It is with great sadness we have to announce the decision to cancel Counterflows Festival 2020 due to the ongoing issues with COVID-19.

Putting international artists through the stress of cancelled flights and being potentially quarantined is just too much of a risk to take given the current situation. On top of this, it feels increasingly irresponsible to be holding social events of our scale given the risk of the virus spreading.

We will be issuing refunds for the festival via Eventbrite right away. Funds should be back in your account within the next 7 working days.

Counterflows is a small grassroots festival and we appreciate the love and support the artists, audience members, supporters/funders, staff and everyone else have given us on this venture.

As a small statement of solidarity, if you want to help support artists due to perform and their respective independent labels, we have made a list of music that is available for purchase on their bandcamp pages

We are working out our budgets at the moment and aim to pay all the artists cancel fees. If anyone is able is able to help boost the amount we give them you can do so by donating to us via PayPal at 100% of donations will be spread equally between the artists.

As it stands we will be focussing our energy on the 2021 edition of the festival, which will be our 10th year anniversary. The plan is to hopefully reschedule as much of the line-up for the 2020 festival as possible, as well as add some additional projects on top. This of course depends on funding and finances, but our fingers are crossed. We'll keep in touch.

Please look out for and support one another during this difficult time. We all need one another more than ever.

Love and strength,
Alasdair & Fielding – Team Counterflows

Original website still available below
A Festival Of Underground, Experimental & International Music
2 – 5 April 2020
Various Venues Around Glasgow

Rio Day Eight – The First Broccoli Rice and the Sound of Things


It is a slow start. The last full day in Rio. So I jump on the Metro and head up town to Centro. The financial hub of Rio. It is a reassuring place. Bustling with city life. High rise life, offices and workers off for lunch. I walk from the Metro station up town to Maison de France where today’s activities will happen. The Rio Metro is a really easy system to negotiate. It is just a pity it doesn’t go to so many places. For today it is perfect. First I need some lunch so Chico recommends Casa Villarino which is 5 minutes away. Bernardo joins me at what is an amzing spot. Casa Villarino is an old literature and Bossa Nova hang-out where the great and the good have chewed the fat for years. It is a beautiful wooden panelled old place. Bernardo and I opt for the same choice. Squid and broccoli rice. Broccoli rice was a gastronomic highlight last year and does not disappoint.

Maison De Farnce is a very lovely venue and after lunch I return to hear Felicia Atkinson’s talk. The talk takes place on the top floor in the new media room. It is not quite ready yet but is really impressive and surrounds us with shelves of books. A small throng of Monday Novas Frequencias fans gather. Felicia is a delightful person and her practice encompasses the whole gambit of artforms. She has been in residency at Tunga’s studio and has been responding to this space and Tunga’s work. It is really refreshing to hear that she really does not know what might happen at her performance and how the residency will affect her responce to her own music.

Back to Flamengo where I grab a cake and a coffee and ponder this Rio trip.

“Life is tragic simply because the earth turns and the sun inexorably rises and sets, and one day, for each of us, the sun will go down for the last, last time. Perhaps the whole root of our trouble, the human traouble, is that we will sacrifice all the beauty of our lives, will imprison ourselves in totems, taboos, crosses, blood sacrifices, steeples, mosques, races, armies, flags, nations, in order to deny the fact of death, which is the only fact we have. It seems to me that one ought to rejoice in the fact of death – ought to decide, indeed, to earn one’s death by confronting with passion the conundrum of life.” James Baldwin – The Fire Next Time

The evening’s performances are an interesting combination of the art of DIY instruments and things. There is a long history in Brazil especially from Bahia of constructing instruments. Chico explains some of this to me. I can’t remember the names of everyone but in the 1940s a Swiss teacher began this here in Brazil (I may be wrong here). I am aware of the great Tom Ze’s inventions and music. One of my favourites actually. So Marcos Scarassatti is part of this long history. His instruments are amazing and his set is a fascinating and intricate construction. Pierre Bastien follows with his meccano like constructions crunching out clockwork rhythms while he accommpanies on his pocket trumpet squealing and hissing through affects and sometimes breaking into the bluesy soul of old Miles. At one point when a projection of gospel singers joins the sound I am reminded of those few tracks that Bessie Smith and Louis Armstrong made way back then.

This research trip was kindly supported by: