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B Side, Film

Bounce Presents: ‘NATIVELAND 2023 — A Short Film’

NATIVELAND remains a vital cultural phenomenon, and the film captures its essence with raw energy and an unflinching gaze.

  • Melony Akpoghene
  • 20th February 2024

The fifth edition of NATIVELAND which held last December at Sol Beach, pulsated with a different energy and this was captured in a frenetic short film by Bounce, a platform dedicated to documenting and amplifying the culture. 


A Lagos-based festival, NATIVELAND is established as a melting pot of backgrounds, cultures, and artistic expressions. Launched in 2019, it holds a singular relevance in the development of the modern music festival that shapes the aesthetic and popularity of niche, underground sounds; apparently, sounds like alté which was tentatively gaining attention from its position on the fringes.


Last year’s iteration fused Afrobeats, alté, hip hop and other contemporary African sounds with fashion, art, and a communal spirit. The high-profile headliners, Ayra Starr, Lancey Foux, Uncle Waffles, ODUMODUBLVCK, alongside the eclectic lineup — which included Brazy, Cruel Santino, Shallipopi, DETO BLACK, BOJ, Odunsi (The Engine), Bloody Civilian, Lifesize Teddy, Kold AF, SGaWD, Odeal — drew in a massive crowd.


The film throws you into the heart of the action from the get-go. Viewers are plunged in the festival’s charged atmosphere, with a diverse crowd, trendy attire, and palpable excitement. Close-up shots capture the energy of live performances, from dancers grooving to first-time attendees soaking in the experience.


The energy spills over from the stage, igniting a sea of bodies moving in unison. The production easily integrates comments shared by key figures, including organizers like Teezee and artists like Brazy sharing their visions and experiences. Backstage moments offer a behind-the-scenes look at the festival’s work to ensure excellence. The film also highlights the festival’s smaller moments, like food stalls, installations, and spontaneous dance circles.


A lot of effort was meticulously poured in for NATIVELAND 2023 to go above and beyond. Connecting through a variety of audiences, the festival brought many Africans together over a shared interest. But even more, it acted as a space where young people gathered to create and express themselves.


NATIVELAND remains a vital cultural phenomenon, and the film captures its essence with raw energy and an unflinching gaze. It’s a document of young African swagger, genre-bending beats, and a community committed to its own rhythms.


Watch the short film here:



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