a concert hall out of your own living room, or any other isolation space of your choosing, with Real Estate performing just for you.
So don’t worry about arriving on time for the show: it starts whenever you are ready. Click here to bring Real Estate into your home!
Starting out as half of iconic French duo Air, and continuing as a solo artist, Nicolas Godin has enjoyed an incredible career in music. However, he has never forgotten about his first love: architecture. That is why Nicolas decided to combine both of his passions earlier this year with his new album ‘Concrete & glass’, a record devoted to the beauty and diversity of the infrastructure all around us.
Last month, Nicolas got to share his breezy, stylish and elegant electro-pop songs at the Musée d’Orsay, a unique location for unique music.
We’re also sharing his latest video, made for the album’s title track, which shows the remarkable contrast between the beauty of architecture and the void left behind by the absence of people in the streets due to the current crisis.
Disq - Social Distance Party
What would a mix of Weezer, Pavement and Snail Mail sound like? Well, probably something like Disq. These five guys from Wisconsin mix past and current influences into timeless indie rock. Stereogum are big fans, praising the band for their amazing, garage punk-inspired hooks, and their sharp, Elliott Smith-like songwriting.
The band will be presenting their debut album ‘Collector’, which released last month’ at Botanique in the autumn. For now, you can enjoy a teaser with this livestream concert by singer Isaac for the Social Distance Party project.
Lord Esperanza - Dans le Club
As if the French hip-hop scene isn’t bursting with talent already, it now has yet another talented prodigy in Lord Esperanza. Despite only being 23 years old, the rapper from Paris already has a vast discography, with a number of great solo EP’s as well as work with Lux, Nelick and Roméo Elvis.
Last year, he dropped his first full-length album ‘Drapeau blanc’, a collab with beatmaker Majeur-Mineur, which he’ll be presenting at the new Les Nuits. If you’re impatient to check out the Lord’s introspective rhymes, then have a look at this Dans le Club show.
It’s been quite the ride for Kiana Ledé so far. The next big thing in r&b finally had her breakthrough with last year’s incredible ‘EX’. But it wasn’t that long ago that things were looking decidedly bleaker. After she moved from Philly to LA with barely any money on her, with dreams of pursuing a career in music, she quickly got dropped by her first label.
In MTV’s ‘Kiana Ledé’s Make-or-Break Moment: A Solo Headlining Tour’ we get to see how the singer kept working hard, and succeeded in making the entire US bounce to her music.
Be sure to check out her video for new single ‘Chocolate.’, which she made with Ari Lennox (via video chat!) during the lockdown.
Zed Yun Pavarotti - Îles
There’s a lot of ambition to everything Zed Yun Pavarotti does. France’s answer to Post Malone mixes his cloud rap with dreamy beats and a typical French surrealism, but also uses influences like Johnny Cash, Famous Dex and A$AP Rocky to create a sound that’s more international than most French hip hop.
New single ‘Îles’ proves yet again how melancholic and addictive his sound is. The video for the song was made during the lockdown and is… definitely a Zed Yun Pavarotti project. It’s also an ideal break away from the daily worries, so just take a moment to chill out and listen.
Broken Record podcast
Who here is old enough to remember excitedly reading the liner notes when a new album was released? The guys from the Broken Record podcast miss those days, as they feel that because music is consumed digitally nowadays, an important part of the conversation between an artist and their audience is lost.
Their podcast wants to kick-start those discussions, by giving interesting insights into the creative processes of artists like Alicia Keys, Run the Jewels, Rufus Wainwright and David Byrne, among many others. With legendary producer Rick Rubin as one of the interviewers, this podcast is a must-listen for any music fan!
In the workshop of… Emmanuel Van der Auwera
This week, we return to The Sky is on Fire, Emmanuel Van der Auwera’s video-sculpture which was on display at Botanique in the autumn of 2019.
Emmanuel Van der Auwera’s installations challenge the audience’s sense of criticism, and make them question the abundance of images and their mass distribution by the media in the digital age.
We invite you to meet the artist in this video, in which he looks back at The Sky is on Fire and at The Death of K9-CIGO, his other visual art piece that was simultaneously on display at his own gallery, Harlan Levey Projects.
