Pushing the parameters of what is jovially known amongst us music journalists as ‘festival season’ lies Boundary Brighton. Boasting an impressive line-up for its inaugural year, this one-day dance music extravaganza definitely made its mark. Exhibiting an impressive list of DJ’s and acts across four stages, the festival collaborated with clubs and venues across Brighton alongside party innovators Elrow, music publication Mixmag and the infamous LWE to curate something pretty brilliant to witness.
The main stage combined one of Brighton’s most beloved venues, Concorde, with the go-to publication for all things clubbing and dance music; Mixmag. Artists such as Bondax and Groove Armada (DJ set) took to the stage, as well as the energetic Gentleman's Dub Club, a delightful surprise, whose combination of ska and dubstep, suited appearance and Yorkshire accents over reggae vocals, brought an incredible live show. A DJ set by Wilkinson closed the stage down with an immense stamina and an energetic collection of tunes.
Notorious party-starters Elrow teamed up with Brighton’s The Arch – formerly known as Digital – to create a colourful psychedelic stage. If you haven't yet heard of Elrow, that's about to change, as the Barcelonian party enthusiasts have been putting on nights left right and centre; most notably the Ibiza classic Space. The Vibrant tent hosted the likes of Solardo, Seth Troxler, and Richy Ahmed all cocooned in a tent trying to be Woodstock, yet sounding pretty far from it.
One of London’s biggest underground events organisers LWE teamed up with Brighton club Patterns; still relatively new on the club scene since the death of Audio not too long ago (may it rest in peace) and I must say, whoever had the idea to build a fake London Warehouse as the set up for an inside stage was a genius. Entering the ‘building’ transported you into a club-like arena, where the likes of Jackmaster, Joy Orbison wowed the crowd, as well as sets from Patterns residents themselves. Last but not least, Boundary also set it’s very own bandstand. The smallest stage but still able to attract a crowd, the masked man Jaguar Skills played a hit-heavy set, albeit sounding a little rusty.
The man of the hour award definitely goes to Craig David and his new DJ project TS5. After the build up of one of the biggest revivals in garage history, Craig David’s comeback is definitely going strong. Though rumours of TS5 being a little rusty are still floating around, by the time the headliner hit the stage you could tell he’s cleaned up his act and his setlist was selectively fine tuned to please everyone from the 90’s kids in the crowd to old school garage fanatics. Being a fan as I am, I must say I’m probably a little biased but listening to Fill Me In and Seven Days live was enough to complete my summer of festivalling and if the attitude of my fellow punters in that crowd was anything to go by, I’m guessing they’d agree with me.
Craig David/ TS5 headlining the main stage.
This being said you can tell Boundary is still finding its feet. Though it’s had some great ideas and, in my opinion, had a pretty successful launch, it could do with a few tweaks. There’s no specific wristband system so punters are let in with no chance of re-entry if they leave, which would be fine if it didn’t make for a very confusing entry, there are no maps or clear labels as to which stage is which and punters have to check paper set times to make sure they catch who they want to see, It’s also pretty small. Though it held a 20,000 capacity, the festival site felt similar to a village fete making the four stages feel pretty squashed together. Nevertheless, in a way, this worked as a positive, as it promised big, energetic yet friendly crowds for each stage.
The acts themselves put on a great show, but with the renowned names on the bill and the brand of Brighton nightlife surpassing the name of the festival itself, this is hardly surprising. Though despite each stage’s own collaboration, all the music did feel a bit samey, samey. DJ’s and dance music aren’t always all too different and you come to appreciate the skills of each act you see, as well as their ability to captivate a crowd, but maybe next year it would be good to focus on a specific subgenre for each stage instead of mixing it up across the board. Do this, and Boundary could quite possibly become the next dance/club pilgrimage of the summer.
All images provided by www.visionseven.co.uk for Boundary Brighton.
A Great British downpour lashed over festival goers as ponchos and true grit became standard for the first day of Sundown Festival.
“It's raining so hard my fingers are wrinkly,” bewailed one glitter-sodden music fan who said it looked like she had sat in the bath for an hour.
Yes. The rain was bad.
But remarkably the ground stayed mostly mud-free and the musical maelstrom kept the crowd in good spirits as three stages blasted out a mix of urban, pop and dance.
Kicking off proceedings on the main stage were Cambridge rapper Big Heath and Norfolk neo soul artist Mullally who stepped in at the last minute to replace Emmi.
Skipping on to the stage afterwards was a total style switch with trio MO who DJ Mistajam has described as the only girl group you need worry about.
They were followed by the earthy, jazz infused voice of Espa, then Kiko Bunn, who brought a good times, deep dance reggae sunshine vibe to the day.
Next up the ever youthful Ms Dynamite, whose energy shone as strongly as when she first topped the charts in 2003 ,with her hit single signature tune which heard the crowd sing in unison – Miss Dynamite-ee-ee!
Becky Hill stood out for her effortless performance show-casing her mind blowingly powerful voice, especially during Wilkinson's anthem Afterglow.
She is a truly likable artist with a great energy and simplicity of style.
Kano showed why his fifth album Made In The Manor has become a high seller with an edgy performance that ripped up the crowd followed by the unmistakable grin and good times set of tunes from original UK rapper Dizzee Rascal.
Jess Glynne stormed the stage with a set that engrossed the sodden masses encompassing her five number one UK singles and showing why she is a rising star on the other side of the pond as well as in the UK where she is preparing for a 10 date arena tour in the Autumn.
Duo Chase and Status closed the night with a show stopper of lights and kicking drum n bass as part of their summer of festival headlining while also producing their much anticipated third album.
