Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Looking at things in another way...

This follows on from my musings about Latitude 2012 that I posted yesterday. I have to say that the music line-up as currently announced looks pretty strong when compared in some ways to the last couple of years and that does answer one of my criticisms of 2011 in particular. There are plenty of acts new to me at the top end of the bill - Bon Iver and Janelle MonĂ¡e being two that quickly come to mind- that I'd like to see and plenty of others that I have seen before but would be delighted to see again - Bat For Lashes, Chairlift, Laura Marling and Soko being four that I have seen at Latitude before that readily come to mind. In addition there are a whole lot of new/less well know acts that are on my radar and this number should grow as more are announced.
This is the point at which I will add my next caveat: in the last few years the 'Lake Stage', formerly 'BBC Radio 1 Introducing' (by Huw Stephens) has been decidedly a hit and miss affair - good but often woefully underused. I have noticed no specific mention of it in the current programme this year. The Sunset Stage has kept up a much better reputation in my view but it is the relative lack of attention to the smaller, more intimate venues that has bought about some of my ambivalence of late.
It is also a two-edged sword because many of the acts already announced, and who are likely to perform on these stages, are already announced for other festivals including, vide supra, NDH 2012 and EOTR 2012. The first artist announcements for Truck Festival 2012, which has reverted to being a two-day festival, are imminent. If the newer or merely less mainstream is your priority, as in many ways it is mine, then that is surely a consideration too. That said, however, having seen Anna Calvi live on the main (Obelisk) stage at Latitude 2011 I can't wait to see her live at EOTR - for which she is confirmed.
The third aspect, and as far as I'm concerned it is no fault of Latitude per se, it takes me two days off work and a considerable cost just to get there and to get back.
I could probably do any two of Truck, Priddy Folk Festival or Shrewsbury Folk Festival (which keeps being recommended to me) for the same cost; travel, food and beer/cider included!  On the other hand I could just do any one of them and have £120 to spend on new recorded music - and that could even include quite a lot of vinyl.

It is Record Store Day soon --- 21 April 2012. Does anyone fancy getting as much, and as truly varied, vinyl and other goodies together as we can muster in an attempt to woo back those lost to real music - both recorded and live?  More important even than that, to educate the generation that has never really known it at all.

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