Bota Kids: Emmanuel Van der Auwera's little workshop
You can download ‘Emmanuel Van der Auwera's little workshop’ in French or in Dutch. It’s a booklet filled with creative games, which help you to discover this artist’s exciting world in a playful way!
At Bozar in Brussels, you can find the centre for the Royal Belgian Film Archives: CINEMATEK. The centre hosts one of the most important film collections in the world, and, as a film museum and movie theatre, aims to help movies be experienced as they should: together, and on a big screen.
Obviously, trips to the cinema aren’t allowed right now due to the current crisis. That’s why CINEMATEK started a fun new project: every Thursday afternoon at 15h, silent movies are live streamed on their Facebook page, accompanied by live piano music. It’s a unique way to see movies that are almost a century old come back to life.
Having already streamed some Charlie Chaplin movies, this week sees the organization stream two Belgian movies, ‘Combat de boxe’ and ‘Monsieur Fantômas’. Don’t miss it!
Botanique Library Session: Under the Reefs Orchestra
In this fifth week of social distancing, we keep looking for new ways to keep ourselves occupied. To that end, we're bringing our Library Sessions back! Under the Reefs Orchestra kick us off with their rhythmic and pure melodies that bloom on both edges of the borders between jazz and alternative rock.
The Belgian collective originally formed for Les Nuits 2017, and the power trio will be back at our festival this year, as part of the Capitane Label Night on October 1st.
Last week, we already mentioned how deeply the current crisis is affecting Belgian artists. We joined the #PlayLocal campaign by releasing our own playlist, Radio Lokaal.
To give the country’s artists an extra boost, the Stream!t organization has released its own playlist, full of excellent music by local talents.
Ane Brun - Leave Me Breathless
We love having Ane Brun perform at Botanique. It’s impossible for us not to be huge fans of this Scandinavian indie folk angel. With her unique voice and incredible presence, she makes music full of warm arrangements that evokes an enchanting melancholy. The Norwegian singer reminds us of Neko Case or Feist, but to be honest, she’s far beyond any comparison.
She is releasing her new album later this year, and will be presenting it in Brussels. Until then, you can enjoy her ‘Leave Me Breathless’ concert in the Oslo Spektrum Arena, where she plays a number of her favourite covers of songs by Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Nick Cave, Tom Petty and many others.
And be sure to watch the official video for her latest single ‘Trust’, in which she connects with fans all over the world, affected by the crisis in their own individual ways, in an online chatroom.
In ‘LDN’ we dive head-first into the London grime and rap scene. Director Nathan Miller knows the scene and the city like the back of his hand, allowing the documentary to give us a unique view into the world of artists like Youngs Teflon, Jevon and Morgan Keys.
Miller creates an exciting mix of live footage and behind-the-scenes conversations, settling the film into a melodious rhythm. The interviews give us interesting insight into a diverse world that has become a vital piece of London’s cultural history.
daMusic - daFestival
Us Belgians are blessed with an incredible diversity when it comes to music journalism. And during these hard times, the media cares about our music industry. That’s why daMusic has set up daFestival, an online showcase with well-known and upcoming artists.
The Antler King, Styrofoam, de portables and BARST are just a few of the bands who will play a half hour set from their own living rooms. So get those beers out of the fridge to create that festival vibe in your own place, daMusic will provide the music.
Marina Satti - KEXP
Who knew that the next Rosalía would be found in Greece? Marina Satti is immensely popular in her own country and in Bulgaria, and the rest of the world will surely follow. She mixes the influences from her background and her training in jazz with electro-pop, Middle Eastern vibes and more international influences. Add her own à Cappella polyphonic choir Fonés to the mix, and you can see how she creates a completely unique sound.
Her shows at Eurosonic and Printemps De Bourges were very impressive, just like her performance at Les Nuits will be later this year. For now, you can watch her set at KEXP. Get ready for something you’ve never heard before!
Hansa Studios: By the Wall 1976-90
David Bowie, U2, Iggy Pop, Depeche Mode and Nick Cave: these are just a few of the incredible musicians who recorded some of their best music in the Hansa Studios in Berlin. Only a stone’s throw away from the Berlin Wall, the legendary studios transformed from the biggest German hit machine into a creative home for stars from across the world. In 1990 the studios closed their doors for the last time.
