Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Lunar Festival Review! (Friday 3rd June)

This year I got up to the site early. Not much was happening, but I was already eating amazing food and meeting lovely people. The first band I saw was a local bunch called Chanteuse, whose mix of gently melodic guitars, pounding drums and slight shoe-gaze vibe made a nice compliment to the summer sun. Victories At Sea were due to play the main stage afterwards but that was filled by Castillions (6/10) who're one of a mini scene of brummie 60's inspired garage rockers. Their set was full of funky, dirty rock n' roll tunes, which I mostly enjoyed, despite not loving their singers voice. Victories At Sea's (7.6) scaled down set in the Bimble Inn was fantastic even without their usual multimedia backdrop and drummer (he fell off a ladder). The inn was packed out full of fans, and with nothing but one keyboard and two guitars made a wall of ethereal noise.
The first real surprise of the day was Joesefin Orhn & The
Liberation (8.4). Josefin, is both sexy and incredibly cool while also being very nonchalant. Her band are fantastic, especially their keyboardist, who seemed to be on loan from Kraftwerk. JO+L are everything I've come to expect from a modern day psychedelic rock band, with droning guitars, repetitive, swirling synths, pounding drums and echoing vocals. They aren't just contemporaries of The Horrors and Tame Impala, but every bit their equals.
Stealing Sheep (8.8) are kind of an acquired taste, but from their matching white outfits and the fact that they clearly loved every second. There is much to like about them. But their music is a bizarre mix of girl group pop and left-field electronica. They're totally unique and couldn't exist in any other decade. By contrast Badly Drawn Boy (4.8) was a bit crap. I can't believe that I'd never heard of Black Mekon (8.4) before now, not only are they a fantastic garage rock band from Birmingham, but they also know how to put on a show. They wear suits and kato masks, have two guitars and no bass while their drummer makes a crashing noise that no other band seems to make. It was fantastic fun and the room was full of people dancing. Mercury Rev (8.8) are also kind of an
acquired taste. Yet I cannot deny that they are an incredible live band. Their live sound is something that does not translate to their records. They sound bigger, louder and far more of a rock band live. Their singer has a mad eyed stare and a commanding presence on stage. He's also really good at playing the hacksaw, which makes a strange but delicate noise. Their music has always been a soundtrack to dreams, but this was a whole other experience. They built up a cresendo, that kept on going to a point where it was totally transcendental and then finished with their biggest hit (Dreams).

After this I went clubbing till 3AM but that's another story.

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