Friday, 9 July 2010

Latitude 2010 - Preview

(Photograph Copywright Andi Sapey used courtesy of Latitude On Line Press)

“It’s more than just a music festival,” is the tag line for Latitude. This is undoubtedly true - Latitude has a fantastic range of cultural entertainment from comedy ( Emo Philips, Ardal Ohanlon, and Rufus Hound to name just three ), literature (Hanif Kureishi, Bret Easton Ellis, Julie Burchill and Garry Mulholland), to theatre, opera, poetry, film and cabaret. Yet even if it didn’t have all of these things, it would still stand up to scrutiny in terms of its musical line up. Not just because of the headliners (this year Florence and The Machine, Belle & Sebastian and Vampire Weekend do the honours) but because of its rich pickings of smaller acts further down the bill - more of those in a moment.

Set in Henham Park, Southwold in Suffolk, Latitude is run by Melvin Benn, who is also responsible for organising Reading and Leeds festivals, together with an input into Big Chill and Glastonbury. Latitude is his venture into the more artistic side of festivals - taking elements of smaller boutique festivals, moulding them with bits of Glastonbury but without the warped late night madness / truly alternative ‘anything can happen’ vibe. It has gained a reputation in some circles as a ‘festival for those who grew up at Reading and Leeds but now prefer reading The Guardian, drinking Cappuccinos and lighting barbecues instead of setting fire to gas canisters and portaloos.’ There’s certainly an element of this to Latitude - it lacks the energy and edginess of an event such as Reading, yet for those who want more than just a bunch of indie and rock bands in a field near an industrial estate, Latitude provides. From its now famous coloured sheep, the beautiful Sunrise stage set in the woods, the lake stage with the lily shaped lanterns that light up at night, to the unusual and unexpected - this year for example will see Tom Jones play a set at midnight in the woods on the opening Thursday night and Kitty, Daisy and Lewis soundtracking The Blues Brothers film; Latitude has a significant amount of care put into the curation of the performances.

But despite Latitude being about more than just music, Breaking More Waves will be mainly, but not exclusively, enjoying the performances of the bands and artists of a musical variety. We’ll be bringing a full review of Latitude 2010 shortly after it finishes, and if our wireless technology stands the test we will also be attempting to live tweet our way around the event. Follow us on Twitter here to catch those.

Earlier we mentioned the many new acts on the bill, and below we present Breaking More Waves Top 5 new acts to see at Latitude 2010.

With an album being recorded with Fraser T, (Tynchy Strider, James Morrison) Clare Maguire is a name that remains unknown to many. We first wrote about her at the start of January 2009 after hearing her collection of demos that displayed an artist with obvious talent - she has a hugely powerful and gutsy voice that stands the test versus pretty much anyone you could care to line her up against. So confident were we that Maguire has the voice to be a huge commercial success that we named her in our Ones to Watch List 2010. Yet up until now there has been nothing from Maguire, her record company keeping her quietly under wraps. Come Latitude 2010 we’ll be better positioned to judge if Maguire has fulfilled the early promise that her demos such as the sultry Strangest Thing suggested. There’s no You Tube footage to view, no music clips that we have permission to put out, but if you’re going to Latitude, head down to the Lake Stage when Clare Maguire plays. It could be something very special.

Morning Parade may not be creating anything particularly new or ground breaking, but what they do they do exceptionally well. Big rock tunes with indie /dance crossover, they seem to have arrived fully formed and ready to step up to the next level. You can grab a free download of their song Marble Attic which we featured a week or so ago here.

Since we first featured The Good Natured aka Sarah McIntosh on Breaking More Waves back in March 2009, she has been featured on the last Kitsune compilation, released Your Body Is A Machine as a single, played a number of gigs and bagged herself slots at various festivals including the Isle of Wight, V and of course Latitude. Slowly growing her profile rather than being exposed to huge hype, she seems to be bringing a darker edge to synth pop. “We are influenced by self love and benevolence, narcissism is overwhelming, vanity is quite exhausting, self indulgent, hedonistic, blame it all on your upbringing,” are not the typical lyrics of your modern day pop star. An intriguing prospect. Here's an acoustic arrangement of the single, the original video and song can be seen here.

Yuck have made fairly regular appearances at Breaking More Waves since the beginning of the year. Like all great noise pop bands, Yuck surge with fuzzy guitars, but under the racket have a neat line in melody. Their Camden Crawl set was one of our highlights of that event, and although their music may be more suited to sweaty dark basements, we eagerly anticipate their arrival on an outdoor stage. Here's the song Georgia by Yuck.

From ex-Pipette to indie credibility, to providing vocals for Mark Ronson, Rose Elinor Dougall has been on some journey since she offered up her first solo offering Another Version of Pop Song back at the end of 2008. With a debut album Without Why due for release at the end of August, Rose Elinor Dougall holds the unlucky status of being one of the miniscule number of artists we have interviewed for the blog, before deciding that interviews didn’t fit with what we were about. What does fit though is Rose’s rather wonderful dreamy melodies.

Latitude 2010 takes place on the 15th-18th July 2010 and is completely sold out.

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