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OFF Festival 2013, Patrick Wolf

OFF Festival 2013 Opening Night: Patrick Wolf, August 1st, 2013

Aug 01, 2013 OFF Festival 2013 Bookmark and Share

The seventh annual edition of the OFF Festival (held in Katowice, Poland) kicked off with an inspiring set by Patrick Wolf. The London, England-based troubadour was in town to promote last year’s retrospective album Sundark and Riverlight. But what he delivered was something closer to a party than performance. Just ask the gaggle of teenagers who found themselves onstage singing backup for riotous set closer, “Bloodbeat.” (“Let’s go on X Factor next year!” Wolf said, encouraging his cohorts.)

From performing on four different instruments (for those keeping score: piano, guitar, harp, and hammer dulcimer), to strutting, posturing, and pulling up the fabric of his oversized black shorts, Wolf held his audience rapt with undeniable charisma. While naysayers might claim that his is a style born more of theater than feeling, such unbelievers were impossible to hear over the din of clapping, cheer, and sing-alongs.

It wasn’t all light-hearted cabaret. Wolf struggled to perform Lupercalia cut “House” first attempting to pass off his struggle as merely forgetting lyrics. Finally, after a chorus of “fucks” he pulled back the curtain, admitting the source of his frustration. “You don’t have to clap for an emotional breakdown,” he told the audience, before opening the show up to requests. (“What’s miserable?” he mumbled, scanning his set list.) The replacement song, “Tristan” appeared to be both less taxing and suitably dark.

The line of melancholy was present at other moments, from “Bitten,” a tune about Bela Lugosi and Amy Winehouse, to “The Sun is Often Out,” death was present only slightly less during the show than the average Woody Allen film. “Thursday is the most depressing day of the week,” Wolf emphatically declared at one point.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, we’re all going to die. But until then, thanks for giving us all a chance to drink and be merry.


1. Hard Times

2. Paris

3. The Libertine

4. Time of My Life

5. Wind in the Wires

6. Bitten

7. The Sun is Often Out

8. House Tristan

9. Secret Garden

10. Bermondsey Street

11. Magic Position

12. Bloodbeat



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July 14th 2016

Friday, Tyke is a great book. I never saw it coming. But do look out Juniper too. If you love the one, you're bound to like it too. I think it's Kemp's mapsertiece.