ESNS (Eurosonic) | Check out the made-in-France acts for 2024
Just like it has done at the start of every year since 1990, Eurosonic will once again be returning in 2024 to fill music fans with excitement. With the event’s aims being to promote European music and to spread it across the continent and beyond, the latest edition of the festival is set to take place over four days between 17th and 20th January in Groningen, Netherlands.
When it comes to acts that are, in one way or another, “made in France”, you can find the following artists and bands on this year’s line-up:
Ana Lua Caiano
Ana Lua Caiano fuses tradition with innovation, combining the richness of Portuguese tradition with electronic sounds, and her 2023 debut EP, Se Dançar É Só Depois, acts as a fine and gripping example of this.
Born in Brittany in 2001, Angie is a versatile artist who juggles R&B, rap and Afropop with assertion. She dropped her debut album, December 8th, on that exact date in 2019, followed by the single ‘Briller’ in January 2021. Since then, she has performed all over France, sharing stages with the likes of Ichon, Yseult and Le Juiice.
The tale of Astral Bakers is the tale of four established French musicians who start a band and whose clear harmony guides their creativity. The group’s soon-to-be-released debut LP, The Whole Story, was shaped in an intimate recording studio and captures a pure and unpretentious kind of music that blends different genres together and celebrates the spirit of collaboration and freedom.
A dazzling marriage of cultures, eras and styles, the band AySay create music that transcends all conventional boundaries and genres. Growing up with both Danish and Kurdish roots, mastermind Luna Bülow Ersahin fell in love with Arabic lutes and especially with the mystical elegance of the oud and the baglama at an early age, and, together with her bandmates, she now incorporates synths, bass guitars, flutes and a whole range of carefully selected samples into the idiosyncratic AySay sound.
Imagine melodic electronic music that’s perfect for dancing in a dark club or lazing on a sunny beach, and you’ve imagined Birrd’s debut EP. Alba evokes disparate scenes such as the Corsican coast and the New York skyline, both of which are inspirations for the Franco-Italian-American artist from Rouen, and the Louvre even invited him to compose a series of pieces inspired by six art masterpieces and to give a monthly performance there in the form of a guided tour. Water and the oceans, meanwhile, serve as the inspiration for his third EP, due in early 2024.
In collaboration with electro producer Paulie Jan, Bracco have created a unique sound that deftly fuses together the darkness of club music and post-punk. Their sophomore album, Dromonia, came out in 2022 via Born Bad Records.
Brama are a psychedelic power trio from central France who combine droning hurdy-gurdy with sharp-cut guitar riffs and energy-blasting drums. The young band skilfully jumps from one genre to another, from an experimental noise foundation onto stellar pop explosions, while digging down into traditions such as French folk music and coming up with a spontaneous and contemporary rock sound. Navigating between krautrock influences and a noise-pop journey, Brama’s music delivers stratospheric energy that certainly doesn’t go unnoticed.
With her second album, Carnaval, French composer Lucie Antunes broadens her sonic horizons. The Perpignan-born, classically trained drummer and percussionist unites the pop world and the avant-garde with a cross-over appeal that transcends genres and borders, and, inspired in part by American composer Meredith Monk, she uses her voice as a percussive instrument for the first time on this record, conveying meaning with nonverbal phrases and phonetics.
NZE NZE was born in 2021 following a residency at Red Bull’s Paris studio. Bringing together the three heads behind Sacred Lodge and the duo UVB76, the French project combines haunted chants, surgical production and dusky atmospheres. At the core of the band’s inspirations, we find the Fang warriors of Central Africa and their stories, while all around, sounds ironed through modular patches and effects pedals swirl, resulting in a fusion of industrial music, dub and post-punk.
With infectious bass and sharp beats, SIERRA has been unfolding her signature energetic, electro and darkwave sound ever since the release of her first EP in 2017. In 2022, she was the opening act on Carpenter Brut’s tour of Europe and North America, while her hit track ‘Unbroken’ would later feature in an Yves Saint Laurent video campaign. Her debut album, A Story of Anger, came out in September 2023.
UTO is Emile Larroche’s and Naysa Barnett’s blend of lo-fi pop sounds and mystical, baroque elements. Their debut EP, Shelter for the Broken, came out via the Pain Surprises label in 2017 and officially marked the group’s birth, while their follow-up effort, The Night’s Due, combined supernatural rhythms with melodies from a bygone era, elegant synths, ghostly piano keys and slow brass notes, creating a hazy and melancholic atmosphere. In 2022, the pair broke new ground by releasing their first album, Touch the Lock.
Uzi Freyja mercilessly mixes playful English and Cameroonian vocab with Parisian swag. Having grown up in a family of musicians, Freyja became steeped in the culture of gospel and soul, and, as a teen, hip-hop was a vibrant source of inspiration. Her music is a blend of confrontational, sensual vocals and hard-hitting electronic production, influenced by artists like Death Grips and Ho99o9, with her second EP, Lunacy, containing five tracks that mix together club sounds, vindictive rap and uncompromising electro.
The Winston Brothers
German funk powerhouse The Winston Brothers released their first full-length LP, entitled Drift, in 2022. The album presents an instrumental trip back to the future of funk, where multi-instrumentalist and producer Sebastian Nagel and Hamburg-born drummer/percussionist extraordinaire Lucas Kochbeck combine a boom-bap state of mind with the raw energy inherent to the funk of the ’60s and ’70s, all of which is supported by an array of frequent collaborators creating dynamic arrangements.
If W!ZARD‘s first album was forging an instrumental and progressive rock–oriented sound influenced by complex math rock rhythms, the band’s members now declare that their songs have evolved into a shorter, more direct and more lyrical post-hardcore format. It reflects their self-critical, emotional state of mind: “It’s also an analysis of a world that’s running to ruin. It’s full of angriness, dementia and violence…”. Recorded alongside Birds in Row’s Amaury Sauvé, W!ZARD’s new LP is due for release in February 2024.
Zaho de Sagazan
Born into a family of artists, Zaho de Sagazan absorbed various forms of music, graphics and dance at an early age before setting out on her own path with her debut album, La Symphonie des Éclairs. Her musical journey is one defined by a curious mélange of influences, including disco and synth-pop from the 1980s, aspects of krautrock and French chanson, a bit of electro and a pinch of indie pop.
You can check out all of these acts now on our France @ Eurosonic 2024 playlist.