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Festival ReviewsBrightonsfinest Playlist


 

Previews


Free Throw

Sticky Mike's Frog Bar
Thursday 22nd February
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GLUM

Green Door Store
Thursday 22nd February
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Puma Blue

The Hope & Ruin
Thursday 22nd February
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Fragile Creatures

The Brunswick
Friday 23rd February
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Alvvays

The Roundhouse, London
Friday 23rd February
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Hookworms

Patterns
Saturday 24th February
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Public Access T.V.

Green Door Store
Saturday 24th February
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Franz Ferdinand

Brighton Dome
Sunday 25th February
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  • Winter Festival – One Church – 2017

    Winter Festival – One Church – 2017 Winter Festival – One Church – 2017 It was the first Saturday of December and Brighton was in full festive buzz. The One Church had been taken over by SOTONES, a co-operative from Southampton, who were celebrating their tenth birthday along with a new compilation showcasing some of the bands they have worked with over the last ten years. With the headliner being the Moulettes, their last show in Brighton before taking a year off, along with a host of local favourites and lesser known bands.
  • Boomtown Fair – 10th-13th August 2017

    Boomtown Fair - 10th-13th August 2017 Boomtown Fair – 10th-13th August 2017 I woke up Tuesday morning with a strange feeling, as though there was a hole inside me. A space that I didn’t know was there before, was now empty - I was homesick. Not of my two-bedroom flat in Brixton, but of my two-person tent in a muddy field in Winchester. Every music festival is built on the promise of one thing – fun – and none fulfils this promise as exceptionally as Boomtown. A sprawling, make-believe fantasy town now in its ninth episode, which provides immersion and depth in its story-telling and entertainment that is likely unrivalled anywhere else in the country.
  • At The Edge Of The Sea Festival 2017

    At The Edge Of The Sea Festival 2017 At The Edge Of The Sea Festival 2017 First, a quick introduction to At The Edge Of The Sea Festival. It’s basically a Wedding Present all-day gig with loads of cool bands that David Gedge, the band’s frontman, has discovered or likes. It takes place at the Concorde 2, kicks off at 3pm sharp and the music is non-stop till kick-out time. The way it works is one band plays in the bar area, right opposite the bar in fact. As soon as they leave the stage then the next band starts up on the main stage. Likewise, when the main stage band is done then the music kicks off in the bar again. So you get a good solid eight hours of non-stop live music.
  • Womad 2017 – Charlton Park

    Womad - 2017 Womad 2017 – Charlton Park The first leg of our journey was a truly epic Southern Fail! After four trains and six hours we arrived, at last, in good dry weather. Beautiful Womad, flags and banners lining every pathway set amongst green landscape and plentiful trees. We felt our burdens of the week ebb away within moments, as every festival should make you feel. Womad Festival celebrates cultural expression from all over the globe and has been around since 1982 when Peter Gabriel with a few other like-minded creatives put it together. Womad combines music, arts, dance, spoken word, food (cookery classes), laughter, yoga, mindfulness workshops and talking books – but music in particular amongst a wealth of other experiences. In its 35th year, Womad brings everyone together and has something for all ages. One of the biggest...
  • The Rock House Festival – Green Door Store – 29th July 2017

    The Rock House Festival – Green Door Store – 29th July 2017 The Rock House Festival – Green Door Store – 29th July 2017 Rock House was initially started eight years ago as a project for local charity Carousel, who help learning-disabled artists develop and manage their creative lives. Before Rock House there was a lack of real performance opportunities for these disabled musicians in a town that prides itself on its music scene, so they launched these nights to try and redress the balance. Since those early days these Rock House nights have grown to become one of the best and most forward-thinking integrated music nights in the UK. I recently caught one of the monthly Rock House nights and, was blown away by the friendly atmosphere and the inventiveness of the musicians. I decided to come and attend this, their first all-dayer event at the Green Door Store, which seemed a great opportunity to...
  • Citadel Festival – Victoria Park – 16th July 2017