By Sunday ,the Norfolk Showground venue, filled with 40,000 fans, had transformed thanks to some of the last of this summer's rays rolling through the clouds.
BB Diamond broke the musical ice on main stage with an easy set of dance tunes followed by an absolute whirlwind of energy that is Imani Williams.
This 16 year old is going places with her passion, unmistakable voice and style.
Signed to Sigala's label it is clear to see why he has snapped her up with her timed to perfection dance moves and big voice.
Next up was rapper Yungen who is among a new wave of rap/grime acts sweeping the British music scene.
He was followed by girl trio Stooshe whose high energy was a big hit with fans.
Anne Marie brought her big vocals to the stage where she compellingly lost herself in the moment and was enthralling to watch.
DJ Sigala followed with a big impact live set embracing a Caribbean theme with a guest slot by Imani followed by Krept & Konan who powered in, packing a mighty grime punch with lyrics that screamed pure London boy genius.
A turn around style switch followed, thanks to X factor contestant Fleur East who was a massive hit with the crowd. Think Beyonce and Tina Turner, blend them up and you get some kind of idea of her style, and panache. She was a joy to photograph with a star quality performance.
Next up was Years and Years – watching singer Olly Alexander is like seeing somebody emotionally throw their entire life and a handful of glitter into every word. Riveting.
Closing the festival was American star Jason Derulo who left the crowd in no doubt about why he is such a hugely successful global act.
This man can sing, he can dance and with a big beaming smile his performance was incredible to watch – not least when he picked out a girl from the screaming crowd and brought her up to dance on stage
A great performer with slick backing dancers and musicians to boot.
Over in the red and blue tents weekend highlights were David Rodiggan, who smashes it every time he takes to the stage, Jaguar Skills and his Asian babe dancers, Dimension, Red Light, Goldie and Wilkinson with thanks to stage hosting by Ministry of Sound, Defected In The House, UKF and the drum n bass arena.
Laurence Bagnall, one of the festival organsiers said: “This has been one of the biggest Sundowns yet.
“The weather failed to dampen the good vibes, the sun came out for some of the biggest acts and with no incidents to report the festival would like to thank everybody for their ongoing support.”
The countdown is on to Sundown Festival 2016 in what is becoming renowned as the music happening to see out the last rays of the summer season.
With a third stage added at the Norwich venue for this year, there are more acts, more music and more choice.
An easy vibe, friendly crowd and variety are key in this urban, dance, pop and drum n bass mix and this year is no exception.
Warming up on Friday night is the big top campers party with Radio 1 DJ Danny Howard, best known for presenting his show Dance Anthems, which kicks off proceedings with stomping tunes until the small hours.
The festival proper begins on Saturday with a headliner classic of Chase & Status after main players including chart topper Jess Glynne, UK rapper Kano, British rap favourite Dizzee Rascal, future pop sensation Becky Hill and respected British rapper and politically motivated icon Ms Dynamite,
The Defected in the House stage includes Sonny Fodera, Sam Divine and DISKT while over in the UKF stage are mash up legend Jaguar Skills, reggae DJ pioneer David Rodigan, My Nu Leng and MC Dread.
Sunday fires off in all directions in the musical maelstrom that is Sundown with a main stage headliner of Jason Derulo. He takes to the stage after acts including Years and Years, grime duo Krept and Kronan, breakthorugh X factor star Fleur East and Sigala Live.
Over at the second tent the stage is set today by global dance brand Ministry of Sound with headliner Amine Edge and Dance, Redlight, Blonde and Low Steppa among the acts.
The third tent on Sunday becomes the drum n bass arena with crowd pleaser Wilkinson, Friction, the ever popular Goldie, Warning favourite Hazard, Dimension, Dillinja and Culture Shock.
Alongside it all throw in some fairground rides, stalls and a crowd that never feels overwhelmingly large making it both a perfect season closer for die hard festival fans or the ideal place for teenagers to cut their teeth in a safe and manageable sized festival world.
Either way, enjoy. The line up is randomly eclectic – but is sure to keep those dancing feet happy all weekend.
TICKETS: Sundown Festival 2016 is from Friday September 2 to Sunday 4. Tickets start at £46.75 for a day pass up to £121 for a weekend pass with camping at the Norfolk Showground venue.
The clock is ticking and The Future is very nearly here. With just over two weeks until Bestival 2016’s psychedelic adventures begin we give you even more amazing musical greats who will take you on wild, harmonic excursions and keep you reaching for the lasers long into the night at the greatest party on the planet this September on the Isle of Wight.
Rob da Bank says: “The Future is fast approaching and I’m super-excited about all the new explorers who will be joining us on our journey into the unknown. From dance music legend and big Sunday Best favourite Joe Smooth and sublime selector Jaguar Skills, to hot tips Ashworth, Kid Canaveral and Nimmo there’s a little bit of something for everyone, just the way we like it!”
Ensuring dancefloor devastation of a truly futuristic kind, we are delighted to announce that super-beat ninja Jaguar Skills will be stepping up to the ones and twos at Robin Hill for a trademark tear up that is destined to take us to a new dimension in space and time. We’ll also have performances from musical polymath Ashworth, our old muckers Bugged Out with their Little Bugger, seductive sonic types Cirque Du Soul, classic house legend Joe Smooth, wigged-out wonder Justin Robertson Scottish alt-poppers Kid Canaveral, infectious disco divas Nimmo, Chicago don Roy Davis Jr, genre-skirting trio Strong Asian Mothers and vowel-phobic punks SWMRS.
