If there's something to take away from this year's Isle of Wight Festival, it's probably sunburn. Unlike the mud bath of two years ago, 2014 will be remembered for serving up one of the hottest weekends I can remember for a festival, along with some crowd-pleasing performances. While not every act managed to capture their moment in the sun, all the major names delivered in spades.
But it wasn't just the music that made the weekend for many; a real sense of celebration seemed to erupt across the site. Partly fuelled by anticipation over the World Cup and partly because of the good weather, thousands of smiling faces could be seen everywhere. Sunflowers seemed to be an essential festival accessory and many opted for as few clothes as possible with t-shirts looking like they'd gone out of fashion altogether. I've even had to make a note in my diary that it's international flip-flop day on June 20th, just one of the many things I learnt around Seaclose Park this year.
The highlight of Friday afternoon should have really been local boy Tom Odell on the main stage. But his piano led ballads took some time to win the crowd over despite his number 1 album 'Long Way Down'. By the time he'd finished though, the reaction showed that he'd justified his place on the main stage billing.
Continue reading: Isle of Wight Festival 2014 Review
With just hours until thousands of people flock to Portsmouth and Southampton for their annual ferry trip to the Isle of Wight Festival, it's time to look ahead to the first big event in the summer festival calendar.
Twelve years since the festival was resurrected, organiser John Giddings has steered Isle of Wight from strength to strength. With around 60,000 punters travelling to the Island, it's not just Seaclose Park that's transformed for the weekend, there's a real community spirit that's evident as buses wind their way towards the festival site. Past years have seen a surprise appearance from Kanye West for Jay-Z's headline set, rock royalty like Jagger, McCartney and Neil Young take to the main stage, and bands such as the Foo Fighters casually chatting to fans on the car ferry. This year looks like it will live up to the festival's reputation without a repeat of 2012's well-publicised mud bath. Although there's perhaps not many surprises on the line-up, there's still plenty to look forward to.
The top twelve to watch from June 12:
Boy George: If you're arriving early, the former Culture Club front man is headlining the Thursday night festivities. But far from a nostalgia act, George is touring his first album of original material in 18 years. He's embraced DJ culture and is likely to put on an impressive show whether he's behind the turntable or the microphone.
Continue reading: Isle of Wight Festival 2014 Preview
Travis are back. Admittedly, that's not the sort of statement that will get every music fan going. But what has to be remembered is that when the Glasgow band released their second album 'The Man Who' back in 2000, they were the band that everyone was watching.
Fast forward 13 years and three albums in between they have returned with their seventh album, 'Where You Stand'.
Gone are the days where Fran Healy sang about the pitfalls of jailbait teens in 'U16 Girls.' This album reflects a band that has naturally matured due to age and has also grown into their sound. After losing some momentum with an Iraq war protest tinged fourth album '12 Memories', the band followed up with 2007's 'The Boy With No Name' and 2008's 'Ode To J Smith'. The five year break has clearly re-invigorated the band.
Continue reading: Travis - Where You Stand Album Review