    Citadel Festival - Victoria Park Festival - 16th July 2017 Citadel Festival – Victoria Park – 16th July 2017 Following the aftermath of the intense Friday and Saturday showings at Lovebox, its chilled out counterpart Citadel took over Victoria Park on Sunday to cap off a momentous weekend.
  • Brainchild Festival 2017 – Bentley Wildfowl & Motor Museum

    Brainchild Festival 2017 – Bentley Wildfowl & Motor Museum – Friday 7th - Sunday 9th July Brainchild Festival 2017 – Bentley Wildfowl & Motor Museum Brainchild is certainly one of the best and most forward-thinking festivals in the UK, and yet it is still relatively unknown even though it has won the AIM Best Independent Festival award in 2015 and 2016. It happens in the beautifully serene setting of the Bentley Wildfowl & Motor Museum on the Lewes Road heading to Uckfield and boasts only 2,000 people, including all the acts and workers on site.
  • NOS Alive Festival 2017 – Lisbon

    NOS Alive - Lisbon – 6-7th July 2017 NOS Alive Festival 2017 – Lisbon The sun-kissed port of Lisbon was the venue as the Portuguese capital hosted one of the Iberian Peninsula’s largest music festivals.
  • Love Supreme 2017

    Love Supreme 2017 Love Supreme 2017 After the first Love Supreme Festival in 2013, the organisers very nearly decided to throw in the towel. They lost a tonne of money. But disco legends Chic, in a roundabout way, saved the day. Not only had the festival sold a fair few tickets on the back of their appearance, but they also delivered a nigh-on perfect set of sunshine hits that had the crowd in raptures. It proved to be a lucky booking for, only a week before, Chic had stolen the show at Glastonbury, and re-established their credentials as true icons and purveyors of ridiculously infectious and classy hits galore. This fact reverberated to Glynde, in Sussex, telling the organisers that there was potentially a market for this kind of event, an outdoor festival that catered for a well-heeled, mature crowd, that would literally get down to the right kind of music.
  • Funk The Format 2017

    Funk The Format 2017 Funk The Format Festival – Hove Park – 17th June 2017 The idea behind Funk The Format is a good one – a festival made by a local for the locals, with no big corporate companies from out of town leaching in on the weekend utopia. The festival, which is in its fourth year, is the idea of Lucy ‘Elle J’ Small - a once globetrotting music journalist and musical tastemaker from London, turned mother of two and now a funk festival curator. Using her experience from her time working the music biz, she has brought together other mums and friends to...
  • Wild Life 2017

    Wild Life 2017 Wild Life Festival returned to Shoreham, bringing with it some of the country’s hottest and most vital grime and pop stars along for a blistering weekend. The event continues to be curated by Disclosure and Rudimental, and the eclectic line-up was once again packed with acts who have strong links to the two bands.
  • Elderflower Fields - Pippingford Park - 2017

    Elderflower Fields - 26th-29th May - Pippingford Park Elderflower Fields - Pippingford Park - 2017 Last year I reported on this festival as a day tripper, and not as a camper. We were enamoured with it so much that we took the plunge to camp this year. Although it was a momentous mission to get from the entrance to where we eventually set up, it was worth it in the end, thanks in part to the kind weather. and the fact that this is a delightful, small scale, family-friendly affair set in Pippingford Park, a wooded and parkland estate set in-between Uckfield and East Grinstead.
  • The Great Escape Festival 2017 - 18th-20th May 2017

    The Great Escape Festival 2017 -  18th-20th May 2017 The Great Escape Festival 2017 -  18th-20th May 2017 Another year, and another huge comedown after the exhilaration of three days of heady music, heavy bodily abuse, and heaving bodies. It’s kind of the same as a festival in a field, minus the camping, and the mud. There are more than 450 performances on over 30 stages, played out to an overall audience of 20,000. Like a traditional festival, there is plenty of schlepping from one stage to the next, re-fuelling at various points, staying up too late and getting up too early. Crucially though, almost everyone is here to actually watch and listen to music, and everyone has a real bed to head to, and a solid roof over their...
  • The Alternative Escape Festival – 18th-20th May 2017