In the documentary ‘Hansa Studios: By the Wall 1976-90’, Mike Christie holds conversations with a big number of musicians who played there, trying to find out what made the place as magical as it was. You can watch the trailer below, and you can find the documentary on vrt.nu for free.
During pop music’s long history, there have been many stories about its biggest stars’ behaviour. For every musician who behaves impeccably, there’s another one who causes havoc. The Disgraceland podcast takes a loot at stories about famous musicians who went too far. Every episode is an interesting mix of true crime and music history.
Already on season 5, Disgraceland has an impressive back catalogue with stories about Jay-Z, Madonna, Iggy Pop, A$ap Rocky and many more.
Dinos - Solidays Scène RADAR
‘Taciturne’, French rapper Dinos’ latest album, was released last January. It proves once again how powerful the former Rap Contenders mc’s mix of street rap, poetry and melancholy really is.
Check his incredible flow here with this performance at Solidays' Scène RADAR and get ready for an incredible show when he visits Les Nuits!
Sprung podcast - Erika de Casier
Sprung is the official international podcast for the renowned Primavera Sound Festival. It’s described as “serious music fans talking music unseriously”, with presenters Ben Cardew, Mark Dix and Johann Wald talking to international musical guests every week. In this case, they’re having a conversation with Danish singer Erika de Casier, or “the modern Sade”, about a Hyperdub compilation that can only be found on a Sega Genesis cartridge. Don’t miss Erika’s show during her night with BABii and S10 at Les Nuits!
Halehan - 'Home' (live from my window)
‘Selfless Dreams’, Halehan’s latest EP, was released last month. It’s another step in the new direction the singer from Brussels has taken since single ‘Kind of Blue’, leaving behind his creative and personal comfort zone. Both lyrically and musically, the EP is quite a change from debut ‘Temple of Maia’, thanks to its strong hip-hop and synth-pop vibes.
Due to the current health situation, Halehan decided to release a special video for his song ‘Home’. In it, he plays the song live from his window, which has been incorporated in a drawing by Vinco Zierowan. Halehan will be introducing his new music at Botanique later this year, with both a set for adults and one for the kids.
One World: Together at Home
The World Health Organisation (WHO) and Global Citizen have decided to collaborate and set up a COVID-19 benefit on Saturday night, with support from Lady Gaga. ‘One world: together at home’ will be streamed on Facebook, Instagram, Twitch, Twitter and YouTube, among other channels. BBC One will air the show the next day.
Talk show hosts Jimmy Kimmel, Stephen Colbert and Jimmy Fallon will be your guides through the night, with a little help from some characters from Sesame Street. The guestlist is impressive so far: Alanis Morissette, Andrea Bocelli, Billie Eilish, Billie Joe Armstrong, Burna Boy, Chris Martin, David Beckham, Eddie Vedder, Elton John, FINNEAS, Idris and Sabrina Elba, J Balvin, John Legend, Kacey Musgraves, Keith Urban, Kerry Washington, Lang Lang, Lizzo, Maluma, Paul McCartney, Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Shah Rukh Khan and Stevie Wonder have already confirmed their appearance.
IN THE WORKSHOP OF ... BALTHASAR BURKHARD
This week, we return to the Balthasar Burkhard exhibition at Botanique, which offered a retrospective of the artist's complete works.
Burkhard played an important role in the 70's introducing photography to the world of contemporary art. Our exhibition was a broad inventory of works that showed how the Swiss artist saw the world, full of concern, but full of poetry as well.
We introduce you to Grégory Thirion, the exhibition's curator, who provides some insightful information. You can also visit the exhibition virtually.
BOTA KIDS: BALTHASAR BURKHARD'S LITTLE WORKSHOP
It's difficult not to sit down silently and enjoy the wonder of Hania Rani's incredible piano music. She creates wordless stories, full of delicate, warm beauty. Finding inspiration in the time she spends in both Berlin and Warsaw, her songs take you on journeys to far off places that feel both like home and unworldly.
With her sound, she follows in the footsteps of artists like Jóhann Jóhannsson and Hauschka, while she says her main inspirations are Nils Frahm, Ravel and Radiohead.
Take a seat and enjoy her performance at last year's Eurosonic Festival and the incredible video for her song 'F Major', in which talented director Neels Castillon captures the beauty of her sound through gorgeous imagery.
