Monday, September 08, 2014

End Of The Road 2014 - more highlights

Over the last day or two I have pondered whether to try and theme my further thoughts on End Of The Road 2014 by genre, chronology or stage. In the end I concluded that such divisions were largely immaterial. What really matters is this - more of the acts that I really liked. There are plenty of them and therefore this might cover two posts in time.
To start with is Lau, whose members I have all seen playing live at least once but never together as such. The link above reads like a textbook exercise in hyperbole until, that is, you see it happen live. Here they are, Garden stage, Saturday afternoon.

This is of course one reason that, in the ten years Lau has existed, it has taken away the BBC Radio 2 Folk Award for 'Best Band' four times, most recently in 2013.
Whilst on the subject of quality, another thing to note is that of the printed EOTR festival programme; it is absolutely worth the price (£6) and that is nothing new. The writing, the editorial style and the layout are top notch. The only mistake I noticed was that it said that Cate Le Bon's performance, again on the Garden stage on Saturday, was her EOTR d├ębut: it wasn't, she played the same stage in 2010 but no matter.
That was before the release of her first full LP 'Me Oh My' and she was clearly someone to watch. 'Cyrk' was then followed by her latest, 'Mug Museum', and she just gets better and better. More importantly people both here and in the US (she now divides her time between Wales and California) are starting to take notice.


Someone very accustomed to both the Garden and Tipi stages at EOTR is Jocie Adams. That was however with Rhode Island indie stalwarts The Low Anthem. This was her first EOTR outing fronting her own band Arc Iris here as a four-piece and which, as her tradition dictates, played both stages on Friday.
Lunch time, Friday, on a rather breezy Garden stage.
All four in the frame. Tipi stage at the very end of Friday evening.

On the basis of this you might be thinking that I never even visited the Big Top stage. It is true that in comparison with previous years I spent very little time there but one of the few occasions was to catch part of the Pink Mountaintops set.

It is probably true that I spent less time at the Woods stage than in previous years, though I have already mentioned Jenny Lewis playing there. For all my pre-planning I always end up reinventing much of my schedule on-the-hoof and I will continue to do so. This next band was not, pre-festival, particularly on my radar. It just goes to show how very wrong I can be...
Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks, Woods stage, Friday evening.

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