    The Alternative Escape Festival – 18th - 20th May 2017 The Alternative Escape Festival – 18th-20th May 2017 THURSDAY This year I was off-duty from the main Great Escape Festival, leaving it in the capable hands of our growing team of writers and photographers (and writer-photographers), I instead dipped into the free festival which runs alongside the main event every year, taking over any left-over scraps of venues which the behemoth of Europe’s largest new music festival has yet to absorb. In fact, as I found myself involved in three different performances as a musician, I didn’t get too much time to explore but I did see some great bands over the three days nonetheless.
  • Together The People Festival 2016

    Together The People Festival 2016 Together The People Festival 2016 Brighton and the surrounding area has been bedevilled by the lack of a successful music festival since Stanmer Park’s Essential Festival folded its wings back in the early 2000s. Beachdown, Meadowlands, Loop et al never made it far, and many others couldn't get past the planning stages, let alone the mountain of alcohol and caffeine-fueled 'let's-organise-a-festival' conversations in pubs and cafes. Expensive things these festivals; even the very best and most well-known have to keep an ultra tight rein on costs to balance the books. The mother of them all, Glastonbury, draws a relatively small profit each and every year, relying heavily on small wages and an army of volunteers to carry it through (although it still gives a sizeable donation to charitable causes), and refusing to pay top dollar to the...
  • Love Supreme Festival - 2016

    Love Supreme Festival 2016 Love Supreme Festival - 2016 After the madness of Glastonbury (not that I went, but my sources tell me that there was a palpable sense of depression mixed with anger, for those souls so inclined, i.e. they give a shit and the shockwave of the EU Referendum, it was with some relief that I was able to get away from social media and the constant breaking news, for a jolly out to the Sussex countryside, to luxuriate in this most well-heeled festival, on one of the more rain-friendly, and visually enticing sites imaginable. While Glastonbury suffered another of its periodic bouts of flash flooding, gluey gloop, and more rain, Love Supreme, by dint of it being a week afterwards, never seems to suffer from these problems. Luck of the draw I guess, but even when it does rain, the porous chalk of the Sussex Downs sees it off in no time. This year there were, by my...
  • Elderflower Fields Festival - 2016

    Elderflower Fields Festival - 27-30 May 2016 Elderflower Fields Festival - 27th - 30th May 2016 What began as an excuse to throw a party for a wedding, has over five years grown to become a successful, small-scale festival, with an overriding emphasis on being family-friendly. This year's event sold out in advance, and looks now to have established itself for the forseeable future if that's what the organisers wish for. In one way, Elderflower is like a huge, but well organised happy camper campsite, with added entertainment. It does not rely on or pay for big and expensive acts to sell tickets (and therefore keeping its costs down). Rather, it is so geared towards children, that the emphasis is actually on them rather than adults. Adults with children generally love it because the kids are free to roam around, there are plenty of activities to do, new friendships can easily be made, and...
  • Alternative Escape - 2016

    Alternative Escape 2016 Alternative Escape - 2016 If only Brighton could be like this all year round. There’s nothing quite like flitting between the city’s venues, hearing live music bleed out onto every street. Sadly, it had to end - but not before a lot of good music was played in a lot of venues. The Alternative Escape has grown every year, and this year its lineup was a serious affair, although one journalist alone was able to take in precious little.
  • Mutations Festival - 2015

    Mutations Festival 2015 Mutations Festival – 2015 Saturday The day started strong with Brighton’s Mindofalion. The early start didn’t affect the live show one bit as brothers Archie and Jack Brewis-Laweson on guitar/vocals and drums, and friend Sam Evans on bass produced a gripping set. Their alternative rock had the audience captivated by their raw thumping beat. With clever guitar melodies created with a looping pedal, there is a lot to like about this three piece who are they definitely worth checking out, especially if you are looking for a more melodic At The Drive-In or a softer 30 Seconds To...
  • Together The People Festival - 2015

    Together The People Festival - 2015 I arrived at the festival just as a local four piece took to the second stage. Half Crown, named after the old pre-decimal coin, produced great pop songs with a rock reggae edge which mix strong vocals with rapping. I have heard their name mentioned by a few people as a band to see live, and they certainly didn’t disappoint. The frontman’s brilliant stage presence, which was well matched by the bands musical ability, won over the crowd in an instant, interacting with them and getting them to...


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