Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Festivals 2014

This is no long discussion of the many and varied music festivals this summer. I'm simply thinking that this coming long weekend is the time when I really ought to finalize what I intend to do and when so that, as well as getting tickets, there can be a working timetable of sorts. I have some ideas, not all of which are mutually compatible, and I have already ruled several things out due to those to which I have already committed. While pondering I have, of course, been listening to music and also perusing some of the many photos that I have taken at festivals past, and not exclusively last year.
This one is prompted by the release of the recent collaboration between London three-piece Daughter and musicians from The Northern School of Music, Manchester around songs from the 2013 LP 'If You Leave'.
Daughter - The Garden Stage - End of The Road Festival - 31 August 2013.
This was memorable especially for its sense of fragility -  that something might just shatter for no apparent reason. Reworked, with an orchestral backing, the songs are every bit as remarkable. This is 'Amsterdam'. The five-song EP is currently available to purchase on download from the usual places; a limited version on 12" vinyl is released on 26 May.
As for the second album from Daughter - if and when it happens - the band has certainly made their first a tough act to follow!
You might think I have become distracted from my purpose here, but that is not actually the case. I have to chose just one or possibly two festivals to go to - from amongst of a fistful that I might like to go to - so aspects of what make a festival special to me are very much on my mind. End of The Road (EOTR) has many of those features, and I'm going in 2014, so it is a benchmark in kind.
One possibility is to travel the road of Roots and Americana to its home festival in the UK (I am ruling out foreign sorties in 2014). This is another picture I took at EOTR 2013, also on the Garden Stage, the previous evening.
Diana Jones - The Garden Stage - End of The Road Festival - 30 August 2013.
She was touring her 2013 LP 'Museum of Appalachia Recordings' that, despite its title, consists entirely of new songs.
It is not just about the music; it is about the ambience - that combination of facilities, catering, clientèle, and then the almost indefinable other factors. The weather is something that remains completely unpredictable.
I have narrowed my choice of additional festivals to just two. Which should I choose or, as that is just possible, both?
Not only do the dates not clash with each other, or anything else I to which I am committed, the artist-overlap between the two is probably non-existent.  Further to that I have never been to either before, so I have only reviews and my hunches to go on.
Should you have been watching 'Later With Jools Holland' (BBC2, just now) then you will have seen Rae Morris providing vocals for Clean Bandit. Here she is when I saw her live at Deer Shed Festival 2012.

This is another 2014 festival I can't go to as both it, and Latitude Festival, share the weekend with Truck Festival!

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