Tagged: Festival

Ones to watch at ArcTanGent

Music writer Amber is getting ready to celebrate ArcTanGent’s 5th year at Fernhill Farm, the ultimate festival for music lovers. Guaranteed to bring you the best in math-rock, alt-rock, post-rock and basically any kind of hyphenated rock with everything in between. 

With such a diverse line-up Amber has created a list of bands you cannot afford to miss.

arctangent-tshirt-text-950x1343

Thursday

Nordic Giants

Possibly the most immersive live band I have ever seen, Nordic Giants submerge you in cinema as the duo drive you through a narrative with their mesmerising soundscapes.

Heck 

Last night it hit social media that ArcTanGent would be Heck’s final show. The most hopeful and hilarious comment on the thread said ‘This is where you announce your new album called ‘The Last Show’ at ArcTanGent’ but if it isn’t this then it’s everyone’s last chance to make it count.

Friday

H09909

I got my first taste of H09909 (Horror) when they supported on The Dillinger Escape Plan’s final UK tour. I got a split lip and I was just a casual bystander. Finding itself somewhere between experimental hip hop and hardcore expect plenty of tentacle fingers and wedding dresses.

Listener 

It’s about Listener time made it to the ArcTanGent line-up, especially on the biggest stage, Arc. I have never seen Listener in such a large environment but I guarantee it will an experience to remember.

Saturday

Employed To Serve

Employed To Serve are taking over and it’s easy to hear why.  Their abrasive sound posseses each of their strengths in a way that forces crowds into each other. They are pushing the forefront of the British rock scene and are unmissable this weekend.

Tricot

The perfect mix of unpredictable patterns and intricate upbeat rhythms, Tricot are not to be missed. Live, their intensity is met seamlessly with their brand of frantic rock appearing effortless in their epic talent.

See you at the silent disco.

February 2017_V3

Top 10 Bands to catch at Reading & Leeds Festival

It’s just under a month until Reading and Leeds Festival and just glancing at this year’s line-up has got our guest music blogger Verity Vincent joining in the debate as to whether male artists are dominating festival line-ups.

With some incredible bands spread across stages large and small, Verity also shares the top ten artists she cannot wait to see this year…

Should whether music is led by a male or female voice be theoretically irrelevant? The gender lines should be blurred enough for it to matter more about the diversity and quality of music on offer than whether it comes from a man or a woman. But does the “should” transcend?

Ellie Goulding has spoken out about a lack of female peers at many festivals. But my recent experiences at festivals like 2000 Trees has been different, there was a distinct mix of powerful, female fronted bands. If you take festivals such as V Festival, which are predominantly pop focused, you’ll pretty much find a 50/50 split of male and female acts, so is it purely down to a coincidence of the genre? What bands have released new music or who’s reformed?

Looking over the Reading and Leeds poster there are some seriously powerful females on the bill, from the ultimate trio that is Haim, to The Pretty Reckless, PVRIS, Charli XCX, Anne-Marie, and feminist trailblazer Lande Hekt of Muncie Girls. Yes, male-led acts may have dominance, but aren’t we just all happy to be in the same place celebrating rock music old and new?

Here’s my top ten artists that I cannot wait to witness…

Kasabian
Kasabian’s new album ‘For Crying Out Loud’ has some incredible tracks like Twentyfourseven, Comeback Kid and their lead single, ‘You’re in Love With a Psycho’.

The Magic Gang
Ep’s One, Two and Three have all been packed with feel-good, soul warming, foot tapping loveliness. They’re a band made for creating real festival vibes. But in a cool way, not a flower crown wearing kinda way.

Blossoms
Blossoms have had quite the ride in four short years, creating an album filled with catchy yet credible tunes that have earned them a main stage top 3 slot.

Muncie Girls
After a Kerrang! Award nom last year, an Australian tour and a string of festival bookings this year, the Exeter based band continue to be on the rise.

Idles 

Ballsy, brash and Bristolian band Idles have a wonderfully uncompromising attitude when it comes to presenting their music, and theirs is a set not to be missed.

Haim 

Is there anyone that doesn’t adore Haim? How can you not? Their personalities are just as infectious as their music.

