News Column

A DOLLY GOOD TIME: 14 REASONS WHY THIS YEAR'S FESTIVAL SEASON WILL BE...

May 31, 2014



PARTON SHOT

Dolly Parton at Glastonbury will be one of the moments of 2014. A true legend, Dolly's as sharp with a dry-witted quip as she is with a tune, and she has more than a few of the latter.

GENE GENIES

The Gene Clark No Other Band make their only 2014 UK appearance at End of the Road. For those making the 'who-what-where-now-band?' faces at the back, that's the supergroup composed of members of Beach House, Fleet Foxes and Grizzly Bear, playing Byrds founder-member and folk-rock legend Gene Clark's album No Other. Rustic melancholy a-go-go!

CORNISH FESTY

Celebrate both the Cornish people's new national minority status and the reopening of the beautiful Dawlish railway line with a southwest fest! The always-scenic Eden Sessions this year boasts Dizzee Rascal, Ellie Goulding and Elbow, while Port Eliot welcomes Gruff Rhys and Liberty director Shami Chakrabarti. If that's a little too cerebral, Newquay's surf'n'tunes fest Boardmasters has Snoop Dogg and Chase & Status.

GERMAN WHIPPIN'

If Daft Punk's 'Get Lucky' was the never-ending groove that fuelled 2013's small-hours parties in silent disco, campsite and dance tent, this year's inescapable festival theme will be Meridian Dan's grime revival monster 'German Whip' - you may even see men chasing frisbees to it.

THE BIG FOUR-WOAH-OH-OH

Knebworth House celebrates 40 years of hosting live music this year, having been the scene of ground-shaking gigs by Queen, Oasis and er, Robbie Williams - celebrate with Metallica and Iron Maiden's first UK co-headline slot at Sonisphere.

GET PSYCHED

Get back to the strung-out, bearded roots of festivals with the increasing range of psych-rock specials. This year has already seen the first Berlin Psych Fest and will go from trip to trip with the continuing success of Liverpool Psych Fest - featuring excellent Swedish weirdos Goat - France's Levitation and new Portuguese fest Reverence in September, which boasts original stoners Hawkwind.

ATP NOT RIP

Connoisseur promoters ATP refuse to go gentle into that good chalet, moving beyond the Pontin's weekender era with two new ventures. ATP @ OFF is a one-day event preceding Poland's OFF festival, with Dean Wareham, Loop and Earth. Jabberwocky, meanwhile, is a London two-dayer headlined by Neutral Milk Hotel with support from the likes of James Blake and Liars in the unlikely environs of the ExCel Centre.

JACK V DAMON

Two big indie beasts take their solo chances this year. Damon Albarn's got himself used to mega-crowds again with the Blur reunion, but will his more low-key solo debut 'Everyday Robots' square up to headline slots at Latitude and Exit? Or will the crown go to former White Stripe Jack White who, with second solo album 'Lazaretto' is taking on high slots at Glasto and Open'er?

GIVE IT SOME TELLY

Not a new reformation, or a new idea, but if our experience watching Television play their genuinely legendary debut 'Marquee Moon' at ATP last year is anything to go by, their repeat performance at Primavera, out in the summer air, should be swoon-inducing.

WIRED FOR SOUND

London's park-based monster Wireless expands to two sites this year, encompassing Birmingham'sPerry Park with a lineup including Drake, Pharrell and oh yeah, KANYE.

FIELD MUSIC

The more bijou London indie/electronica fest Field Day, meanwhile, expands to two days, headlined by the reformed, reshuffled, recording and don't-give-a-damn Pixies and critical darlings Metronomy.

KEEP ON BELLADRUMMIN'

Though Rockness was forced to cancel due to clashes with the Commonwealth Games, northern Scotland's other rock festival, Belladrum, carries on the Highland spirit with Sir Tom 'Team' Jones and er, Razorlight getting the people all fired up a mere month before the independence referendum.

ROBYN-LED FEST

Latitude in the UK, plus Sonar, Melt!, Oya, Way Out West and Pukkelpop score sets from the reunited super-collaboration of Swedish pop genius, Royksopp and Robyn.

BIG TOP DOGS

The Big Top stage at Bestival has always been home to the big boutique fest's more left-field acts, and this year it joins forces with BBC 6Music for a lineup including resurgent maverick Beck, seasoned party-bringers Basement Jaxx, and true to the spirit of the station's freakier corners, Radiophonic Workshop, Bonobo and Cate Le Bon.?

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Source: Guardian (UK)


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