Justice - Mix With the Masters
Mix With the Masters offers online courses allowing you to learn about every step along the way to making music. These courses are taught by big names from the music business, from producers and sound technicians to artists themselves (like Hans Zimmer, among others).
Usually, the courses are filmed in professional studios, but the health crisis has put a stop to that. Luckily, the website offers webinars as well, to further help you in your musical education.
Tonight, French electro duo Justice offer a free webinar (in English) in which they'll talk about their production techniques and philosophy and will answer questions from the audience. The webinar starts at 21h. Read more about it in this article (in French), or create an account directly on the Mix With the Masters website.
Real Estate - Paste Studio NYC
To fans of dreamy indie rock, Real Estate is practically royalty. They’ve been the front runners of the genre for over a decade now. 3 years after the release of their last album, they returned with ‘The main thing’ earlier this year. It’s a record that sees the band looking to expand upon their sound.
To celebrate the album’s release, Paste Magazine invited the band to its studio to play a couple of songs. An ideal appetizer for Real Estate’s concert at Botanique later this year!
Alice et Moi - Le Concert Privé Europe 1
France is bursting with young and talented female singers, as you’ll discover at Les Nuits. On the night of Suzane’s concert, you’ll want to check out Alice et Moi, an electro-pop artist who is just about to make it big. Songs like ‘Filme-moi’ and ‘J’veux sortir avec un rappeur’ are all lush productions, with a slight retro sound and eclectic influences.
She’ll be releasing her debut album later this year, but you can already discover her here with this concert video from her show at Europe 1. Put on that cap and dance away!
Jawhar - Live on KEXP
It doesn't happen often that a Belgian artist gets to play a live session for KEXP, but Jawhar was lucky to receive that honour. During the leading showcase festival Stransmusicales in Rennes, he got to play a short set in La Chapelle. Mixing Tunisian, his mother tongue, with Arabic, Italian and French, he creates his own poetry, drenched in beautiful melancholy.
Discover for yourself how he brings it to life with his delicate, whispery voice, with more than a few hints to Nick Drake.
PANTHA DU PRINCE PRESENTS 'THE TRIAD' BOILER ROOM BERLIN LIVE SET
What would techno for introverts sound like? Well, somewhat like Pantha Du Prince’s sound. He combines elements from techno, house, minimal and noise with sounds from nature, giving his music an organic soul. His beautifully sculpted soundscapes invite you to sit down and listen, rather than partying wildly.
He’ll be presenting last month’s ‘Conference of Trees’ at Botanique later this year. Right now, you can discover how he brought his last record ‘The Triad’ to life at the Boiler Room in Berlin.
CHAPELIER FOU - BALÉLÉC FESTIVAL
When you listen to Chapelier Fou’s music, you enter a fantastical new world. You’re bathed in warmth and nostalgia through a mix of idm and classical strings, with the music taking its time to blossom. It’s a listening experience that rewards patience, as you can discover on ‘Le Triangle des Bermudes’, the Hatter’s latest and most creative album to date.
If you want to escape from the maddening world we live in right now, come with us to the fairytale universe of Chapelier Fou, and watch his performance at Balélec. An ideal appetizer for the adventure that awaits during his show at Botanique!
SONG EXPLODER: CARIBOU - 'HOME'
In short, Song Exploder is a podcast in which artists deconstruct one of their own songs to explain how it was created. But it's much more than this: it allows artists to let their music come alive in a way you haven't heard before. The New York Times is one of many to call it "essential listening" for music lovers. Fleetwood Mac, Metallica, Lorde and Carly Rae Jepsen are only a few of the over 150 interesting guests that have been on the podcast.
We picked out the episode with Caribou for you. In it, he talks about the song 'Home', from the recently released 'Suddenly', and about how he had to conquer his creative uncertainty to figure out the final track.
Festival 'Je Reste à La Maison'
Les Nuits Botanique is just one of many festivals in spring to have been postponed or cancelled, both here and abroad. To support their community in these times, professionals from the music industry have decided to organize a festival on the internet.
The ‘I Stay at Home’ Festival has started on Wednesday and continues until April 7th on Facebook. Artists play sets from their own homes via livestream. In the afternoon there are some shows for children, and from 5 o’clock it’s time for the grown-ups to party.
