Jupiter and Okwess | photo by Ashley Gellman for WXPN | agellmanphotos.com
XPN Fest Recap: Jupiter & Okwess make their Philly-area debut all the way from the Congo, and the crowd goes wild
For their first time in the Philadelphia area, Jupiter & Okwess performed a spectacularly high energy set at the River Stage for day two of #XPNFest.
Born in Kinshasa, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Jupiter Bokondi emerged into Africa’s rhythmic music scene in the 1970’s in the form of a wedding and funeral performer. After moving to Berlin for the duration of his adolescence, he delved into the psych pop scene and formed groups that incorporated his country’s musical styling of percussive beats and erratic yet unifying vocals. After years of musical experimentation, appreciation for the European soundscape, and the unending ties to Africa, Jupiter & Okwess emerged.
They took the XPNFest Marina Stage decked out in the most fun, bright clothes, and the biggest smiles on all their faces. The coolest part of their set was that all of their songs were sung in their native language, and the crowd was loving every second of it. It just proves that music knows no bounds, because this was probably the most fun set of the day so far. Everybody was dancing to swift rhythms and punchy eclectic guitar. Even if you didn’t know the words, you were singing along. I’m so happy Jupiter was a part of today. Not only did they diversify the lineup, but they added an unexpected layer of fun to the day, enough so you forgot how blisteringly hot it was.
Listen back to the performance and check out a photo gallery below.
Mu Son Su