Frank Carter
Frank’s sets are often as dramatic as they are energetic. The front man doesn’t shy away from getting involved with people’s lost phones, settling fights and generally acting as an extra form of security. What will happen at Reading and Leeds? We’re more than intrigued to find out.

While She Sleeps
I distinctly remember watching While She Sleeps play a morning slot at Bestival a few years back – what a way to shake off a hangover. Headlining The Pit stage on Saturday night, they’ll be an equally perfect way to finish the night as to start the day.

What about the last two?  Liam Gallagher and Eminem. Arguably both at iconic status and possessing a back catalogue big enough to please diehard fans. How would a conversation pan out between them I wonder? A question we may never know the answer to…

Liam Gallagher

Eminem

Who made it onto your list?

There’s also a stellar offering on the comedy front including Simon Amstell, Tape Face, Katherine Ryan and Bill Bailey.
Check out the full line-up poster below and get your tickets here.

Eight Bands You Don’t Want To Miss At This Year’s Arctangent Festival

Arctangent returns for its fourth year at Fernhill Farm, celebrating the very best that math-rock, post-rock and noise-rock have to offer. With so many diverse bands on the line-up, freelance writer Mat Ombler has gathered a list of eight that you simply cannot afford to miss…

 

Nordic Giants

Nordic Giants live performance is out of this world, and their breath-taking sets have been melting the minds of their audiences since 2010. The duo incorporate visuals into their live set, performing alongside cinematic projections that provide a narrative to their songs.

Alongside these projections, Nordic Giants become a collaboration of true artistry, capable of evoking serious emotion from their audiences. It’s rare that at a festival with a crowd three thousand strong, a band could manage to wow their audience into complete silence – but Nordic Giants manage to do just that, time and time again.

Svalbard

Blackened post-rock music doesn’t get much better than this! Svalbard is a combination of black metal melodies and epic post-rock progressions, perfectly executed with the aggression you would expect from a thrash metal or punk band. Their latest release, ‘One Day All This Will End‘, is one of the finest albums I’ve had the pleasure of listening to in a long time, with not a single weak track on the album.

Three Trapped Tigers

Their combination of mad synth sounds, wacky electronics and wild drum patterns make Three Trapped Tigers a highlight of any line-up. The musical trio is a beautifully choreographed mess of intensely unique sounds, with all the energy from both the band and crowd you would expect from a set at an illegal underground rave.

Three Trapped Tigers raise the roof, basically.

Godspeed You! Black Emperor

Perhaps one of the most influential post-rock bands of all time, Godspeed You! Black Emperor headline the main stage on Friday at this year’s festival. Featuring a large ensemble of various musicians – with various percussionists and even a violin player – Godspeed You! Black Emperor promise to deliver a headline performance unlike any Arctangent Festival has seen before.

toe

Toe are a Japanese rock band from Tokyo and they’re performing an exclusive UK set at this year’s festival. They’re unlikely to be returning anytime soon, so don’t miss them, yeah?

Toe’s back-catalogue is as diverse as the festival line-up, featuring melodic instrumental sections with some beautiful vocal accompaniments in certain parts.

La Dispute

La Dispute make their debut appearance at this year’s Arctangent Festival. Jordan Dreyer’s vocals are essentially spoken word, sitting atop experimental guitar drones and muddy bass to help draw their audience into the short stories they’re telling. La Dispute’s experimental take on melodic and post-hardcore is unlike any other and it’s not to be missed.

Knifeworld

This psychedelic prog-rock band features a bassoon, alto saxophone and even a baritone saxophone, their songs usually consist of around seven or eight different instruments coming together to craft a sound that’s somewhere in-between contemporary prog bands and alternative mainstream music. There are tracks on their most recent release, ‘Bottled Out Of Eden‘, that are reminiscent of Between The Buried And Me’s ‘Colours’ masterpiece, but with the influence of more popular indie artists. If you’re a fan of progressive rock music, the recreational uses of psychedelic drugs – or perhaps both: don’t miss ‘em.

TTNG

Formerly known as This Town Needs Guns, this math-rock band from Oxford are one of the most well known bands from the math-rock scene. Their technically driven melodic guitar progressions draw influence all the way from Spanish to jazz music, and their deployment of various time signatures is enough to keep any listener on their feet – and for the right reasons.

