There are few experimental artists who can compete with the breadth of Grouper’s Liz Harris. Since appearing on the scene with her self-titled debut in 2005, Harris’ prolific solo output is only rivaled by her collaborations with acts like Xiu Xiu and Jefre Cantu-Ledesma.
Grouper’s sound lingers on a purgatorial plane, roaming through a great beyond of folky acoustic drones and piano-driven requiems. There’s a stillness in the tonality of the songs, but a great deal of movement in her lyricism.
Finding ever-growing acclaim from fans and critics alike, Grouper’s album Ruins perhaps best exemplifies the tumultuous and sometimes eerie world Harris creates. Its encroaching swells give way to scattered piano keys with whispered lyrics fitting snugly in between each note.
Harris played Sled Island in 2018 in support of follow-up Grid of Points, with a new set of tales wrapped up in her delicate songcraft, before releasing a nearly wordless ambient electronic album under the name Nivhek in 2019. She returns to the festival this year with a new album in tow, 2021’s Shade. Named Best New Music and the 18th best album of the year by Pitchfork, Shade delineates Grouper’s sonic tendencies into two extremes: clean, spare tracks with minimal accompaniment and noise-riddled bursts of obfuscations. Harris has never sounded so much like herself.
Much like her albums, Grouper’s live sets are intensely personal, aimed to evoke the deepest responses from both longtime fans and first-time witnesses. Performances often feature monochromatic projections to complement the ethereal atmosphere; they’re a place to be introspective or simply just to sway.
THE MUSIC LINEUP: BY NAMEVIEW ALL >
- Actor Director Ahya Simone Aladean Kheroufi Alex Cameron Alicia Clara AllCityJimmy Also Also Also Amy Nelson AN Apollo Ghosts Astral Swans
- Backxwash Bad Bodies Be Afraid Bennett Mitchell betaboys Big Rig BITTER//WASHED Black Thunder Blue Odeur BODY LENS Body Void Bog Bodies Bonnie Trash Bozo Brain Bent BRIDGELAND Bud Frazier and the Electric Razors Buddie Built to Spill
- Cardiograms Carissa Gem Cassia Hardy Cat 500 Caylem Simeon Chad VanGaalen Chairman Chron Goblin Circuit des Yeux Clea Anaïs Cold Water Control Top Counterfeit Jeans Crystal Eyes
- DA'AT Dead Fibres Dead Friends Debate Club Denimachine DJ Hannah Doohickey Cubicle Doreen Dot Cardigan Double Rider Dragon Fli Empire DRI HIEV Dump Babes
- Earthball Eine Kleine China Elizabeth Colour Wheel Ellen Froese Eve Parker Finley Everythingyoueverloved Exits Eye of Newt
- Fitness Flore Laurentienne Florida BC Frankie and the Witch Fingers Fulfilment
- Ghost Woman Ghostkeeper Ginger Beef Gone Cosmic Gorgeous Grimelda Grouper Guests - To Be Announced
- Hair Control Hairnet Handsome Tiger HARSH Heaven For Real Hélène Barbier Hermitess Holy Void HomeSick housepanther HYMMMelodies
- ILL Human Nation Isolato
- JAMES NOBLE Janette King Jarhead Fertilizer JED ARBOUR Jody Glenham Joyce Manor Julie Doiron Julius Sumner Miller
- k.burwash Kamikaze Nurse Kellarissa Kerkland Jerks Khillah Khills Kid Cali KindaColt KMVP knitting Krill Williams KT Laine KTheChosen Kue Varo & the Only Hopes
- L.A. Witch l.n. baba L.T.Leif La Luz Laura Hickli Lavender Country Leather Jacuzzi Little Destroyer Little Snake Living Hour Local Singles Lokey Love Language Low Low Hums Lowkita Lushings Lydia Lunch RETROVIRUS
- Mahogany Frog Maky Lavender Mares of Thrace Maria DeHart Marlaena Moore Matt MacNeil Matthew Cardinal Megamall Melodna Midnight News Mighloe MOREWINE Mortiferum Mother Tongues Motherhood Motorists MYNXY
- Natural Selection DJs Necking Neighbourly Nice Apple Nick Schofield No Frills NUM
- OKGB Ombiigizi Orchidae Osmanthus
- Pantayo Parisian Orgy Peace For Bombs PEARS Poltergeist Pony Girl Pope Joan POSTNAMERS Primitive Man Princess Nokia puppet wipes
- Queens D. Light
- R.A.P. Ferreira ra / sol The Radiation Flowers Raeburn Rempel & The Rousers The Rifle County Players Rip Room Rob Knaggs Ryan Bourne
- Samantha Savage Smith SASAMI Selci SEULEMENT Shearing Pinx Shirley & The Pyramids Silvering Sinzere Sister Suzie Skinny Dyck Slow Down Molasses Slut Prophet Snake River Sonido Nuevo SPRLUA State n Division Status/Non-Status Still Depths Stripmall Stucco Stuttr Sudan Archives Sufyvn Sunalta Sunforger Sunglaciers Surf Dads Suzi Analogue Sweeping Promises
- Takleef Ensemble tarotfuntime Tea Fannie Teebs Teen Daze (DJ Set) Temps Teon Gibbs Thomas Thomas Thus Owls Trash Magic Trench
- Uncanny Valley Uranium Club Uyemi
- Vagina Witchcraft
- wanderingaria Wet Cigarette Wihtikow Wilt Window Lamp Wine Lips Winona Forever Witch Victim WKO Wolf Willow Woodhawk Worse WUT
- Yankee Cowboy Yawn Yoo Doo Right
- ZENON+ Zoon