Don’t miss Manchester rave legends A Man Called Adam, Canadian folk troubadour Aidan Knight, slick pop siblings Ardyn, Strobewax co-founder Bobby O’Donnell and Oxford’s own Burt Cope. And expect to be blown away by CC Smugglers, Deaf by Disco, DJ GG, Dr Sid, Ella and the Blisters, Feeling Gloomy’s Bowie Tribute, Full Nelson, Ghettospheric, Graceland, Greg’s Greats, Ian Void, Idiot Savant, Jay-L and Jules and Lisa.
Plus, there will be even more sonic marauding from the likes of Kaf-Tan, Kemback, Lucy Cait, Martin Davies, Miss Chameleon, Mojo Filter, Nick Gabriel, Noble Jacks, Not Saffron, Pete Kosanovich, Rev Milo Speedwagon, Roy Davis Jr, Stevie Wonderland, Tasty Lopez & Karistocat, The Beau Bow Belles, The Black Kat Boppers, The Caulfield Beats, The Men That Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing, The Shellac Collective, The Tom Seals Band, Thomas Urv, Timo Garcia, Tom Colborn, Tony Tunes, Uncle Junior, Vote Pedro, Vula Viel and Ziriguidum Samba Band.
Booking your place at Bestival couldn’t be easier with our amazing £25 deposit scheme. For just £25 (plus booking fee) you can secure your Bestival ticket at Phase Three prices now.
Pay the balance by 1st September and join us we venture into The Future with headline sets from Major Lazer, The Cure, Sean Paul & Wiz Khalifa and even more amazing music from Bastille, Years & Years, Katy B, Hot Chip, Carl Cox, Diplo, Fatboy Slim, Skepta, Craig David & so much more!
And, if you’re having trouble persuading your friends to come along to our luminous dreamworld, dial Rob da Bank’s Decision line now on 0845 388 BEST (0845 388 2378) for just 5p plus your standard rate per minute, and let the man himself twist their arms.
Working with tireless passion and meticulous detail the team behind brand new music festival Boundary Brighton add a star-studded cast of acts to their debut show. With the bar set high, new acts includeCraig David, Groove Armada, Jackmaster, Richy Ahmed, Jaguar Skills and many more, to dance-out the summer at Stanmer Park on Saturday 17th September 2016.
Craig David has taken 2016 by storm and will headline the festival with TS5; expect a forward-thinking trip to nostalgia; with a heavy emphasis on party. Expect an eclectic mix of bangers from old school anthems and future classics. Commenting on the show, Craig David said "I can't wait to bring 'TS5' to Boundary Brighton! Trust me it's going to go off big time!"
Groove Armada will bring one of their famous DJ sets to the first event. Constantly moving and evolving you can expect a set that goes through the very best In house music.
Jackmaster has a mercurial ear for making people dance, breaking down the barriers between fun, underground and commercial, he'll always leave you with a smile on your face.
When Richy Ahmed is on a lineup, you know the party is going to have some heavy heat. Having earnt his stripes curating some of the DC-10 lineups in Ibiza, he's become a trusted ear within house and techno.
One of the most naturally gifted DJs on the planet, Jaguar Skills is insane to watch when he's in full flow. Tweaking every single knob on the mixer, his technical wizardry puts others to shame. From rock to rave, hip-hop to rap; he'll be mixing it all up with ninja skills.
Iron Dread, the righteous rhyming Lioness will bring her junglist flow to Congo Natty's set. A proper party starter she'll bring a touch of carnival to Stanmer Park.
Boundary is all about doing things a little differently, so we've called on the eccentricity of Bob Kerr and his Whoopee Band, a mad cap jazz outfit formed in 1967. They're as brilliant as they are utterly insane. They are joined by Mr Wilson's Second Liners – A New Orleans band are bubbling over with serotonin infused 90's rave classics. An anarchic extravaganza, bursting with colour and sound, rallying impromptu raves at every turn.
Toni Varga has built a career on connecting with the audience, which has made him a staple on the Elrow lineups globally. He'll be bringing his experiential electronic rhythms to the Elrow stage.
With previously announced acts including Seth Troxler, Wilkinson, Bondax, Jungle, Snake Hips, Toddla T, Tom Trago, Gentleman't Dub Club, Submotion Orchestra and Congo Natty, Boundary Brighton's debut show will offer a vibrant array of music to keep festival-goers on their toes and dancing throughout the day.
With further surprises yet to come, presale and first release have completely sold out with second release tickets running low.
With its first round of artists already released, including Jurassic 5, Gentleman’s Dub Club and Foreign Beggars, now the festival introduces more acts taking over Bromyard in July.
The feisty Imelda May has a truly unique vocal talent, inspired by the sounds of jazz infused with rockabilly. The rise and rise of Imelda has been unstoppable since the release of her first studio album Love Tattoo in 2009. The Number 1 Mayhem followed in 2012 and Tribal in 2014. Imelda and her band have been touring non-stop around the world; she is a stellar performer who makes her Nozstock debut headlining on Sunday, bringing the festival to a rousing climax. Touching down in the Hidden Valley, the festival welcomes the almighty ska-reggae powerhouse, The Skints. The guys have been fusing reggae, ska, grime and hip hop since 2007 to create an incomparable sound and bring a wild dynamic to Nozstock.