Over 90 artists have already joined the initiative, including Yael Naim, Isaac Delusion, Tim Dup, Victor Solf, Julien Granel and Sages Comme des Sauvages. Click on this link to check out the daily line-up and watch the concerts. Put on your best dancing shoes and enjoy!
Nicolas Michaux - Volta Bruxelles 2017
Despite writing mostly in French, his music is rich in international influences. Because no matter what the language is, Nicolas Michaux's writing is all about taking risks.
In his first album ‘À la vie, à la mort’, composed on the island of Samsø in Denmark, he navigates between languages and eras, juxtaposing rock-psych ballads and new-wave rhythms.
Nicolas reminds us of both Mac DeMarco and Frànçois & The Atlas Mountains and will be presenting his new album at Les Nuits 2020 during the Capitane Label Night. In the meantime, you can enjoy his concert at Volta from 2017.
Hervé - Si bien du mal (Clip spécial confinement)
Hervé uses music to bare his soul. Using influences from chanson, rap and electronic music, he creates introspective songs which none the less are perfect for some fun dancing.
It’s an ideal combination for these times of social distancing, and the singer-songwriter proves it with the video for his new single ‘Si bien du mal’. It was recorded in his kitchen, during his own self-quarantine, and in it he shows you how to make something as mundane as cooking a whole lot of fun.
Put on those slippers and dance along!
Botanique supports all Belgian musical talents, all of whom have been hit hard by the current situation.
That’s why we’re joining the #PlayLocal initiative. We’re proud to share our new playlist Radio Lokaal, which is full of our favourite local artists. Who knows, maybe your next favourite artist is among them?
cabane - "a document"
Thomas Jean Henri has been an ever-present in the music industry. After his time as Soy Un Caballo he worked with artists like Stromae. Because of his busy schedule, he was in need of a place to find some peace, his own "cabane". Taking the term as his new artist name, he's been working since 2015 on an intense, intimate indie-folk record, with a matching photo and video project.
The album, featuring Kate Stables (This is the Kit) and Bonnie 'Prince' Billy, was released earlier this year, to great critical acclaim both in Belgium and abroad. Just before the release, cabane recorded a documentary in which he asks his guests what they thought of the album... before they'd even heard it.
Benjamin Schoos - Botanique 2017
As head of the Freaksville label and musician alongside Lio, Laetitia Sadier (Stereolab), Damo Suzuki (CAN) and Chrissie Hynde (The Pretenders), Benjamin Schoos has a very busy life. However, he's also an incredible singer, with a penchant for French chanson.
Schoos has the talent to use his voice in a huge array of ways, allowing his shows to become something between concerts and performances. He'll be returning to Botanique later this year, but for now you can have a listen to the last time he paid us a visit, back in 2017.
In the workshop of ... Sébastien Bonin
Every Wednesday, Bota à la Carte offers you some new visual discoveries!
In our series ‘In the workshop of…’, we visit our most recent exhibitions through the eyes of the artists who created them. We’ll also be sharing virtual tours, anecdotes and fun content for the kids.
This week, we meet up with Sébastien Bonin.
“Sébastien Bonin is a poet who rarely expresses himself unambiguously, who mocks the syntax and semantics, but who pays tribute to the long tradition of poetry. He does not care about the supposed rules of painting. Indifferent to the convulsive striving for originality, he unabashedly and consciously draws from the history of art and culture.” – Charlotte Friling, DOCUMENTI, 2019 (exhibition text)
Bota Kids: Sébastien Bonin's little workshop
Niklas Paschburg - Eurosonic Festival 2019
Niklas Paschburg is another artist in search of the boundaries of his art. Just like Nils Frahm and Kiasmos among others, he creates cinematic soundscapes by combining the gentleness of his neo-classical piano with electronic music.
He’ll be hypnotizing the Botanique audience in the autumn, but for now, you can enjoy his concert in the New Church in Groningen from last year, when he played the venue during the Eurosonic Noorderslag festival.
JFDR - Live on KEXP
Iceland has been a source of achingly beautiful music for years now. Of Monsters and Men, Ásgeir and Sigur Rós are just some of the big names to come from the island, and JFDR looks set to join that impressive list sooner rather than later.