Arctangent Festival takes place 18th- 20th of August and tickets are still available here.

art

Reading And Leeds Preview 2015

Unknown

Festivals can be the best opportunities to see bands you never thought you’d see – or discover bands you may never have given a chance. To help you out for Reading and Leeds festivals, we’ve come up with a list of bands who are about to make your weekend. And be sure to keep an eye out for our music writer Amber Carnegie who will be street spotting for our style pages. 

Beartooth

If you haven’t caught them on tour in the past year or heard them on the radio, this weekend is your chance to catch Beartooth. They’ll have you dancing around with some of their massive choruses so give them a go. Believe us, we still have dents in our shoes from the last time we saw them.

The Maccabees

We all know and love The Maccabees but with ‘Marks To Prove It’ only released last month this could be one of the first chances you get to hear those new tracks live.

Black Honey

The mysterious identities behind the band that is Black Honey have always let their music speak for themselves. Let them do that and get lost in their seductive pop this weekend.

Queen Kwong

‘Get A Witness’ is the title track of Queen Kwong’s album due out this month. With a renowned live show it will incredible to witness how this transfers to the festival stage.

Alexisonfire

We never thought we’d see Alexisonfire again so of course we’re all on some sort of pilgrimage to witness what could be a rare occurrence.

Echosmith

With an incredible array of influences coming through their tracks, Echosmith are undoubtably ones to watch at Reading and Leeds. They have this sweet pop feel with all the hazy undertones you can get lose yourself in.

And So I Watch You From Afar

If you’ve never given instrumental music a chance before this is the time to embrace it. And So I Watch You From Afar will not only blow your mind but their group vocals will have you singing your heart out at the pinnacle of their set.

To help you make it through the weekend check out our Festival Tips and download the Reading and Leeds Festival app for the best updates over the weekend.

 

Hevy Festival Diary 2015

Regarded as one of the best small festivals in the UK, Hevy Fest has come back better than ever from its 2013 cancellation. After a smaller but incredible affair in 2014 check out what happened when our music writer Amber Carnegie descended on Port Lympne for the diverse line up they whipped up for 2015. 

Thursday 14th of August

Shortly after arriving at Hevy, we soon realised that not only had we brought the wrong tent but that Camp Things & Ink was held together with worn out bamboo, wasn’t entirely waterproof and wouldn’t be around for long.

A fact we learned pretty quickly as the weekend started with some expected thunder and lightening. Lucky for us our lovely neighbours let us throw our belongings into their tents while we helped other drenched campers set up. We then escaped into the larger tents for a good wringing out.

Once we began to resemble ourselves again we headed into the arena to catch the rest of the acoustic stage. Sam Duckworth and Dave McPherson both incited sing-alongs to those who had survived the rain but it was the acoustic set from Jamie Lenman that nearly had us in tears. Reminiscent Reuben tracks like ‘Moving To Blackwater’ and ‘Let’s Stop Hanging Out’ really hit the tone for all of those brought to Hevy this year. Dave McPherson also came back out to join Lenman for ‘I Ain’t Your Boy’ that brought together the camaraderie that you cannot miss at Hevy.

Friday 15th of August

Luke keeping up the caffeine at Hevy

After we assessed Thursday’s damage and sought out breakfast we ventured into the Port Lympne Wild Animal Park. A portion of each ticket sold for Hevy goes towards The Aspinall Foundation, to help protect endangered species, and where possible return them back to the wild. With little else to do before the bands start in the afternoon it’s amazing that you are able to wonder around the park free of charge. You can also pick up an actual meal or even some Kentish Cider if you fancy it.

If that didn’t wake you up, Continents had the task of kicking off the festival from the Main Stage. Despite pretty much baking in the arena the sounds of their upcoming album got people moving and early tracks like ‘Pegasus Pegasus’ began decimating the grass in front of the stage.  There is always a place at Hevy for instrumental, post rock bands and Chon certainly proved why. Chon bring movements between the stages to a stand still with riffs that mirror vocal chords in incredible succession. Closing with ‘Perfect Pillow’ with a guitar sequence that will be riddled in your brain for weeks. We highly recommend you check them out.

