It came, It went, It conquered as per. Leeds Festival 2014 was a real pinnacle for this year's UK live music, cramming it's masses into the colossus fields of Bramham Park, this year's Leeds Festival was a true menace of a machine. From strolling the sights and stalls of the relatively tame arena, to hiking through the foothills of Red camp and afar, the beast of Leeds Festival was out in full glamour this year. Not only for the sheer size and scale of the glorified playground, nor for the big bad names it captured upon its stages, but purely the immense and sometimes overwhelming atmosphere of Leeds Festival is what attracts the crowds in their droves - (Each and EVERY year).
This year's line-up, though transparent in parts, boasted an array of big names and must sees. From Gerrard Way's premier solo show, right the way through to Macklemore's fur coat - teenage girl-screaming onstage antics. All considered, It is fair to say Leeds festival caters to the masses, though in doing so, often leaving the fringes of those masses at somewhat of a loose-end. Fear no-more, as this year with 10 arena stages and a dozen campsite venues, attendants waved farewell to mud-mooching moments of waiting around and embarked on the northern event of the year. With Oxfam blazers, slush puppy pleasantries and a number of near 24-hour rave spots all been thrown around, It was hard to find even a moment for the annual carbon monoxide poisoning - plastic bag burning ritual around the camp fire.
Without further ado, we present to you this year's top live sets and why they really made this year what it was.
Continue reading: Leeds Festival 2014 - Live Review
Klaxons perform one of their newest singles 'There Is No Other Time' live at the Shacklewell Arms in London. The track features on their third studio album 'Love Frequency', released on Akashic Rekords in June 2014.
It was another successful year in Brighton for The Great Escape.
Brighton's Great Escape Festival took place over the weekend and, as the UK's largest street festival, gave music fans a very enjoyable weekend as it does every year. Over 400 acts played, giving the punters chance to see plenty of acts; be it established acts such as Example, These New Puritans, Pulled Apart By Horses and Twin Atlantic, or newer artists such as Gnarwolves, Big Ups, Circa Waves, Prides, MØ and Brawlers. This gave the festival goers a chance to see some old favourites, as well as check out the new talent.
Nu-rave heroes Klaxons played a secret show on Thursday at midnight in The Warren, a 400 capacity venue, giving their fans a chance to see them in a smaller setting than usual. Klaxons expressed their love of the festival, saying that they enjoyed coming as fans just to see bands. They're especially keen on the intimacy of the festival: 'They've got people right in front of your face; it's brilliant, the connection. You can look people in the eye and they're not miles away'. The band played a mixture of both old songs and new ones that they haven't had chance to play live yet. Co-vocalist and keyboardist James Righton showed his enthusiasm for the new songs saying he couldn't wait to play 'Show Me A Miracle'.
Continue reading: The Great Escape Festival 2014: Which Bands Shone Brightest?
As married life approaches, Hollywood A-lister Keira Knightley has insisted to US Vogue magazine that she won’t be reverting to the role of stay-at-home mum any time soon. Knightley recently got engaged to British indie band the Klaxons James Righton but quashed any potential rumours that they’d be moving on to having children too soon.
“I don’t want to deny my femininity” Knightley said. “But would I want to be a stay-at-home mother? No. On the other hand, you should be allowed to do that, as should men, without being sneered at,” the 27 year-old added. In the interview, the actress also said that she’s found it difficult in the past discussing feminism, reflecting "I remember doing interviews, and people would ask, as if it was a joke, ‘So you mean you are a feminist?’ As though feminism couldn’t be discussed unless we were making fun of it."
Continuing to cast her mind back to her early days of fame, Knightley admitted it was a struggle to get used to her new found status. “I literally had no life outside of acting,” she said. “I once went to the Glastonbury music festival and was completely surrounded by packs of paparazzi the entire time, so I ended up sitting in a trailer, unable to go out.” She’s currently doing the promotional rounds for her new film Anna Karenina.
The Klaxon's long awaited follow-up Surfing The Void finally sees the light of day following reports in the tabloids and the music press that they were forced to re-record large parts of it by executives at Polydor.. Never has the term 'difficult 2nd album' been deemed more appropriate.
With this in mind it is difficult to know where the blame lies. 'Surfing the Void' is not an easy record to listen to, in fact I would even go as far as to say it's unlistenable. The band themselves declared the original incarnation of the album as being psychedelic and experimental when their record company wanted them to make a 'pop' record. I would certainly not describe it as any of these. However I would be interested in hearing the original, to see if record company interference has had an impact either way. If this is the popper version of the 2 recorded albums, one can only imagine how dense the first one is.
The album comes across like an electronic version of Blur, but not Blur in a good way. More like Blur when they're in danger of disappearing up their own arse. The Klaxons seems to be lacking songs and the tracks themselves are really trying to be too clever for their own good which means that either (1) they're operating on a higher plane or (2) it really is just unlistenable shite. I would opt for the latter. This is by far the worst album I've heard this year.
Continue reading: The Klaxons, Surfing the Void Album Review
Having taken three years in the making, Klaxons second album 'Surfing The Void' finally saw the light of day last week. Having scaled the dizzy heights of success with its predecessor 'Myths Of The Near Future' culminating in 2007's Mercury Music Prize, expectations were high for the follow-up, despite several of the initial recordings being scrapped by the record label or band themselves, depending on whose version of events you wish to believe.
Continue reading: Klaxons, Interview
You may have noticed this ‘new rave’ genre springing from the pages of NME recently. It’s a chance for a non-drug induced wide-eyed generation of ‘Vody’ drinking Skins watchers to call things ‘MDMA-zing’ and get into dance music without being labelled a ‘chav’. Some of the bands are proper top though. Shit Disco, The Sunshine Underground and also Klaxons for example.
This is a bit more of a mediocre affair by the London pioneers of cyber rock (I invented that pigeon hole myself). It doesn’t have the hands in the air quality of Atlantis to Interzone, the disco thump of The Bouncer, or the melody of classic rave re-working It’s not Over Yet. What is perhaps even more distressing, particularly if you happen to be a bearded snobby muso, is that this is a re-release. But every cloud has a silver lining apparently, and the accompanying b-side to this re-release, another rather splendid remix by Soulwax, may just get you high enough to witness said proverb first hand.