Even Björk, the country’s most legendary artist and JFDR’s biggest source of inspiration, is a big fan of hers. Earlier this month, she released her second album ‘New dreams’, on which she combines classical, folk and electronics to wonderful effect yet again.
Check out her concert at KEXP, sit back, and enjoy.
Smashing Pumpkins - Botanique 1998
Botanique has been the stage for many legendary concerts throughout the years. In 1998, none other than The Smashing Pumpkins brought their atmospheric alt-rock to our gardens.
Just days before the release of the incredible ‘Adore’, Brussels got to witness a band at the top of its game. ‘Ava Adore’, ‘Tonight Tonight’, ‘Bullet with butterfly wings’, ‘1979’: The Pumpkins brought all of their timeless classics.
Grab a beer from the fridge and let those guitars roar through your living room!
Mikill Pane and Marcel Somerville in conversation with Zebra Katz
Every Wednesday, rapper Mikill Pane and Marcel Somerville (formerly known as Rocky B of Blazin’ Squad fame, nowadays mostly known for his appearance on Love Island) host a talk show on Fubar Radio that they describe as ‘if Woman’s Hour was hijacked by metrosexual guys’.
They have in-depth conversations with interesting guests from the world of music, tv and comedy. Episodes are shared online as podcasts, and right here you can listen to last week’s episode, in which they talk to Zebra Katz about his drastically changed future due to the current pandemic.
Little Dragon - A Colors Show
At the end of last week, Little Dragon released their new album ‘New Me, Same Us’. In celebration of that release, singer Yukimi Nagano was asked to play one of its songs for an exclusive Colors Show. ‘Another Lover’ proves yet again just how catchy the band’s mix of triphop and electro-pop is, as our audience will discover when the band play Botanique in October.
Subbacultcha Quarantine Art Card
Subbacultcha is an organization that aims to bring boundary-pushing artists from Belgium and abroad closer to their audience. With a membership, you get access to the best concerts, parties, exhibitions and more.
Obviously, this pandemic is affecting an organization like this badly. Subbacultcha vows to keep supporting its artists and, for that reason, has launched the Quarantine Art Card. Every Friday, members can discover a new creation online, made by one of the artists in the organization’s network. This includes pictures, artwork, digital concerts,… Physical items will be available for pick-up once this period of quarantine ends, and will provide a great way to return to our normal lives.
Last Friday, it was revealed that the second piece was made by U.S. Girls, an American artist who has played at Botanique on a number of occasions.
If you’re interested in supporting artists through this initiative, click here to subscribe.
Focus Vif: "Aime ton disquaire! (encore plus à cause du coronavirus)"
Last week, the campaign #LoveRecordStores was launched, in an attempt to turn the spotlight on your favourite music stores’ online shops. Big names like Elton John and Paul Weller have already joined the movement. Read more about it in this article by Focus Vif (in French). Don’t forget your indies while doing your online shopping!
JoJo - MTV Unplugged at Home
MTV’s Unplugged concerts have long achieved legendary status. But even an institution like this has to adapt to the strange times we’re living in.
That’s why MTV has launched Unplugged at Home: an acoustic show, from an artist’s own house. Wyclef Jean got the honour of kicking off the series and was followed last week by r&b icon JoJo (who’s playing Botanique in the autumn!). From her own bedroom, she performs hits like ‘Too Little Too Late’ and ‘Small Things’.
Settle down and sing along!
Glauque - 'Vivre'
Belgian quintet Glauque was born where the Sambre and Meuse rivers meet. As one of the country’s most exciting bands, they fuse electronic experiments, boundary-redefining hiphop and the evolution of French chanson into one unique sound. Discover the result for yourself with their debut EP ‘Glauque’, which was released yesterday, or by listening to one of its songs ‘Vivre’ right here. Also, be sure to check out the band's special message.
The band will be introducing the EP at Botanique, as we’ve been able to reschedule their show at Les Nuits! Come and see them on October 6th 2020.
And don’t forget: stay at home, get enough rest, and hopefully, we’ll see each other again soon! <3
SUZANE - Basique, le concert des révélations
Despite Suzane training to be a professional dancer, life had different ideas for her. Her love of dance didn’t disappear but transformed. Now, she moves through her own music in a completely unique way. Her mix of dance and electronic beats, reminiscent of Stromae, made her the most requested artist of the French festival season last year.
