Sunday, May 15, 2011

Trip-hop in Belgium

I can't say whether or not trip-hop is particularly popular in Belgium, but it sure is visible here. If you're into trip-hop, I'll give you some Belgian input.

Firstly, one of Belgium's more popular dramas featured a trip-hop track as its theme song. Matroesjka's (English: Matrioshki or Russian Dolls: Sex Trade) was a 2008 series about a group of Russian and Lithuanian girls who are forced into the sex industry in Antwerp. Each episode kicks off with "Post-Modern Sleaze" by UK band Sneaker Pimps. It's not Belgian music, but it's great Belgian television. Here's the intro.

Hooverphonic, who previously had a song of the week here on the blog, is one of Belgium's most successful bands. A good example of their dreamy, sophisticated style is the 1996 track "2 Wicky", featured in among other things the films Stealing Beauty and I Know What You Did Last Summer. The track's main riff is sampled from Isaac Hayes' recording of the 1960s hit "Walk On By".

The classy "Mad About You" is taken from Hooverphonic's 2000 album, The Magnificent Tree.

Lunascape (1998-2008) was a trip-hop band from Brussels. One of its founding members is Kyoko Baertsoen, who was the vocalist for Hooverphonic for a brief period. Lunascape's song "Lane Navachi" was used in the Belgian/American IMAX production Haunted Castle from 2001.

Airlock was formed in Brussels in 1997. Their song "Face Down" appeared in Oliver Van Hoofstadt's film Parabellum. The video below features clips from the film.

Sutrastore is described thus on their page: "Sutrastore’s trip-hop is soft and pleasant, sometimes nostalgic and depressive, with a wealthy instrumentation (taking advantage of acoustic and electronic elements) and magnificent vocals." Their song "Clouds" is no exception.


  1. Nice post, baby! :)
    You should listen to the full album "The Magnificent Tree" by Hooverphonic. There are some great songs on that one :)

  2. Indeed, "Out of Sight" was an even better track than "Mad about you" and "Battersea" from the previous album is amazing too because both tracks expose Geike's amazing vocal range to full extent.

    That said, I have seen Lunascape perform live once in Fnac Leuven, acoustic and with only 50 people there. It was great. Are they still making music as a band?

  3. @Gerrit: About Lunascape: their website has no news beyond the release of their last album in 2008, with the exception of dates for the singer's tour with another band in the fall of 2010. Other sources say that the band split in December 2008.