Named after one of Europe’s major rivers, the Elbe flows through the Czech Republic and Germany, notably through the industrial harbour city of Hamburg, which usually hosts the annual Elbjazz Festival.
The organisers say that “dancing under cranes and disco balls” is sadly out of the question this year, so it’s opening up to a global streamed celebration instead.
Like all good forward-thinking jazz festivals, they have a pretty loose appreciation of the form, with an eclectic line-up of free streamed gigs and on-demand performances, which run from 3.30pm to 7.30pm tonight (Friday) and tomorrow.
Notwist are headliners of sorts and they’re the case in point. Formed in 1989, the German act are shape-shifting experimentalists, with noise-rock, electronica and post-rock filtered through their 11 albums and soundtracks (among the jazz).
Other prominent acts on the bill include old school funk from Sweden’s Nils Landgren’s Funk Unit, French soul diva China Moses and the Lebanese Masaa quartet blending Arabic verse and contemporary jazz. (See elbjazz.de)