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

Whilst Interview by Stewart Smith


Counterflows marks the first Glasgow show from a band who have already made waves with shows at London’s Cafe Oto and Dundee Contemporary Arts. February saw the release of their debut EP on Optimo Music, ‘Everything There Was Was There’, a five-track excursion into disco grooves, motorik rhythms, analogue electronics and Ethiopian jazz, all underpinned with a strong punk ethos. The Glasgow-based group will play Late Night Counterflows alongside featured artist Joe McPhee and General Ludd, the new duo from Tom Marshallsay of Dam Mantle and Rich McMaster of Golden Teacher and Silk Cut.

Drummer and multi-instrumentalist Conal Blake spoke to Stewart Smith about Whilst’s evolution from a studio project to a free-wheeling live act.

Could you introduce the band?
We are Scott, Conal, Stu, Andrew and Murray. We have also worked in the studio with vocalists Lara and Aldo.

You all come from a range of musical backgrounds. What brought you together?
Some of us have known each other for years, some of us have played in bands together previously and some of us have only known each other for a short period of time. We were brought together through an opportunity to record some music at the Green Door Studio in Glasgow, last summer.

Did you have a clear idea of what you wanted to do or has it been more spontaneous?
The whole thing came around purely by chance. We had time and ideas. It was a quite spontaneous process, we would come up with an idea and record it to tape before we could forget. We had the time of our lives recording, at moments we were rolling around on the floor laughing.

You’re one of several bands associated with Green Door Studios. Do you feel it’s become something of a hub for Glasgow bands?
The studio is definitely an important place for Glasgow’s music community. The free courses they provide help demystify the writing and recording process, opening it up for anyone to have a shot. Emily [MacLaren] and Stuart [Evans] have a really open minded and well informed approach to the whole thing, it’s not surprising that the studio is being recognised.

You’re signed to Optimo Music. Have the club and label been a big inspiration for you?
Yeah. Both the club night and the label are great. They are a well established and popular club night who also put on really weird and amazing live music. A fan of James Chance & The Contortions could go along and discover club music and vice versa. The label too, they’ve released some really great music, Peter Zummo, Golden Teacher, Divorce… we love it.

You played your first show at Cry Parrot’s recent residency at Cafe Oto, London. Translating your studio sound to a live setting must be quite a challenge…
Not really, the hardest part was working out who plays what. We were all fighting over who got to play the [Korg] MS10. The Cafe Oto show was great, we really enjoyed ourselves.

Are there any Counterflows artists you’re particularly looking forward to?
Getting to see Joe McPhee play is really exciting. The line up this year is really amazing, definitely looking forward to Heatsick’s Extended Play, The Space Lady, Aki Onda… lots!