Honing his craft for the last 20 years, Jaguar Skills has kept a mysterious edge to his character with details of his real name, age and home town left largely unconfirmed. He has been responsible for some of the most exciting musical projects of the past few years, centered around producing stunning mixes which have festivals and clubs partying to his genre-crossing sounds. Known as “the King of Jungle", Goldie is an artist whose creativity knows no bounds. He was a graffiti and album cover artist before he started performing; from a MBE to over 20 years as a Metalheadz lynch-pin, Goldie is one of the UK’s most celebrated music artists and a cultural icon revered for his productions and DJing. From their adopted home of Bristol, where early reggae, drum 'n' bass and dubstep pioneers from Massive Attack to Portishead were informing their cultural history, My Nu Leng understand the heritage and importance of bass music in the city. The celebrated duo are known for their blistering sets and dark, smouldering vibes, heavy on mood but always danceable.
Many more live acts have been announced for Nozstock. Buster Shuffle effortlessly fuse Cockney ska/pop and lyrics that are guaranteed to make you laugh, with songs about crafty cats and messy divorces. The Lounge Kittens are a cheeky, glamorous and geeky trio, spanning rock, punk, ska, pop, soul, metal, dance and grunge to sublime party-time effect. Also at the party is the Mercury-nominated King Kong Company. The Irish dance band have performed alongside the likes of Orbital and Paul Oakenfold; their sound can be likened to the brass section and heavy bass of Dreadzone mixed with the hypnotic rhythm of the Chemical Brothers. Benjamin Yellowitz is a young singer songwriter who takes acoustic roots to new levels, influenced by RnB and the darker side of pop. Subculture Sage bring pure hip-hop vibes to Nozstock, as party-starters of the finest pedigree and the old skool DJ with vibes for miles, Uncle Dugs makes a welcome return to The Cubicles. Further new live acts announced include Idles, Anchorsong, Funke and The Two Tone Baby, J-Man, Seas of Mirth, Foreign Affairs, Cousin Kula, Lobster, Adam Scriven, Mr Tea and The Minions, Junior Bill, Black Thistles, Black Salvadore and Cherryshoes.
Nozstock’s original dance arena is a former bull pen and milking parlour, and Sika Studios are returning to host. The UK’s top underground hip-hop, grime, rave, graffiti and clothing family are making a very welcome return, with an epic assembly of talent descending on Bromyard including Klashnekoff,Devilman and a RLD Records showcase. Friday sees The Blast return to Nozstock, with their multi genre sounds. Their line up includes President T, Sir Spyro and Nastee Boi. Psytrance stalwarts Tribe of Frog have also announced their headliners; OOOD and Illegal Machines whilst in The Swinging Gardens of Babylon electro swing heavyweight Dutty Moonshine will be taking up headline duties.
Over in Laughing Stock, the self-styled Henning Wehn is the German comedy ambassador to the U.K., a hilarious TV and radio regular who skewers the British way of life with aplomb. The teutonic comedian blends self-mockery and nationalistic superiority to great effect. He’s joined by the outlandish and eccentric Phil Kay, who has become something of a Nozstock regular and the man described by British Theatre Guide as the “leading hidden master of modern British comedy" Richard Herring. Returning after last year’s extravaganza, Mash Cinema present a host of cultural videos and ancient references featuring The Power In Our Hands, The Jungle Book, Nosferatu, Nanook Of The North, Hydro The Film, London Calling: Shorts, Nothing Can Turn Into A Void, Sell Off – The Abolition Of Your NHS and The Adventures Of Prince Ahmed.
Set on a beautiful working farm in the heart of Herefordshire, the reassuringly welcoming and independent event has evolved from 50 friends at the inaugural gathering and flourished into an intimate musical odyssey. Joining the dots between pop, ska, folk, funk, soul, indie, drum and bass, psytrance and a whole lot more, plus interactive adventures for big and small kids of all ages, Nozstock is a playground for everyone, from seasoned festival goers to newbies setting out for their first time. This year’s theme is Wonders of the Ancient World. Nozstock embraces a whole family festival experience from beginning to end, and the Children’s space is a friendly, welcoming environment for both parents and little ones alike.
Live line up so far: Jurassic 5, Imelda May, Foreign Beggars, Gentleman’s Dub Club, Slamboree, The Skints, Hot 8 Brass Band, Buster Shuffle, Professor Elemental, Split Prophets, Dr Syntax + Pete Cannon, Son of Dave, Tankus The Henge, Solo Banton + The Upper Cut Band, The Lounge Kittens, Houdini Dax, Kagoule, CC Smugglers, Eva Lazarus, Harleighblu, King Kong Company, Benjamin Yellowitz, The Lovely Eggs, Jenna + The Gs, Mystro + Cut La Vis, Shanty, Subculture Sage, Youth Man, Idles, Anchorsong, Funke and The Two Tone Baby, J-Man, The Stiff Joints, Seas of Mirth, Foreign Affairs, Cousin Kula, Cantaloop, Lobster, Steve Strong, Pink Diamond Revue, Collective 43, Calm Like A Riot, Rosebud, Desert Boots, Adam Scriven, Mr Tea and The Minions, Junior Bill, John, Castles, Black Thistles, October Drift, Doppelganger, William Poyer, Black Salvadore, Cherryshoes, Voes, Keto, Circe’s Diner, CW Jones, Mumbleman, Andy Jones, Gold Thing, As Mamas, Brooklin, Paul Spry, Samuel Wulf.
