To Rococo Rot, the legends of the German music scene blending electronic music with live sound, the Italian masters of poetic vibe Dead Cat in a Bag, and excellent Polish bands – Szorstkie, Tuleje, and Atol Atol Atol are the next performers to join the line-up of extraordinary artists to appear in Lublin between 6-9 July 2023 at East of Culture – Different Sounds. Significantly, each of these bands is affiliated with the iconic record label Gusstaff Records, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, and whose colorful history we will explore. It is worth recalling that this year marks the 16th edition of Lublin’s Different Sounds and its 10th iteration as part of East of Culture, a project carried out by the National Centre for Culture in cooperation with three cities in eastern Poland – Lublin, Białystok, and Rzeszów, with funds provided by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage.

The second round of this year’s line-up announcements opens with one of the leading bands of the German avant-garde music scene, namely the trio To Rococo Rot. Their concert in Lublin will be an exciting treat for fans because the group, which has been inactive for some time, is reactivating especially for East of Culture – Different Sounds and will perform their best compositions, combining electronic and analogue sounds for a unique experience. At the other end of the spectrum, Dead Cat in a Bag draws on the rich legacy of great songwriters, and comparisons with Tom Waits, Nick Cave, and Leonard Cohen are entirely appropriate. A pinch of folk, rock, and theatre music rounds out the trio’s sound. The line-up of Different Sounds would be incomplete without Polish performers. Taking the lead this year are phenomenal artists affiliated with Gusstaff Records, which celebrates its 25th anniversary. Therefore, our line-up will feature Tuleje – a band whose sound takes traditional music as its starting point but evolves into free improvisation,
Atol Atol Atol – the latest post-punk project of the Wrocław-based team connected with groups such as Ukryte Zalety Systemu, and the trio szorstkie offering music at the intersection of jazz, noise, post-rock, and sound experiments.

More about the artists

To Rococo Rot – this Berlin-based group became famous for their flawless blend of electronic and analog elements. As Pitchfork famously put it, the band’s sound was „unmistakably digital, yet 100% human.” The German trio remained active and enjoyed great success until 2014, when they split up. Their Lublin concert will be an unprecedented event and a kind of reactivation of the group – To Rococo To has only performed one jubilee concert since 2014, which they presented at a festival in Düsseldorf in December 2022. In the same year, they released unpublished recordings from the legendary John Peel Sessions, much to their fans’ delight. Their visit to Lublin will offer an absolutely extraordinary and one-of-a-kind opportunity to listen to this distinguished band live.

Dead Cat in a Bag – The band from Turin is deservedly regarded as one of the most interesting and original acts on the Italian music scene. In some ways, their music continues the artistic tradition of legendary songwriters like Tom Waits, Nick Cave, and Leonard Cohen. On the other hand, it also contains a whole catalogue of references to illustrative theatre or film music. The group makes imaginative use of traditional music while also drawing inspiration from folklore and classic literature (the band’s name directly refers to Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Tom Sawyer). Contemporary, louder sounds round out their music, producing a fascinating result. The band’s instrument set consists of violin, accordion, banjo, and well-balanced electronics. Over the last decade, the Italians have shared the stage with performers such as Hugo Race or Bonnie “Prince” Billy. Their Lublin concert is sure to earn them the appreciation of the Different Sounds audience.

Atol Atol Atol – a new project of musicians who are well past their debuts and have established themselves in the Polish alternative scene. Łukasz Plata (UZS – Ukryte Zalety Systemu, Przepych), Artur Soszyński (UZS – Ukryte Zalety Systemu), and Hubert Kostkiewicz (Kurws), together with vocalist Agata Horwat, have created a group that explores post-punk territories, music that the artists themselves call “basement funk and dub-saturated no-wave”. Atol Atol Atol’s debut album, “Koniec sosu tysiąca wysp”, was released in the autumn of 2022 by Gusstaff Records.

Tuleje – At first glance, Tuleje appears to be a trio reinterpreting traditional music from eastern Wielkopolska (Greater Poland). However, on closer examination, they reveal more layers and contexts, eluding simple classifications. Their simple, minimalist instrument set based on drums, double bass, and vocals in this case proves capable of producing an incredibly wide range of sounds. Traditional music is their starting point, but is followed by jazz, free improvisation, or trans and groove pertinent to rock music. There’s no doubt that Tuleje are one of the most intriguing and fascinating artists on Gusstaff Records’ eclectic roster.

szorstkie – The band was formed during the challenging times of the pandemic in 2020, in the recording studio “Trzaski”, somewhere between Częstochowa and the old forest. Robert Kafel (Lewe Łokcie), Kamil Klama (Beukot) and Michał Klama (Pleń, Pi) describe their music as “pandemic noise”, but it’s more precise to say that the band deals in experimental and avant-garde music, and their compositions are largely based on improvisation, variations, and the creation of different, fairly piercing sounds. The band’s debut album was released by Gusstaff Records.

The other musical acts scheduled to perform at East of Culture – Different Sounds include Ladytron, a legendary group from the British electronic scene, Stian Westerhus, a Norwegian guitar virtuoso, and Nuha Ruby Ra, a rising star in the British contemporary music scene. More announcements coming soon, including updates on the music line-up as well as non-music modules that will include an excellent film programme, exhibitions, panels, literary premieres, events for children and young people, and workshops and discussions for music professionals.

East of Culture – Different Sounds

6-9 July 2023
Błonia near the Castle, Lublin
Admission free.

More information about the festival can be found at and