Saturday, March 25, 2006

Field music

As we've been dropping in thoughts about summer events recently, we thought we'd go back to our festival preview post from the other week and update it with what's going on. As clearly there are too many events masquerading themselves as festivals these days we're only listing proper multi-day events, not those spread over a number of gigging venues or one day affairs in parks. Leave the latter to local commercial radio.

Wychwood, Cheltenham racecourse
Dates: 2nd-4th June
Tickets: £85, but you can take your car on site. Paperless ticketing, though, the bane of the site entrants' life.
Bands: We kick off with the second appearance of an Oxfam sponsored festival that seems to have one of those come one come all booking policies that includes Billy Bragg, Dreadzone, Seth Lakeman and Martha Wainwright on Friday, the Saw Doctors, Guillemots, The Feeling, Polar Bear, Chris Difford, Mr Scruff, the Handsome Family and Aberfeldy on Saturday, and on Sunday Eliza Carthy, Amadou & Mariam, The Bays, Field Music, Banco de Gaia and the Broken Family Band.

Download Festival, Donington Park
Dates: 9th-11th June
Tickets: £115
Bands: Tool, Metallica and Guns'n'Roses (Chinese Democracy might actually be out this year! Who's left to care?) headline, plus Alice In Chains - yes, they've got a new singer - the Prodigy, Korn, the Deftones, Funeral For A Friend, Cradle Of Filth, Avenged Sevenfold, Bullet For My Valentine, InMe, Soulfly, Stone Sour and Trivium, with plenty more to be confirmed, supposedly including Motley Crue, Bowling For Soup and Fightstar.

Isle Of Wight Festival, Seaclose Park, Newport
Dates: 9th-11th June
Tickets: sold out
Bands: Always strong bills for an underappreciated festival, the Friday features the Prodigy, Placebo, Goldfrapp, the Rakes and Morning Runner, Saturday has the Foo Fighters, Primal Scream, Editors, Dirty Pretty Things, the Kooks and the Proclaimers (!), while Sunday reunites Coldplay and Richard Ashcroft, kind of, ahead of Lou Reed, Maximo Park, Kubb and, um, Procul Harum. If it's any help, we could add that Justin Lee Collins is usually main stage compere and watch hordes of ticketholders head for the eBay sales page.

T In The Park, Balado, near Kinross
Dates: 8th-9th July
Tickets: sold out
Bands: This doesn't sound half completed yet, but we do know Saturday is headlined by the Chili Peppers and also features Franz Ferdinand, Kaiser Chiefs, Placebo, Paul Weller, Goldfrapp, Pharrell, the Feeling, the Charlatans, Damien Marley, the Ordinary Boys, Sigur Ros, the Kooks, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah and the Orb, while Sunday is led by the Who ahead of the Strokes, Arctic Monkeys, Magic Numbers, Hard-Fi, the Proclaimers, Richard Ashcroft, Editors, Primal Scream, the Go! Team and Eels, with rumoured additions including Scissor Sisters, Snow Patrol, Starsailor, KT Tunstall, Maximo Park, Jamie Cullum, Feeder, We Are Scientists and Boy Kill Boy.

Oxegen, Punchestown Racecourse
Dates: 8th-9th July
Tickets: sold out
Bands: See above, pretty much, adding James Brown and the Streets.

Wakestock, Pwllheli Inner Marina and Abersoch Beach, Abersoch, Pwllheli, Gwynedd
Dates: 14th-15th July
Tickets: £45 from 3rd April plus £20 camping per person. You'll have to supply your own wetsuit.
Bands: The largest wakeboarding festival in Europe does have its own cachet, as proved by Delays, The Crimea, Freestylers, The Cuban Brothers, DJ Yoda and The Upper Room, with many more to come.

Guilfest, Stoke Park, Guildford
Dates: 14th-16th July
Tickets: Not even on sale yet, £75 last year
Bands: The first of the set of mid-season festivals that are usually coupled with the epithets 'laid-back' and 'friendly', no bands will be announced until tickets come out in April, but A-Ha have confirmed themselves. Bear in mind last year's main attractions were the Pogues, Paul Weller, Status Quo, Daniel Bedingfield, Lulu, Echo And The Bunnymen, Alabama 3, the Subways, the Others, the Proclaimers, Marillion, Chas & Dave, the Hothouse Flowers and Thunder, and then try and scratch some sort of connection between any of that lot.

Truck, Steventon, Oxfordshire
Dates: 22nd-23rd July
Tickets: sold out, remarkably
Bands: None officially announced yet for the most lo-fi of the main set, which means we're stuck with strong rumours including Young Knives, ¡Forward Russia!, Brakes, The Research, 65daysofstatic, Jetplane Landing and the usual phalanx of Truck Records alumni. More on this nearer the time.

Cambridge Folk Festival, Cherry Hinton Hall grounds
Dates: 27th-30th July
Tickets: on sale from 30th April for £86
Bands: Emmylou Harris, The Chieftains, Richard Thompson, Amadou & Mariam, Cerys Matthews, Eddi Reader, Nickel Creek, Chumbawamba, Cara Dillon, Seth Lakeman, Nizlopi, Rodrigo y Gabriel, The Broken Family get the picture.