DJ line up so far: Jaguar Skills. Friction ft. Linguistics, Goldie, My Nu Leng, Dub Phizix + Strategy, DJ Marky & MC GQ, Dimension, The Prototypes, Rene LaVice + Stapleton, Ulterior Motive b2b Jubei, JFB, Teddy Killerz, Rockwell, Randall, Uncle Dugs, Xtrah b2b Stealth, Channel One, OOOD, Illegal Machines, Amoss, Octo Pi, Sam Redmore, Beatwell, Scope, Dex, Modify Perspective, Funky Navigation, Remidy M.C, Trafic M.C, Sika Studios present: Klashnekoff, Devilman, Sox, Trilla, The Otha Guys (Wordsmiff + Spitfire), Tenchoo, Jibbarish, Omus One, 420 + Chedeye Knights, SkinzMann + Guests, Bonafyde, Fiyahman, Flash Harry, Boogieman, Snoopy Dubz, King Bracket, Don’t Flop Entertainment Showcase, Leaf Dog + BVA + Smellington Piff + Jack Jetson (RLD Records Showcase), The Skuff + Inja Show ft. Stakka Lyrics + Bee 109, Team Dreebs, Datkid + Guests, DJBig Mikee + Guests, Katch Pyro, E-Coli, C3B, Osh Kosh, Verbal Highz, Aristocrats, Tea Unit, Ash The Author, Dirt Bagginz, Lean In The Evening, SWMS, Culture Vultures, The Blast takeover featuring: Sir Spyro, President T, Riz La Teef, Hi5Ghost + Boofy, Nastee Boi, BlazeyBodynod, Jaydrop, FireManSam, TS2W, Koast, Electric Ballroom Promotions takeover featuring; Dutty Moonshine, Freear, Jenova Collective, Mister Trick, Basschimp, Velocity Raptor, M.O.B, Jaxon, Stick ‘n’ Mix, Yodelling Sheep, The Lost Girls, Big In The Gambia featuring: C-Yoonit, Ewan Hoozami AKA Tropical Thunder, DJ Fonz, Dex.
Comedy, theatrics, workshops and cinema so far: Laughing Stock Comedy featuring Henning Wehn, Ricahrd Herring, Phil Kay, Jayde Adams, Joe Davies, Jim Dale; Velveteen Valley Cabaret; Bantam of the Opera Theatre; Spare Room Arts’ Little Wonderland featuring Let’s Go Fly A Kite, What Did The Romans Ever Do For Us, Walk Like an Egyptian, The Hanging Gardens of Nozstock, Aztec Sundials, Marvelous Mayan Masks, Bandhani Tie Dye, Fabulous Festival Fashions, Greek Pots, Magic Lanterns, Creative Corner, Family Yoga, Story Time; Clik Clik’s Cabinet of Lost Secrets; Mash Cinema present Wrong Directions featuring The Power In Our Hands, The Jungle Book, Nosferatu, Nanook Of The North, Hydro The Film, London Calling: Shorts, Nothing Can Turn Into A Void, Sell Off – The Abolition Of Your NHS, The Adventures Of Prince Ahmed; Tent of Temporary Thought including RikTheMost, Matt Cummins, Jack MacMillan Amy Acre; Walkabout including BallzOut Circus, Knaive Theatre presents Dreamspeakers, Sunken Circus/Groove Yard Collective present Organised Mess, and Threadbare Jugglers presents A Commedia Del’Arte Promenade, Naomi Wood and friends present Egyptian Goddess, Glitter Culture present Mothers Who Like To Funk, Territories present Mothers Who Like To Funk, Roseanna Skikun presents Interactive Music Workshops, London Humanist Choir present Glory Hallelujah – There Is No God, Circo Inferno, Scrubbers, Ras King Bobo I, Suzy Conrad present Gigtron, Hummadruz present Funtasia, Geofest Collective, Golden Lotus Archery, Uncollective unconscious, Orly Phillips Aerial Silk; Chicken Cow Café; Captivating Crafts featuring: Blacksmith Worskhop, Recycled Copper Wire Bracelets, Jewellery Workshop, Willow Weaving. Yeleni Healing Area, Folk Jam, MyElla Sustainable Textiles.
Sundown Festival returns to Norfolk Showground in Norwich for a fourth year with a huge line-up of the biggest and best names in contemporary music. Delivering a mix of the most sought after names from all corners of the pop, urban and dance music landscape, Sundown brings together everything that is vital in music right now for an amazing live music experience. This year the festival expands even further adding a third stage and collaborating with some of the most revered brands in underground music.
In five years Jason Derulo has risen to one of the best-selling, radio-dominating pop and urban artists of the day, selling over 50 million singles worldwide and racking up over two billion views on YouTube and one billion plays on Spotify. Headlining on the Sunday, fans can expect a huge show featuring the likes of ‘Talk Dirty’, ‘Wiggle’, ‘Trumpets’, ‘Whatcha Say’ and many more. With one huge headliner still to be announced this promises to be the biggest year for Sundown yet.
With five UK number 1 singles to her name including her collaboration with Clean Bandit on huge Grammy Award winning hit ‘Rather Be’, Jess Glynne is one of the UK’s brightest stars. She will undoubtedly have the Sundown crowd singing along to a hit laden set whilst London hip hop and grime hero Dizzee Rascal will bring his signature party sound to the Showground.
Years & Years were the big crossover success story of 2015 and their up- tempo brand of synth-pop spawned huge chart hits such as ‘King’ and ‘Desire’ and in Olly Alexander the band have a genuine, bona-fide pop star. Also performing will be Fleur Eastwho has become a household name since competing on X-Factor and released one of the biggest tracks of 2015 in ‘Sax’.
A world famous name in house music Defected Records will host the second stage on the Saturday with renowned party startersSam Devine, Sonny Fodera and DJ S.K.T. Get ready to raise those hands and party as one of the world’s most loved house music parties keeps the Sundown masses dancing all night long.
