Tag Archives: Festival

Slam Dunk

Well, everyone’s been waiting. I say everyone, it’s not exactly a major festival, but ho-hum. It’s out. As you can probably tell, I’m not exactly thrilled by the first announcements of this year’s Slam Dunk Festival. The line-up includes Architects, Cancer Bats, and Forever The Sickest Kids, and, aside from the King Blues, who are just fantastic, and I cannot wait to see again, it’s all sounding like a bit of a headache! Maybe I’m just being negative, and I’ll wait and see, with some updates on the new announcements, but I’m hoping for more ska, as last year’s festival was probably the most fun I’ve ever had at a show, with bands like The Skints, who I’m sure will be making a return this year, Reel Big Fish and Less Than Jake.

Slam Dunk to me, means punk, reggae, and ska, but it all seems to be getting a little bit screamo for my liking. We’ll have to wait and see!

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The King Blues… Thank you!

My weekend was made when I found out that the King Blues have been so kind as to fit us Slam Dunk-goers into their schedule. Well… Slam Dunk South-Goers that is, because they have been announced as special guests at Hatfield this year, whilst the Northerners are still left waiting in anticipation as to the special treat in store for them. The rumours are all saying it will be Zebrahead.. but nobody knows!

Anyway, The King Blues are a fantastic addition to the already great line-up. The band were supposed to be playing last year, but had to pull out, because of the birth of Itch’s first child, so I guess it’s their way of making it up to us!
It’s extra kind of them, as they have a show in Norfolk(!) later that day at 9pm, so it’s going to be a bit of a tight squeeze to get there in time.
All of the stage times haven’t been announced yet, however we do know that the King Blues will be on at 3.20 on the Kerrang Introducing stage, although I’m not sure why, as they are probably the biggest band on the bill!

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Artist Of The Week – Gogol Bordello

Well, this week, we have one of the most exciting, energetic, hilarious, and occasionally terrifying bands of the moment – Gogol Bordello.

These nutcases from New York have risen to fame playing their raucous fusion of Gypsy music, punk, folk, dub and many other styles on a relentless tour schedule across the globe. The band features accordion and violin, which adds an unusual and exciting element to their music.

Gogol Bordello is fronted by Ukranian-born singer, Eugene Hutz, who has a heck of a story to tell! Born near to Kiev, Eugene and his family were forced to flee the country, after hearing of the disaster at Chernobyl. They trekked for about 7 years through Eastern Eurrope, passing through hundreds of refugee camps.

Eventually, in 1991, Eugene found himself in the U.S state of Vermont, through a refugee rehoming program. These traumatic events he experienced as a child, as well as his Ukranian background became a big part of his song content. Gogol’s albums feature topics including immigration, and life as a gypsy.

The band will be playing at Reading and Leeds festivals this week, if you are heading there, I highly recommend you give them a listen!

For those of you who are willing to experience some very unique and unusual music, I would suggest watching this performance of ‘Pala Tute’ from Jools Holland’s ‘…Later Live’ show, from the BBC.

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Slam Dunk Festival 2010 – Part 2

So after finally escaping the mess, we managed to get over to the Jagermeister Stage to see Against Me! They are definitely one of my new favourite bands – I know that there’s been the inevitable criticism in releasing an album that has catchy songs on it – but I still believe that their songs have a strong meaning, and they are far from selling out.

The set consisted of a lot of new tracks, including White Crosses and I Was A Teenage Anarchist, all performed with heaps of energy. What I love about Against Me! is the fact that they always look so happy to be playing. Tom Gabel spent the entire set smiling from ear to ear, and it just adds to the experience.

They also played some older tracks, including New Wave, Thrash Unreal and Up The Cuts – some of my favourites!! I don’t really have anything bad to say about them to be honest!

Finally, we saw Alkaline Trio. I hadn’t heard that much of their music beforehand, but it was the only choice we had, as the indoor stages were still locked, 2 hours later! As it turns out, they were great. They played through a series of newer hits, such as Dine, Dine, My Darling, This Addiction and Stupid Kid  aswell as some older tracks including ’97.’

Overall, I guess I can say that this was a great introduction to festivals.  Being my first, it was nice to get a taster of just what it is that lures thousands to festivals every summer. Apart from the obvious crowd control issues, I’d say that it was great value for money, with tickets only around £25 pp.

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