In 2013, 28,000 visitors came to Castlefest, nearly 80% in fanciful costumes.
Four different stages for folk, pagan, medieval, BalkanBeats, electro and metal music; Pagan Village, Medieval Village, Village Larp, Live Style Market, Children's Kingdom, ...
The story of Corvus Corax already lasts for 24 years. After the foundation in 1989 by Wim and Castus as a duo, they travelled as a quintet for a long time, played temporarily together with jugglers and acrobats in the Congregatio or on Tour with 7 or 8 musicians, and lately even combined with about 150 musicians and singers on stage: an ensemble of a choir, a symphonic orchestra, soloists and the regulars of the group Corvus Corax, for their creation “CANTUS BURANUS”.
Their concerts directed the formation all around the world: from Japan and China in the east, to Mexico and the USA in the west; stages for their shows were street corners or pedestrian areas, inner wards, castles, clubs, theatres, concert halls, festivals and last but not least the huge modern multi-purpose halls.
Now, after three times seven years, the group starts its next period of life, with a look back as if through a rear mirror… without losing the view to the future: The next seven years Corvus Corax will perform on stages all around the world with a load of Bagpipes and roaring drums and will party together with their fans who named them the „Kings Of Minstrels“.
ZIRP, the new project of Faun hurdy-gurdy player Stephan Groth, is breaking new ground in the modern German folk scene. By combining different elements of Rock, Jazz, and Folk with traditional European dance music, the four musicians create their so-called Hurdy-gurdy Fusion Folk – a unique and unconventional mix, that enthuses both dance maniacs and passionate listeners who enjoy indulging themselves in diversified and enchanting arrangements.
The instrumentation including amplified hurdy-gurdy, guitar in open tuning, double bass and drums provides for an extraordinary tonal spectrum that is completed by several effects and live loops. Extremely diversified, beautifully balanced and absolutely thrilling!
Like no other band FAUN knows how to open the gates into a mystical otherworld. With the combination of many medieval instruments, drums, archaic beats and enchanting multi-layered male and female vocals, they draw an ever fast growing crowd of followers throughout any musical genres.
Since 2003 FAUN played worldwide more than 700 concerts, released seven chartbreaking CDs and became one of the worlds most famous bands combining mediaval, celtic and nordic music. Together with a unique lightshow FAUN creates on stage a world of fairytale perfection.
At the high days of dance music in Belgium, musicality often seems to be lost. But EmBRUN proves that playing for dancers can also be enjoyable and is not only about swing.
With 5 brilliant musicians and a whole load of instruments they can entertain both dancers and listeners. Their compositions sound very traditional and renewing at the same time and are played with lots of dynamics and energy. That’s why EmBRUN is one of the hottest and finest groups in the dance scene.
Formed in 1998, Shantalla are highly regarded veterans of the international folk scene. Five members of the band are Irish, while singer Helen Flaherty is Scottish. Their first CD, ‘Shantalla’, received rave reviews across Europe and North America.
Their second CD ‘Seven Evenings, Seven Mornings’ was equally acclaimed but in 2005, Shantalla disbanded and the individual members went their separate ways. The band members continued to play and record with various artists but after a five year break they re-formed, and Shantalla’s third CD ‘Turas’ was released in 2011.
Reviewers agreed that the band had matured into one of the best Celtic music acts around, combining musical virtuosity with power, humour, and charisma. Their guitarist Joe will be very familiar to regular Castlefest visitors because he played with Omnia from 2004 to 2010 and has in fact been at every Castlefest since the beginning!
The bohemian PaganFolk band “OMNIA” revolves around the many varied compositions, stories and musical abilities of Jenny and Steve Sic Evans van der Harten. Together with their band consisting of the crazy Didgeman Daphyd Crow (slideridoo, vocals and percussion), Rob van Barschot (drums and percussion) and assisted by their amazing live-crew, they tour throughout Europe and beyond.
OMNIA brings a musical message of respect for nature, personal liberty and freedom of thought and expression for all. In the words of Steve Sic: “Nothing is sacred, only nature!”
They fill their amazing live performances to the brim with brilliant and diverse music, satirical humour, visual richness and a very singular anarchist approach to ancient European religion and musical tradition, combined with modern pagan spirituality. In this way they have captivated the hearts and minds of audiences of all ages and musical preferences and world views, giving them a very wide and varied worldwide fan base.
Irish, Scottish (and Dutch) folk music with a cheeky edge. Dieb, William, Maceál and David sing songs while performing on instruments such as violin, tin-whistle, gitouki, accordion, harmonica, bodhrán, Highland pipes, border pipes and tea chest bass. Dressed in medieval kilts, these Men have performed at countless places, including (folk) festivals, concert venues and theatres, (medieval) parties, bars and weddings.
Thanks to the diverse array of instruments and wide-ranging repertoire of Irish and Scottish dance tunes, three-layered vocal parts, and the lads’ inventive way of presenting themselves, any Rapalje-gig makes for a very special party!
With the use of the oldest of Nordic instruments and poetic metres as well as lyrics sung in Norwegian, Old Norse and Proto-Norse tongue, Wardruna has since the debut in 2009 enchanted fans and critics alike with their mesmerizing recordings and spectacular concerts. Their recently released second album “Yggdrasil” has continued to garner the band excellent reviews and an ever-growing audience.
Wardruna primarily use old and historical instruments such as deer-hide frame drums, Kraviklyra, tagelharpe, mouth harp, goat horn, lur and more. Non-traditional instruments and other sources of sound like trees, rocks, water and torches are also used.
All of these elements are carefully woven into a rich musical landscape and complemented with whispering voices, melodic song and mighty choirs. Although Wardruna’s music share characteristics with music typically labeled as folk, world and/or ambient, none of these genres can really describe their unique style. It truly must be experienced.
Asynje: a Pagan Folk Band from Denmark. They mix the unique Scandinavian Nordic root music with electronic beats and soundscapes to compose new music and songs inspired by old legends of the North and Scandinavian landscapes. Two of the members of Asynje - Martin Seeberg and Søren Hammerlund - founded the group Valravn, together with Juan Pino and Anna Katrin Egilstrod, in 2005.
Asynje is coming out with a new album this summer and they will release this album at Castlefest!
(1) Castlefest 2014 Logo,
(2) Corvus Corax,