Undeniable masters of bass UKF are the Hosts for Stage 3 and proudly present a dual headline show featuring Jaguar Skillsshowcasing why he is the ultimate DJ ninja and the legendary David Rodigan MBE bringing the sound of dancehall and reggae to the East Coast. Fast rising Black Butter up and comers My NuLeng will keep it deep and on point.
Dance music royalty Ministry Of Sound will be presenting the second stage on the Sunday with heavy bass courtesy of French production duo AmineEdge and DANCE, genre blurring Bristolian and Lobster Boy head honcho Redlight and serious bass head Low Steppa all taking to the decks.
The legendary Drum and Bass Arena celebrate a huge 20 years in the game this year and will host chart topper Wilkinsonwhose anthem ‘Afterglow’ was an instant classic, Radio 1’s d&b don and Shogun Audio boss Friction and the classic jungle sounds of DJ Hazard.
With eight weeks to go until the Festival gates open, the line-up for the Alternative Stage at Reading & Leeds has been announced. With tickets for both sites still available there’s never been a better time to buy a ticket. On top of the already huge line-up including headlinersMumford and Sons, Metallica and The Libertines comes a host of the best in comedy and alternative talent from the UK and beyond plus the annual after-hours takeover from Transgressive Records.
Heading up proceedings on the comedy front is TV favourite Milton Jones, whose regular appearances on ‘Mock The Week’ along withmultiple Radio 4 shows has made him the leader of the pack when it comes to deadpan comedy. With sidesplitting one-liners aplenty, his Reading & Leeds performance is not to be missed. Bringing the jokes outside of the 140 character limit, Rob Delaney will also be making appearances at Reading & Leeds, proving his worth as an acclaimed stand up comedian after finding fame through making jokes on Twitter. Also heading for Leeds will be Adam Buxton of BBC6 Music fame who will perform his BFI London show BUG. TV joker Russell Kane will also be bringing his hugely popular brand of comedy to the festival, offering a rare chance to see the funnyman outside of the huge venues he’s already playing around the country.
With a line-up also including the brilliant ‘Stand Up For The Week’ regular and star of BBC’s Twenty TwelveSara Pascoe and Canadian Comedy star Katherine Ryan who was a breakout star on Live At The Apollo both of whom who you’ll have seen on Never Mind The Buzzcocks, QI, Have I Got News For You and Mock The Week. They are joined by wild haired standup and Virtually Famous TV star Seann Walsh, fast rising UK star Daniel Sloss and ‘Show Me The Funny’ finalist Tiffany Stevenson, The Alternative Stage is truly one of the must see parts of the festival.
The comedy bill expands even further with the delightfully cutting Stephen K Amos, the hugely inventive Abandoman, Radio 1 star Tom Deacon, the man from TV’s Uncle and Heavy Entertainment; Nick Helm, panel-show favourite the hilarious Holly Walsh, the fearlessly funnySuzi Ruffell, metalhead Andrew O’Neill, comedian and captain of ITV’s Reality Bites Joel Dommett, online superstar, fantastic comic and Beyoncé enthusiast Luisa Omielan, impractical joker Paul McCaffrey,Viral Tap and Xtra Factor star Matt Richardson, Edinburgh 2014 Best Newcomer Award winner Alex Edelman, BBC regular and break out star Dane Baptiste, Magician and Comic just returned from dazzling Las Vegas the side-splittingly funny Piff The Magic Dragon, sketch icons Wit Tank, fast-rising star David Morgan the newly announced co-host of ITV’s SafeWord, and finally everyone’s favourite from Channel 4’s Mr Drew’s School for Boys teacher and rapper, Mark Grist.
The famous Alternative Stage is far more than just another festival comedy tent though, as it bills some of the best in forward thinking music and spoken word. Fast gaining a name as one of the UK’s most vital talents after appearing on the BBC Sound of 2015 longlist, George The Poet will be bringing his incredible, realistic, unafraid hybrid of spoken word and hip hop to the festival, which is sure to be an unforgettable moment of the weekend. Another huge name joining the bill is Jaguar Skills who will be spinning some of his most notable, eclectic, multi-genre mixes, alongside London-based electronica and Techno producer Max Cooper who is making his Leeds Festival debut.
On top of this, Transgressive’s annual takeover brings together another hotly anticipated late-night line-up to Reading & Leeds. Fresh after celebrating their 10th anniversary at the festival last year, the independent label is bringing another specially curated bill that is their biggest yet. Hi-jacking the Saturday and Sunday nights in Leeds, the stage will run from 9.30pm until late, featuring a host of emerging and established talent throughout the weekend. Grime hero Wiley will be bringing his fantastic and ferocious live show to the tent in the wake of his critically acclaimed album Snakes and Ladders, released at the end of 2014 to huge fanfare. Looking to the future stars of the genre, Novelist will be also be making an appearance, while the likes of Jackmaster, Madame X and DJ Target will get crowds moving throughout the weekend.
Transgressive will be taking over Reading by bringing Dj-ing talent to a Silent Disco in the Alternative Stage courtesy of Alt J, Palma Violets,Peace and BBC Radio 1's Huw Stephens and Jen Long, which looks set to be nothing short of spectacular.
All of this sits alongside parties from Buttoned Down Disco and a series of extra special DJ sets from The Libertines’ Gary Powell and The Kooks’ Hugh Harris for Propaganda.
With over 25 stages, revolutionary soundsystems, zombie love-ins, psychedelic woodland adventures, 24-hour free haircuts, and a host of dazzling new attractions, Bestival’s Summer of Love is already looking pretty damn fit. But as ever, we want to get everyone we love involved, including this rather sultry bunch of musical marvels that will have you rockin’ Robin Hill all weekend long this September 10-13.