WOMAD, Richfield Avenue, Rivermead, Reading
Dates: 28th-30th July
Tickets: £100 for the first 3,000, a tenner more afterwards.
Bands: Mung beans and lentils! Er...Anoushka Shankar, Bellowhead, Femi Kuti, Gotan Project, Los De Abajo, Nanci Griffith, Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings and Ska Cubano are among the first set declared.

Summer Sundae, De Montfort Hall and Gardens, Leicester
Dates: 11th-13th August
Tickets: £65 until Friday, £75 thereafter
Bands: Go back and have a look at the Weekender just gone for the first announcement. Yes, we will be there again.

Green Man, Glanusk Park, Usk Valley, Powys (new venue)
Dates: 18th-20th August
Tickets: £98
Bands: It's Jo And Danny, at a guess. Also, Bert Jansch, John Renbourn, King Creosote, Aiden Smith, James Yorkston, Gruff Rhys, Kieran 'Four Tet' Hebden with Steven Reid, the Television Personalities, Alasdair Roberts, Tunng, Adem, Archie Bronson Outfit, Circulus, Chris T-T, Euros Childs, the Aliens (two former Betas) and The Eighteenth Day of May.

Secret Garden Party, somewhere in Cambridgeshire (it's secret, you see?)
Dates: 18th-20th August
Tickets: announced around Easter, but roughly £65
Bands: Winner of Best Small Festival in the 2005 UK Festival Awards, the most nuts event on the circuit, which last year saw the Super Furries and Hard-Fi among others play in the middle of a landscaped garden on a private estate based on an Alice In Wonderland-style assault on the imagined senses, is pending.

V Festival, Chelmsford and Weston Park, Staffs
Dates: 19th-20th August
Tickets: sold out
Bands: Already famously, Radiohead have put aside their Naomi Klein set texts and are playing under the 'soulless' behemoth booze banner along with Sunday (at Chelmsford) headliner Morrissey, Beck, Keane, Bloc Party, the Magic Numbers, Faithless, Paul Weller, Hard-Fi, Razorlight, Kasabian, Fatboy Slim, Editors, the Ordinary Boys (by which time someone will have written a review of them which doesn't feature the line "but there was no sign of Chantelle", as if they go to Coldplay gigs expecting Gwyneth to appear in a cage), the Go! Team, Groove Armada, the Charlatans, Starsailor, Orson, James Dean Bradfield on his tod, the Sugababes, The Feeling, Daniel Powter, Delays and Rufus Wainwright with more to come.

Reading, Little Johns Farm, Richfield Avenue, and Leeds, Bramham Park
Dates: 25th-27th August
Tickets: from a week on Monday, £125 last year but that will go up
Bands: Taking over by proxy as 2006's big one, the official announcement comes on 3rd April at 7pm, but if the whispers are true expect Kaiser Chiefs, Franz Ferdinand, the Strokes, Arctic Monkeys, Muse, Feeder, Alice Cooper, Placebo, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Raconteurs, Rakes, Maximo Park, Audioslave, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah and Dirty Pretty Things.

Electric Picnic, Stradbally Hall Estate, Stradbally, Co. Laois, Eire
Dates: 1st-3rd September
Tickets: 175 euros, just over £120 at current rates
Bands: Which isn't great value considering, but the bill's neat enough - Basement Jaxx, Massive Attack, New Order, Pet Shop Boys, Groove Armada, Antony and The Johnsons, DJ Shadow, Damien Rice, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, The Frames, Devendra Banhart, Super Furry Animals, Belle & Sebastian, Rufus Wainwright, Bloc Party, Alabama 3, The Rapture, Saul Williams, Tom Vek, Gang of Four, David Kitt, The Boy Least Likely To, Elbow, Graham Coxon, dEUS, the Blue Nile and, even more unlikely, Gary Numan.

Bestival, Robin Hill Countryside Adventure Park, Downend, Nr Arreton, Isle of Wight
Dates: 8th-10th September
Tickets: £95. Funny how an event this late on's willing enough to get a move on, isn't it?
Bands: The Pet Shop Boys provide intriguing Saturday headliners, while also confirmed is the complete stylistic mish-mash of the unfunny Cuban Brothers, Devendra Banhart, The Stranglers, The Fall, King Creosote, Jamie T, Kid Creole and the Coconuts, Amadou & Mariam, Young Knives, Kanda Bongo Man, The Boy Least Likely To, The Fence Collective, The Aliens, Kitty Daisy & Lewis, Tunng, Jegsy Dodd, Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly and DJ sets from DJ Yoda, Annie Mac, Cosmic Fury (Tom Middleton and Lemon Jelly's Fred Deakin), Erol Alkan, Justin Robertson, Mary Anne Hobbs, Touche, Rob Da Bank, Chris Coco and the like. But not The Like.


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