Einstürzende Neubauten, Mogwai, Paul Kelly lead 2017 Dark Mofo line up

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This is perhaps Dark Mofo’s strongest line up to date

Hobart’s Dark Mofo festival is a celebration of the brutal winter that falls upon the Tasmanian capital in the middle of each year.

The festival encourages locals to wander the streets and embrace the season, rather than stay huddled in their warm homes. As incentive, they use the darkness and coldness of the city’s natural climate as a backdrop for a kinda spooky, kinda gloomy, but very enjoyable event.

A big part of their program is focused on music. This year, the festival’s line up is among the best they have ever presented.


German industrial geniuses Einstürzende Neubauten lead the line up this year with two exclusive performances that showcase their greatest hits of the past 37 years. These innovative pioneers of experimental noise rock


Scottish post-rock masters Mogwai make their first pilgrimage to Dark Mofo, where they will bring their soaring, beautiful and very loud brand instrumental rock (and intimate knowledge of harsh winters) to its most fitting Australian home.

Xiu Xiu will perform their acclaimed show that celebrates the music of Twin Peaks in a special afternoon show. While forward thinking sound artists like Grouper, Brisbane’s Lawrence English and former Nine Inch Nails member Alessandro Cortini will play a very late night show of soothing electronic delights.

RELATED: Gloomy Dark Mofo subverts the festival norm

The local talent assembled is top-class too.

Ancient Rain is the latest project for Paul Kelly. It brings the Australian songwriting legend, Irish singer Camille O’Sullivan and pianist Feargal Murray together to sing songs inspired by 100 years of Irish letters. Think Yeats, Joyce, Kavanagh and so on.

The most powerful voices in Australian hip hop, A.B. Original will tear the Odeon Theatre to shreds with their incredible live show. Before them, the stunning Thelma Plum will showcase the brilliant voice and songs that have made her a firm favourite in recent years.


The live iteration of Clinton Walker’s essential book Buried Country brings artists like Leah Flanagan, Buddy Knox, Jason Walker, Luke Daniel Peacock and Warren H Williams together to celebrate the history of Indigenous Australian country music.

Then there are the things that are less familiar, but will no doubt blow minds once they occur in the depth of the Tasmanian winter.


Whether it’s the Norwegian black metal of Ulver, the piano brilliance of Something More favourite Sophie Hutchings, the theremin experimentation of Miles Brown (his 200km pilgrimage from Hobart to Launceston will be fascinating) or the TSO’s performance of John Cage’s infamous ‘4’33”’, there’s something really damn weird for everyone.

It’s gonna be dark, it’s gonna be scary, it’s gonna be cold and it’s gonna be beautiful.

Here’s the full list of twisted musical delights the festival has in store for us for 2017.

Einstürzende Neubauten, Ulver, Mogwai, Paul Kelly + Camille O’Sullivan + Feargal Murray, Taake, Anaal Nathrakh, Grave Miasma, Mournful Congregation, Barshasketh, Buried Country, A.B. Original, Thelma PlumAlessandro Cortini, Klara Lewis, Grouper, Lawrence English, Xiu Xiu Plays the Music of Twin Peaks, Red Bull Music Academy: Transliminal, Luke Howard + Tilman Robinson, Chris Levine + Marco Perry, Byron J Scullin + Supple Fox.

For all the info on who is playing when, head to the Dark Mofo website. Bring a jacket.