Thursday, 11 August 2016

#593: Festival Coverage: Blackthorn 2016 - Day Three

Somewhat groggily despite an earlier night than most it seems, we arrive back on site and head straight to the Paddock Stage where a crowd’s starting to form for the first band of the day. Fresh-faced (though perhaps not in the literal sense given the two days partying they’ve endured) The Claremonts are one of Manchester’s brightest young prospects and their set is one we’ve been waiting for all weekend.

#592: Festival Coverage: Blackthorn 2016: Day Two

Staying at home proves a wise decision. Back on site by midday, fuelled by little more than and a gin and tonic and a ham sandwich, we look and feel a little less delicate than some of last night’s more ardent partiers. It’s obvious too though that many have opted to arrive today, with families, couples and bands turning up in a steady stream.

#591: Festival Coverage: Blackthorn 2016 - Day One

Though it seems more and more festivals are leaving behind the traditional bucolic locales in favour of a more urban environment, Stockport’s Blackthorn Festival is keeping the flag flying for those who like their live music accompanied by a bit of greenery. Spread over three days in the lush South Manchester suburb of Compstall, Blackthorn’s now in its third year, and is fast making a name for itself as a truly independent event that supports not just its local music scene, but also the local community.

#590: FLIIIS - On the Sonnet (single review)

Since relocating to the city in order to study, Manchester two-piece Fliiis have earned their fans through their subtle blend of understated electronica and wistful dream-pop. Much like Delamere, with whom they share a hometown, the duo’s ability to temper atmospheric indie with latent pop sensibility is nothing short of impressive, allowing them to relish in an aesthetic rooted in traditional songwriting, but coming off as utterly contemporary.

#589: Bear's Den - Red Earth, Pouring Rain

When Bear's Den appeared a little over three years ago, it wasn't just me who they made a lasting impression upon. Crafting a richly emotive brand of folk, the trio garnered fans on both sides of the Atlantic and even as far afield as Australia thanks to their traditionally rigorous approach to touring.

#588: Descendents - Hypercaffium Spazzinate

With Blink-182 releasing their comeback album earlier this month, you’d be forgiven for assuming that that was the most important pop-punk record of not just the month, but the entire year. You would, however, be dead wrong. Arriving 12 years on from their last album, Hypercaffium Spazzinate is a comeback album of blistering proportions. Managing to quash any doubts about its relevancy within the opening 75 seconds, it picks up almost exactly where Cool to Be You left off, proving Descendents have still got something left to give.

#587: Festival Coverage: Y-Not 2016

Having started life as a 6th form results party just over a decade ago, Y-Not Festival has always retained an almost-stringent DIY sensibility, something they've endeavoured to uphold despite attracting some of the biggest names in the business in recent years. Wandering around this year's site, it's obvious that certain compromises have had to be made in order to accommodate expanded numbers; a necessary evil as far as the growth of a festival is concerned. For the most part however, the changes to this year's festival are almost universally positive.