Love commando Rob da Bank says: “I’m well excited with this new batch of acts we’re announcing tonight. With so many identikit festivals about with similar acts and bills I’m proud that 12 years on we don’t go with the flow. If the indie amazingness of Drenge isn’t your bag then grimy faceslaps from Skepta and Wiley might be, and if you’re insane and don’t like the legendary junglist brilliance of Roni Size and his live Reprazent show then perhaps, just perhaps, you’ll be singing ‘to me, to you, to me, to you’ whilst dancing in a pair of ill-fitting tropical shorts to the Chuckle Brothers. No matter what, there’s plenty more fish in the sea to come, as our Summer of Love really starts to heat up. See you down the front.”
Bringing on the love with big fat beats, we’ll have main stage appearances from grime pioneer Wiley, who completely smashed it as our secret guest in 2012, plus the unstoppable skank machine, Dub Pistols.
Dub Pistols legend Barry Ashworth commented: “The Highlight of the year for us will always be playing Bestival, this year we are back on the main stage, it doesn’t get bigger than that, and if that’s not enough you can always catch me spinning tracks and drinking in the Sunday Best Cardboard Record Shop! There’s only one Bestival!”
Not quite true, Barry, there are two Bestivals, but we know what you mean! Big love to all our Canadian brethren! More Isle of Wight-based Bestival main stage action will come from cool chanteuse Gabrielle Aplin, sing-along faves Dodgy, and the Isle of Wight’s own Xockha and Yrslf.
Old blue, Bestival’s beloved Big Top will be playing host to some mighty sounds this summer, too, including the much requested return of Joseph Junior Adenuga AKA Skepta and an absolute must-see live set from drum n bass hero Roni Size & Reprazent. We’ll also have recently expanded noiseniks Drenge, our favourite scratch master DJ Yoda Presents: Breakfast of Champions, with his brand new hip-hop band busting up the Big Top live, and then the man himself will be taking on Bollywood for a typically special DJ set, and we’ll have one of the coolest bands ever to grace a festival, Sunday Best favourites, the utterly incomparable Kitty Daisy & Lewis.
Commenting on their latest Bestival appearance, Kitty Daisy & Lewis uttered as one: “We’re so excited to be coming to Bestival again this year, we always have a great time. Sunday Best know how to throw a festival!”
The Big Top will also welcome a high-voltage rock assault from Dinosaur Pile-Up, plus sets from Kero Kero Bonito, Lloyd Yates, Seafret and – we’re not sure it’s possible to express quite how excited we are about this – The Chuckle Brothers! Yes, it’ll be history in the making with be-mulleted slapstick to me, to you. CAN. NOT. WAIT.
As if all that wasn’t enough to get you all giddy with joy, he was one of the smash hits acts that started our summer in finest style at Common People, so we’re extremely pleased that turntable ninja, Jaguar Skills, will be joining us to destroy the dancefloor at The Port.
Bank holiday weekend in Southampton, all the cool kids are down at the beach right? Wrong. This weekend there’s a new festival on the scene brought to you by the wonderful wizards behind Bestival and Camp Bestival and it’s called Common People. Held on the beautiful Southampton Common smack bang in the middle of town, it’s easy to get to and find places to stay, family friendly and with an eclectic line-up sure to please each and every person in your squad.
Saturday sees the likes of George The Poet energising the main stage whilst the rolling thunder of The Portsmouth Batala band is going strong in the foodie area, and people are soaking up the sunshine and sipping pitchers of cocktails on the grass. Around the corner from the Uncommon stage hides the exciting kids area, featuring a tiny chair-carousel, a massive inflatable slide and a whole host of activities from crafts to stilt walking. A group of dads are also haphazardly trying to one-up each other with their hula-hooping skills.
Over on the main stage The South Sea Alternative Choir are looking decidedly mod but are banging out some classic covers from the likes of The Beatles and Blur. The VIP area is awash with sunbathing bodies on the woven canopy beds and the arena is starting to fill up for the masked Ninja DJ, Jaguar Skills. Jag’s set starts out loud and heavy, mixing in his musical influences and pop culture references, The Prodigy’s ‘Omen’ makes an appearance, as does the festival’s (already much played) namesake tune ‘Common People’ from Pulp. Black Sabbath’s ‘Iron Man’ gets a round of applause from the Dad contingent, and everyone loves a bit of Faithless ‘Insomnia’. It’s a powerful set, if a little weird to witness in the daytime, instead of a dark grimy warehouse.
DJ Yoda is up next, a Bestival stalwart who usually has an incredible AV show, which was advertised but doesn’t seem to have materialised. Nonetheless, Yoda’s mixes are seamless and the guy just looks permanently happy. From Macklemore to The Sugar Hill Gang, Chic to the Sesame Street theme, DJ Yoda just knows how to deliver a great set.
Following Yoda comes De La Soul, who spend the first few minutes of their show joking with the crowd and calling “Can all the photographers, all the journalists down here, just put their cameras down for a second and put one hand up in the air… and get down” as well as teasing the VIP area saying “VIP? We don’t do that bullshit”. Their no-nonsense style brings out the gangsta in the crowd, and there are random gang signs being thrown up all over.
Around 8pm appears to be dinner time in the south, as the queues stretch out in front of each food outlet, but the offerings are better than your average city festival. No dodgy burgers or disappointing noodles to be had here – it’s gourmet grilled cheese for us (brie, pear and walnut) from a little independent trader, washed down with a cocktail from the Day of the Dead Cocktail Bus.
