Kaltern is a small lakeside village nestling in the South Tyrol, probably better known as an attractive tourist destination than the setting for an innovative pop festival. But Kaltern Pop is now in its 5th edition. And this little sister of the venerable Haldern Pop Festival is busy building up a network of committed local music heads, businesses and international contacts. The plan is to make a creative force field in the area that benefits all who contribute or come into contact; establishing creative lines of communication throughout the Italian, Swiss and Austrian Alps. Music is the midwife and Louder than War is delighted to be a new festival partner, and really happy to check things out.  

At first glance Kaltern Pop, with its promise of good wine, quality music and beautiful scenery, sounds like those marquee hampers-and-champers events for people who pretend to like music. But this assessment would be way off-mark. No marquee event we know of would dare to invite a band as wild and rampaging as St Petersburg’s Shortparis, or an ice-cool rock act like Rotterdam’s Lewsberg. Or championing the idea of wildness and experiment (rather than the boring old topics like monetizing streaming channels) in the conference; which boasts Pete Jenner of Pink Floyd and Billy Bragg fame. Or, indeed, get the locals involved with working with internationally renowned musicians and organisations such as s t a r g a z e and Cantus Domus. 

If music is the midwife the village is the womb, with the Franciscan Church, Windegg, the South Tyrolean Wine Museum, the Catholic Community Centre, the cinema and the Kulturbahnhof (KUBA) playing an active part. Watch out for an extensive scene report this month. And with Shortparis involved, expect fireworks!

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