“An antidote to mindless entertainment”


In his Orwellian novel Vincent, Joey Goebel portrays a bleak, dystopian society where people as well as their taste in music, entertainment and art have for long succumbed to the omnipresent influence of mainstream media, until one powerful man creates a sinister plan to regain control…

Collaborating closely with the team at UT Connewitz, the TransCentury Update festival has consistently delivered on its promise to provide an antidote to mindless entertainment since its birth in 2016.

This year’s line-up is a bold testament to the festival’s uncompromising agenda of pushing well-established boundaries in entertainment. Stretching across three days (16-18 November) and four venues in town, including the independent cinema Kinobar Prager Frühling, the festival will see an eclectic range of artists come to Leipzig – some of them for the very first time.

From ambitious avant-garde feasts, such as the 18-headed Andromeda Mega Express Orchestra and Swiss accordion player Mario Batkovic, to the colourful, jovial spirits of genre-bending misfits WaqWaq Kingdom and Orchestra of Spheres – this year’s edition will take its audience on a cosmic rollercoaster ride to the blazing edges of the galaxy, back to the darkest depths of Planet Earth again.

Bands such as Kikagaku Moyo, U.S. Girls and Ought may surprise their fans by having adopted a more mellow and accessible approach on their new recordings, while the much hyped girl band Dream Wife are set to put the stage on fire with their notoriously energetic live show.

Both U.S. Girls and Dream Wife are prime examples of the curators’ intentions to create more space for the female voice in this year’s edition.

Meghan Remy’s deviation from her earlier, more experimental DIY music to the sweeter pop vocals on her latest album may sound like a sophisticated derivative of Kylie Minogue, but in handling disturbing issues such as domestic violence and male abuse of power, her lyrics display a complex psychological depth, unmatched by the frivolous, tongue-in-cheek girls of Dream Wife, whose composition seems like an almost parodic cast of Die Antwooord, girl-next-door and punk characters. This is, of course, intentional and not surprising at all, considering Dream Wife started out as a fake band performance project in art school.

Joined by the sweet & sticky funky fuzz of Unknown Mortal Orchestra, the irresistible post-punk vibe of Crack Cloud, the groovy despair-disco of Klaus Johann Grobe, and the bleak twist on Neue Deutsche Welle punk by GEWALT, this year’s festival line-up will undoubtedly explore a previously unmatched range of musical genres and emotional responses.

As in previous years, the prolific visual art collective WISP will once again enrich the festival with their scenography. With the invitation of Dr. Jessica Nitsche, the festival programme will, for the very first time, include a lecture and selection of short films focusing on the evolution of music video channels, from their early beginnings on television in the 1990s to their predominantly online distribution today.

By Lydia-Marie Lafforgue

TransCentury Update No. 3: 16-18 November 2018

Get info and tickets online (Please note that 15 Nov event HAS BEEN CANCELLED)

Orchestra of Spheres. (Press photo courtesy of TransCentury Update)
Orchestra of Spheres. (Press photo courtesy of TransCentury Update)
  • Friday, 16/11

7:30 PM – UT Connewitz

Kikagaku Moyo (Japan / Guru Guru Brian)
Klaus Johann Grobe (Switzerland / Trouble In Mind)
Orchestra of Spheres (New Zealand / Fire)

11:59 PM – Ilses Erika

GEWALT (Germany / This Charming Man)

  • Saturday, 17/11

7 PM – UT Connewitz

Crack Cloud (Canada / Meat Maschine)
Ought  (Canada / Merge)
U.S. Girls (Canada / 4AD)

10:30 PM – Conne Island

Dream Wife (England / Lucky Number)
Unknown Mortal Orchestra (New Zealand / Jagjaguwar)
WaqWaq Kingdom (Japan & Germany / Jathari)

  • Sunday, 18/11

4 PM – Kinobar Prager Frühling

Jessica Nitsche’s Denken Sie Groß (music videos between post-YouTube and retromania – short films & lecture)”

7:30 PM – UT Connewitz

Mario Batkovic (Switzerland / Invada)
Andromeda Mega Express Orchestra (Germany / Alien Transistor)

WERK 2 hosts many types of events, from fashion and art shows like City Crash (pictured here in 2015) to TEDx talks the past few years, to a Christmas market, concerts and dance parties. This is the first job fair they host, though. (Photo: Stefan Hopf)
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