Big Top headliners Waze & Odyssey are going off and the stripy tent is bouncing as the sun goes down. The Main stage welcomes firm festival favourite and long time Rob-da-Bank pal Norman Cook, also known as the epic Fatboy Slim. Bringing out a choir to intro ‘Eat Sleep Rave Repeat’ is a touch of genius and something completely special, even to those who have had the pleasure of seeing a Fatboy Slim show before. With his creepy white mask torn off, and signature Hawaiian shirt out and proud, Norm hypes up the packed arena with a host of hits and mixes at ear-bleeding levels, and everyone loves it. There’s something pretty exciting about seeing parents and teens raving alongside each other, covered in neon paint and totally lost in the music together. Giant inflatable balls are thrown out for ‘Right Here, Right Now’ and the crowd is going absolutely mental. Finishing up with lasers and another choral rendition of ‘Praise You’, it’s clear that Fatboy Slim has made Common People his own, and to top it off a barrage of fireworks breaks out as the sitewide exodus into town begins.
Sunday starts out a little cooler and there are decidedly less people in early, though judging by the state of some of last night’s revellers, that may be down to hangover recovery in nearby hotels and homes. Over on The Uncommon Stage a decent crowd has gathered for young bid-winners The Costellos who thank everyone for coming out to see them, before diving headlong into a fun and energetic set.
People are dancing on benches and drinking cocktails out of hollowed out watermelons over at the Day of The Dead bus, whilst the West End Kids put on a great main stage show. It’s a pretty clever and creative idea for the early slot at a festival actually, something that is lively and entertaining but can be sat and watched, it’s a wonder more festivals haven’t yet tried it. DJ Craig Charles wants everyone to know that his alter egos from Red Dwarf, Coronation Street, Takeshi’s Castle and Robot Wars are ‘not him’, and that he’s just a DJ who loves to play funk and soul. Despite a bit of a mishap repeating ‘Uptown Funk’ at the beginning, it’s a set that dragged the masses from their bums to the front for a good old boogie.
Following on comes the unstoppable and lewd force of The Cuban Brothers. For those who’ve never seen them before, it is a life-lesson in exactly what the watershed exists for. The cheeky chaps bounce around the stage break dancing and throwing shapes like there’s no tomorrow, with a couple of big jumps and lifts from One-Erection and Kengo-San, some head-spinning and of course an almost-nude run around the gangway by Miguel. Archerio in a lycra fringed onesie is an image which could haunt a child, but luckily his moves are memorable and there are more than a few kids worryingly trying to imitate his twerking. Miguel carries a kids-only chant for “Kenny… the bastard” before making up his own little ditty about touching husbands’ wives whilst they go to the bar… #miguelitomumtouch. Yelling “I’ve had five punnets of nose-whisky” to explain why he can’t run for Mayor of Southampton, Miguel drops into ‘Mike for President’ and the crowd is loving it.
Next up, Kitty, Daisy and Lewis are joined onstage by enough equipment to power the London Philharmonic, which they swap and change frequently. They do a good job and play some truly beautiful music, but in terms of atmosphere, it is a bit of a comedown after the wild abandon of The Cubans. Hot band of the moment, neo-punk rockers Slaves strut onstage and launch into an aural assault of drums and riffs that would be right at home with Vyvyan and Rick from The Young Ones. Gurning like bosses they get everyone amped up, but it might be a bit more of a style over substance situation. At least ‘Cheer Up London’ is an anthem for those who’ve travelled down from the city.
Stand out performance of the day goes to BBC Sound of 2015 winners Years and Years. The unassuming electro-popsters take to their first ever festival main stage and completely blow everyone away with their mix of soulful style of house beats and beautiful vocals. ‘Titus’ and ‘Eyes Shut’ have the (extremely young and female) front row screaming at the highest pitch, and when lead singer Olly really gets into it and winds down to the stage – the mood is electric. New single ‘Shine’ is a surefire hit, and their already fan-favourites ‘Real’ and ‘Kings’ are standalone incredible.
Band of Skulls bring a rock and roll edge to the proceedings with ‘Hoochie Coochie’ and tell the crowd “We’re so proud to be here for the first Common People, thanks to Rob for inviting us, we hope this goes on for a very long time”. ‘Sweet Sour’ is raw and brilliant, but ‘The Devil Takes Care of His Own’ is the standout song of their set.
Up next Clean Bandit clearly have a following as a slight delay sees people chanting for them to come on, and ‘Come Over’ gets a warm welcome as we say goodbye to the last snippet of sun-sun-sun-sunshine for today. Jess Glynne collaboration ‘Rather Be’ is the final song of an amazing set, and seems like a perfect sentiment for a Sunday afternoon of revelry, especially considering it’s a bank holiday tomorrow.
As a black curtain is raised over the main stage, it’s time for the final act of the first ever Common People. The ever bonkers Grace Jones is a breath of fabulousness that comes from years of not giving a single eff what anyone thinks of her. Striding on in an ensemble that can only be attributed to the tale of the Emperor’s New Clothes, and high heels, Jones proves that she is the ultimate performer, gadding about the two layer stage and winding with an extremely buff male pole dancer. Hits ‘La Vie En Rose’ and ‘Pull up to the Bumper’ go down well, but it’s her combination of ‘Slave to the Rhythm’ and her mad hula-hooping skills that set the night alight. Grace Jones has been there, done it, got the tshirt and discarded it for a thong. As the fireworks explode over the Common, it’s clear that Rob-da-Bank and crew are onto another winner. With Bestival, Camp Bestival and Bestival Toronto all still to come this year, Southampton has had the first tasty smackerel of this summers’ winning formula, and it is spectacular.