Music preview – Hidden Door 2022

Across seven nights of live music, Hidden Door will be bringing an eclectic lineup of talent, showcasing both local and international artists, to the former Royal High School in Edinburgh.

Here’s just a flavour of what we’ve got lined up…

Night 1: Thursday 09 June

Headlining the Outdoor Stage on the opening night of Hidden Door 2022 will be 90’s indie-dance pop pioneers Saint Etienne, supported by the off-kilter pop sounds of Watford-born Connie Constance. Kicking off the programme on the Indoor Stage we have the dissonant electronic rock of Highlands-born Makeness, alongside local legends Jacuzzi General and Miss Represented

For the inaugural evening of our late-night venue, The Basement, we have Hobbes Music Label showcasing their eclectic roster of artists; Leonidas & Hobbes, Gaming, Nina Stanger, Exterior and Jacksonville. Finally, Alas de Liona will be launching our unique Pianodrome venue with her dreamy, mellow indie spacepop.

Night 2: Friday 10 June

The second day of music on the Outdoor stage will be headlined by the funky 70’s-inspired soul-pop of solo act Yellow Days, alongside the ethereal dream pop of South London four-piece Bleach Lab. Inside, audiences can catch provocative, shape-shifting newcomer Nuha Ruby Ra, Irish alternative singer-songwriter Far Caspian, and the electronic lyrical post-rock of six-piece Blue Bendy.

Local community radio station EHFM will be kicking off their festival-long residency in The Basement, next to a performance by the slow-burning textured electronica of Edinburgh-based Northern Irish producer Sad City. In the Pianodrome, Hidden Door are excited to showcase the improvised blues, jazz, funk and soul of the Mike Kearney and Friends Improvathon.

Night 3: Saturday 11 June

The third night of Hidden Door 2022 will see the Outdoor Stage headlined by mercury-nominated modern instrumentalists Portico Quartet, with support from Norman Wilmore, a Glasgow-based jazz saxophonist hailing from the Shetland Islands. The Indoor stage will see Noushy 4tet, a jazz quartet led by Anoushka Nanguy, 2020 Scottish Jazz Award-winning trombonist and vocalist, as well as Dublin’s lo-fi RnB singer-songwriter EFÉ, and electronic dance duo Real Lies

Brand new Edinburgh-based bass-heavy clubnight by and for queer women, Club Sylkie, will be taking over the Basement, whilst the Pianodrome will be showcasing the rich sound landscapes of Edinburgh-based improvisers S!NK.

Night 4: Sunday 12 June

On a night of showcasing the variety of Scotland’s music scene, Sunday night’s headliners of the Outdoor Stage will be the Tinderbox Orchestra, a grassroots collective of young people, musicians, artists and youth workers in Scotland. They’ll be supported by the varied instrumentation and eclectic sounds of Edinburgh seven-piece Broken RecordsLizabett Russo who blends jazz, avant-garde folk and world music, and Edinburgh-born multi-instrumentalist Iona Zajac

The Indoor Stage will continue the celebration of local talent, with Scottish hip-hop mainstay Billy Got Waves, student indie-rock quartet Dinosaur 94, indie trio Holy Loaf, groovy alt-pop singer-songwriter and producer Nani, nu-jazz 7-piece Eloi, and the dreamy electronic sounds of Amber Leith. In the Pianodrome, Edinburgh’s esteemed banjo babe Cera Impala will be supported by an eclectic community of artists in Cera Impala and the Half Moon Medicine Show, whilst the Basement will be immersed in the experimental genre-bending electronic sounds of  Proc Fiskal.

Night 8: Thursday 16 June

The second weekend of Hidden Door 2022 will be launched by London art-rockers Dry Cleaning, who will be headlining the Outdoor stage with support from indie-pop trio Girl Ray. Meanwhile on the Indoor stage, we’ll be starting the weekend off with a high-energy performance from Welsh trio The Bug Club, as well as Edinburgh-based techno krautrock five piece Future Get Down, and Manchester’s electro-punk soloist Lonelady.

Down in the Basement, women and non-binary focused DJ collective Sisu will be showcasing a selection of their genre-crossing DJ talent with SKOOP, CRPNTR, Tzusan, Elsa, Ex.cess, Malissa, and Airali.

Night 9: Friday 17 June

Alternative folk-rock collective This is the Kit will be headlining the Outdoor stage on our penultimate night, supported by the mythology-inspired pop of Serbo-Canadian singer Dana Gavanski. Indoors, alt-rock six piece from the East End of Glasgow, The Joy Hotel, will be joined by Brighton-based band Penelope Isles, and the diverse influences of contemporary folk singer-songwriter Flo Perlin

Sisu will be continuing their residency in the Basement, with sets from the diverse talents of (((CLEOPATRA))), RUTHLSS, Shauna, She Bang Rave Unit, Little Hats, and Sauceress.

Night 10: Saturday 18 June

On the closing night of Hidden Door 2022, electronic group Warmduscher will be bringing their explosive post-punk to the Outdoor stage. Closing the festival on the Indoor stage will be genre-hopping dance band PVA supported by the indie-punk, social-justice influenced music collective from the Northeast, Benefits

For the final night in the Pianodrome, we have Midi Paul creating spliced-up computer funk on vintage electronic equipment, as well as polyrhythmic soundscapes crafted from field recordings, algorithms and found sounds by The Reverse Engineer. Finally, drawing the festival to a close in the Basement, we have EHFM’s own Aphid (Miss World), alongside the final sets from Sisu’s roster, Yasmeen, Noemié, Soraya, and ona:v.

Jacob Brailsford, Music Programmer for Hidden Door 2022, said: “This year, we’ve continued Hidden Door’s dedication to platforming a variety of local and international talent, celebrating an eclectic range of genres and artists. The team at 432 have also contributed tirelessly behind the scenes towards this shared vision, further developing an innovative line up.

“The festival site, the Royal High School, is such an exciting opportunity for staging live music, and I know that audiences can’t wait to see it transformed, so we’ve been working with the unique spaces to curate a program that pushes boundaries and gives audiences an experience to remember! You won’t want to miss this one.”

Hidden Door 2022 Playlist

About the festival

This summer, Hidden Door will be bringing the old Royal High School on Calton Hill to life for a ten day festival of live music, visual art, dance, theatre and spoken word. The property, empty since the 1960s, will be used to celebrate Scotland’s exciting new and emerging creative talent, before work begins to transform it into Scotland’s new National Centre for Music.

The festival will completely transform the entire complex from 9 – 18 June 2022.

Hidden Door are working in partnership with the new National Centre for Music.

Hidden Door 2022 is supported by Baillie Gifford and other generous partners and sponsors.

The Skinny are the official media partners for Hidden Door 2022.

Edinburgh brewer Innis & Gunn is sponsoring this year’s festival and will be pouring a selection of their premium beers at bars across the site. 

Tickets are available via hiddendoorarts.org/tickets or from Citizen Ticket.