The NATIVE x PowerHorse Present: ‘WTF IS ALTÉ!’

a mini-doc on the fastest growing subculture in Lagos, Nigeria.

Alté is a word with many connotations. Shortened from the word alternative, it has become the moniker for an ever-growing Nigerian subculture which has been bubbling in the underground for quite some time. Unfortunately, the term has often been reduced to an insult against alternative people who are sometimes accused of devil worship, for using aesthetics and themes that make our deeply religious society uncomfortable.

On the less extreme end, they have also been accused of all being pretentious or shallow. Alté can be used by some as a shorthand for people who go against the norm for the sake of it. This waters down the innovation within the movement, and paints everyone who steps outside the mainstream with the same brush.


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The NATIVE has always put a focus on supporting the genuine artistry and innovations of the Nigerian music scene, particularly the underground which has long been maligned by industry gatekeepers. Our music festival NATIVELAND has been headlined by many alternative artists, such as Odunsi (The Engine), Cruel Santino, Lady Donli and the pioneers themselves, DRB.

Thus it was only fitting that a documentary on the scene be birthed by none other than Teni “Teezee” Zacchaeus of the NATIVE, Lex, Ladder & Booker, and Metallic Inc. Titled ‘WTF is Alté?’, the mini-doc uncovers the scene’s key players while giving us glimpses into their lives and their methods.

“That’s what makes me alté, doing what I like to do or doing what I know how to do,” chimes Ashley Okoli on the video, speaking to the importance of staying true and not conforming to the mainstream. We hear their insight into what alté is and why it’s so important. It examines the history behind the term, as well the people that kicked of the movement.

‘WTF IS ALTÉ’ was directed by Ademola Falomo, San Omosa, Chukwuka Nwobi and Teni Zaccheaus, and is a true partnership between change makers in Nigerian society.

Featured image credits/Sulaimon Adebisi Wale