Even if you’re not into it, Hacktivist certainly got the Hevy party going. If they didn’t have you with ‘Djent In Paris’ then they had us in crowd peer pressure of waving hands to ‘False Idols’. We didn’t know the words but we soon picked them up before we headed to the Third Stage where Heck were destined to make us double check we all still had our limbs. What we were not expecting is the band formally known as Baby Godzilla to induce a stage wide floorshow with the audience as props. Tracks we’d never heard before had the crowd in a frenzy and if you didn’t feel the need to sing along, you’re probably broken inside.

Heck @ Hevy

Heck At Hevy

We headed back to the Main Stage for Touché Amore for a completely different feel, the band brought this closer environment as the crowd reached over desperate to shout lyrics. This amazing wave of post-hardcore has this insane ability to unify emotions that were once overlooked or hidden. To have witnessed this at Hevy within a crowd all clearly in touch with every word was striking and completely epitomises Hevy and the love and respect everyone has for the music and its abilities there.

Once we’d all pulled ourselves back together and the iconic intro to ‘Bloodmeat’ kicked in we knew we were in the midst of Protest The Hero. Wilding riffs and lungs you will never quite believe from Rody Walker. With his renowned anecdotes dropping momentum it allowed us a chance to breathe before winding back up into techy sequences and guitars that lick through ‘Clarity’ to see the blur in front of the stage give it one last go.

The Dillinger Escape Plan then called out the sunset with the most unnatural spasms their bodies could muster with ‘Prancer’ opening up the set and the ground. ‘Milk Lizard’s grooving rhythms had us more inclined to dance than to thrash about as the band seemed more and more determined fracture themselves. Although we’ve come to expect this self inflected battering while remaining indefinably tight it’s exceptional to witness every time.

The Dillinger Escape Plan @ Hevy

The Dillinger Escape Plan At Hevy

The iconic opening riff to ‘43% Burnt’ ensued madness immediately and carried through to ‘Panasonic Youth’. The crowd completely lost their shit when vocalist Greg Puciato dove into the crowd for ‘Farewell Mona Lisa’ only to immerse back on stage as bodies flung for ‘When I Lost My Bet’. With no time we legged it over to catch the end of Fightstar’s delayed set, seven strings and all. With a feral tent that proved that Fightstar could have headlined a bigger stage they tore out their new track ‘Animal’ with a new synth sound before nailing out titans tracks like ‘Deathcar’ and their first single ‘Palahniuk’s Laughter’. As we held each other up in the swarming stage it was so reminiscent of our swinging emo fringe days that we couldn’t thank Hevy enough for putting something so awesome together.

Coheed And Cambria closed Friday’s live music by playing ‘In Keeping Secrets Of Silent Earth: 3’ in its entirety. Coheed are incomparable, the album a spectacle in itself and it didn’t stop with the album. The encore saw their latest track ‘You’ve Got Spirit Kid’ carry away the audience as the eminent ‘Welcome Home’ took over Port Lympne to show that Hevy is well and truly back.

Saturday 15th of August

Despite some technical hitches the crowd spurred Milk Teeth in some of the freshest sounds that hit Hevy. Their grunge punk rock is something not to be missed and we can’t wait to see them live again. We were then allured into a doomy tent where Hang The Bastard had incited the slugging, aching head-bangs through layers of smoke. And then as if our eyes were deceiving us (they weren’t) a fluorescent pink two piece with a triangle found its way around the Second Stage for HORSE The Band.

HORSE The Band @ Hevy

HORSE The Band at Hevy

If you had never had the pleasuring of witnessing these guys before Hevy you were certainly in for a treat. Their sweet set of insanity blew Saturday up only to be followed by The Fall Of Troy on Main Stage. They were the second band of the weekend to play an album in full so when ‘Doppelganger’ kicked off we knew were in for unchartered territory. Within the first track they were a band we regretted never getting into. Impeccable guitar work with catchy rhythms had  us all dancing. For an album played on its ten year anniversary The Fall Of Troy not only kept everything so incredibly tight but probably gained a lot of fans who wished they tuned in a long time ago.