If you’d like a preview of what to expect during her performance at Les Nuits (or if you’re just looking for a great show), check her show at Basique right here. You’ll definitely be dancing in your living room!
Romano Nervoso in The Strongroom Bar
There’s no party like a spaghetti-rock party! And there’s no better band to soundtrack it than Romano Nervoso. These party-animals are at it whether they have a reason to be cheerful or not, but as this year sees them celebrating their 10-year anniversary, they’ll be up for it more than ever (including at Botanique!).
They’ve supported Therapy?, Triggerfinger, Band of Skulls and Johnny Hallyday, and if you check out this show at The Strongroom Bar in London, you’ll definitely understand why Johnny was such a big fan. Grab your air guitars and let’s rock!
Even though we’re still working hard (safely, from home!), these times have been weird for us as well. Luckily, there’s always music. Are you curious about which artists are helping us through this tough situation? Or are you just on the look-out for some great new tunes? Check out our Spotify-playlist ‘Radio Quarantine’!
We’ve made an interesting selection, featuring artists from all over the world and from very different genres. We hope some of these songs might touch your heart too.
Smino at Pitchfork Music Festival 2018 in Chicago
Smino’s rise has been incredible. Since releasing his first EP’s and debut album ‘blkswn’, the American mc has been touted as one of the Chicago rap scene’s brightest talents. His melodic hiphop has seen him gain fans all over the world by now. We’ll have to wait until the fall now for his first headline show in Belgium (at Botanique!). In 2018, he got to play a home game at the Pitchfork Music Festival in Chicago. Check out that amazing performance right here!
Aloïse Sauvage : "Les femmes de ma génération sont plus décomplexées" (L'Echo)
Is there anything Aloïse Sauvage can’t do? There seems to be no limit to her talents, as anyone who witnessed her shows at Botanique can attest to. The end of February saw the release of her debut album, the critically acclaimed ‘Dévorantes’.
Last week, L’Echo interviewed her (in French), about her writing process, representation, living as a young woman in the rap scene, and her greatest influences.
MUSICIANS AND BANDS HAVE EARNED 4.3 MILLION DOLLARS IN ONE DAY THANKS TO BANDCAMP
Friday March 20th was an exceptional day on Bandcamp. The platform had decided to waive all its revenue share on sales for one day, to put much needed money directly into artists’ pockets. This way, it wanted to create awareness to the impact of the pandemic on musicians’ lives the world over.
Bandcamp today released the results of their efforts. In 24 hours’ time, over 800.000 items were sold, seeing 4.3 million dollars going straight to the artists and labels.
Soccer Mommy Live at KCRW
Soccer Mommy played a live set at KCRW just last week. Ideal preparation for her concert at Botanique on June 13th!
Resident Advisor offers numerous ways to turn the spotlight on talented musicians from the electronic genre. At this moment, it's working on the 'Save Our Scene' project, attempting to help all artists struggling because of the current pandemic.
It also offers two great podcasts. The RA Podcast offers both big names and upcoming talent the chance to showcase their music. The RA Exchange is a series of interesting interviews with artists from all over the world. We picked out episode 500, featuring Squarepusher's Tom Jenkinson, talking about his new album 'Be up a hello', his 'Lamental' EP and his upcoming tour (which will be adjusted now, surely). You can listen to the podcast through Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple Podcasts or the Resident Advisor website van Resident Advisor.
Both podcasts have hundreds of episodes, vital listens for any fan of the genre!
Manu Dibango : 1933-2020
Manu Dibango was a saxophonist, an emblematic figure of the African music scene and a true afro-jazz legend. He passed away on Tuesday March 24th at the age of 86. "Papa Manu", "Le Doyen", "Papy Groove" or simply "Manu", visited Botanique on multiple occasions during his sixty-year career. He was present at the 1990 Eté Botanique, as well as Les Nuits Botanique in 1994. During Les Nuits in 1997 he made the Chapiteau bounce like never before.
He was born in Douala and arrived in Marseilles in 1949, and was the author of "Soul Makossa", one of the greatest hits of world music. He was still performing on stage only a few months ago. Manu Dibango has now joined Fela Anikulapo Kuti and Dizzy Gillespie, two other kings, respectively of Afrobeat and jazz, who he respected so much.