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

The Counterflows Carnatic Music Project Chennai, India 2016 – DAY ONE

Day 1. Back in the clutch of South Indian heat and the sound of honking traffic

So here I am back in Chennai. Last November as part of a British Council delegation I tasted a glimpse of the wonders of South Indian and of course at Counterflows 2016 we brought to Glasgow the amazing Carnatic music ensemble led by the incomparable Dr L. Muthuswamy. And now I’m back in Chennai, this time to develop a project with the amazing Mark Fell and his equally brilliant son Rian Treanor. We’re going to be exploring the intricate and ancient sound world of South India’s classical culture of carnatic music. Looking at the systems and processes that form the basis of this unique form. We are not out to learn to how play Carnatic music of course. That would be a ridiculous conceit. It would take 30 years to touch base with such an intricate sound world. No, we are here to talk, to open a dialogue between different approaches and maybe cultures, to work together and to maybe create something new. We’ll be recording stuff and sketching out ideas as we absorb the atmosphere and listen.

So day 1 started well. We touched down in Chennai at around 6am and due to the diligence of the EarthSync’s team everything runs smoothly. From actually being able to withdraw some rupees (more on this later), to being collected by the hotel driver to take us to down town Chennai and then being able to get to our rooms. Mark is suffering from a bad bout of flu and in recovery but great that he made the flight. Rest!

After my usual determination to get out and soak in the city, the sun and thick balmy air gets too much and I head back to the hotel. That evening we meet the most incredible gentleman. Sastry Karra is a modest but visionary man. He helped or maybe indeed did set up Earthsync supporting Sonya and her team in many sorts of ways. The evening’s shared talk of ideas about culture to the origin of carnatic music is inspiring and once the production team join us for dinner we even get to talk about speakers and the DX7. It all bodes well…

buildings and a street in chennai