The Get Up Kids then followed in full album suit, and although it was now getting slightly tiring it is amazing to see so many albums still have the ability to pull in such crowds. ‘Something To Write Home About’ saw people singing word for word with ‘I’ll Catch You’ holding a quiet moment over the main stage as the album closed.

Thrice At Hevy

Thrice at Hevy

Headliners Thrice come together like they have never been away. Every track fell into the next and just the intro to ‘Of Dust And Nations’ sparked frenzy. With a varied set list that saw ‘The Artist In The Ambulance’ and ‘Deadbolt’ take off as if it was the early 00’s again the entire campsite was gathered around the Main Stage.

As they closed on 2011’s ‘Anthology’ we couldn’t quite believe that it was over for another year. Hevy have brought us bands in their revival that we could have never expected, what’s for 2016 Hevy?

Did you go to Hevy Fest? What did you think?

Festival Tips

Our music writer Amber Carnegie gives you her top tips for surviving festival season… alongside photos from her own festivalling experiences… 

So when it comes to festival essentials, you’ve probably already got the tent down – and hopefully your ticket – but what about those added extras that could stop you making those fatal festival virgin errors? Read on, so you don’t end up stranded, hungover and soaking this summer…

 

admin-ajax (3)

Groezrock at sunset

Keep Those Toes Dry (and safe)

If you’re festivalling in the UK, you should never expect sun for the entire festival. You can wear wellies to keep those toes dry, but to keep them warm and safe when in a mosh pit you should really invest in a pair of Dr Martens. When you’re jumping around a field and everyone else is basically wearing  rubber socks, your toes will be toasty… you’ll have made every single penny spent on those DMs back.

Keep Connected (that doesn’t always mean an Insta selfie)

If you still have your good old brick phone, I suggest taking that with you to use – it shouldn’t need charging the whole time you’re there (remember the days of phones lasting three days on one charge?!). But if you’re uber-trendy and like to use social media to organise your whereabouts, invest in a portable charger. Although most festivals have power banks to charge up, this is a quicker cheaper version that you can carry in your handbag… You can pick them up online for under a fiver and they let you cling on to every last per cent of that extra charge.

Carb Up (and keep up)

You are entering a world of overpriced food, so it’s better to be prepared and carb up for those all-day drinking sessions, rather than spend all of your money on chips that add up to more than the cost of your ticket. Cereal bars, crisps and my all-time favourite brioche aren’t going to leak or spill anywhere and will keep you going while you pound your liver.

 

admin-ajax (4)

ArcTanGent

Keep Clean (you don’t always need to shower)

In a field with sweaty bodies and portable loos, hand sanitizer is going to be your best friend – do not let it leave your side. We know you’re roughing it, but no one wants to get poorly mid festival! Having your own loo roll is always a bonus and a wet wipe shower will never go a miss. And if that isn’t enough, don’t forget that typically aerosols are not allowed into the campsites so roll-on deodorant is a must. If dry shampoo is on the no list, pack a little bottle of talc to perk up your sopping mop.

Ear Plugs (your ears will thank us)

Ear plugs will not hinder the music and you will thank us when you can still hear those same tones decades from now. Getting a decent set of molded ear plugs could make all the difference.

Torch (this is a must-pack item)

Weaving through tents in the dark may make you feel like a naff spy navigating a laser maze, but the second you trip on a rope and fall into a tent you won’t be making any festival friends. A torch will help you locate your tent and may even help you find the right end of your sleeping bag.

 

shots

Hevy Fest

Safety First (always)

Aside from the one person in every group who has the whole first aid kit with them, you probably want to make sure you’ve got your own supply of pain killers, plasters and even a few Berocca to help that hangover taste a bit better. You also don’t want to wake up to find a stranger spooning you and feel that instant pang of fear. Pack a few condoms and don’t let yourself get caught out.

And if the sun does come out… remember to protect those tattoos, which you’ve spent your life collecting, with some decent sun cream. And never let yourself get dehydrated. Sunstroke is not fun, so do not forget to drink water. You can push through a hangover but paying to miss bands is never fun.

Duct Tape

Because you never know when duct tape might just save the day… you’ll just have to trust us on this one…

What festivals are you going to? And will you be taking any of Amber’s essentials?