Thanks to a good friend giving me a Guest Ticket for the whole weekend of Latitude Festival, I had the privilege of seeing one of the best line ups this year (or any year for that matter)! In my 3 part Latitude Front Row Centre Special, I will talk you through my top highlights over the three days of the Festival!
Latitude Festival Henham Park, Southwold, Suffolk on July 19th 2013
On Friday the weather was superb, it was a day for exploring the site but more importantly to start the festival off right! Maybe because it was the first day or maybe because the line up was excellent but it was the best day for me. I watched about 10 hours of constant music and although I'd like to talk about them all I have whittled it down to my fave 3 of the day. The beauty of a festival is the complete chilled out nature, there is room for everyone so therefore no need for me to squeeze though the crowds on my tip toes to try and see whats going on. Here, you pull up a piece of grass and lounge around sipping a cold cider soaking up the atmosphere, whilst seeing your chosen band or artist on huge screens with no pressure to catch the last train home! I was also horrified from festival toilets in the past but at Latitude, I couldn't have asked for more! There was always loo roll, hand sanitisers and no nasty surprises when you open that portaloo door! I was also amazed at the food choice! No nasty burger vans here, it was all gourmet, fresh and locally sourced food. Fancy a hog roast with fries? How about fresh Loch Fyne mussels? Or what about a stone baked pizza hot from the oven or a falafel and haloumi ciabatta? You name it, they've got it here!
Willy Mason - 'Oxygen'
As it was so hot and sunny out, the nature of the music I fancied hearing was of the chilled out softer kind. After seeing Theme Park and James Skelly & The Intenders, I was looking forward to seeing Willy Mason. For each gig, I decided on the 3 songs I'd most like to hear and although he didn't play Restless Fugitive he played great versions of Pick Up Truck, We Can Be Strong and of course Oxygen which was the first song from Willy I had heard. Sadly because there are so many acts to get through, the sets are shorter but Willy still managed to put across his laid back and jolly nice self. I could honestly listen to his relaxed American drawl all day long!
I Am Kloot - 'Hold Back The Night'
The evening was slowly beginning to draw in and what better way to meet it, than by watching I Am Kloot. It was the perfect time of day to hear them and the songs about skies, the days and nights fitted with the serene ambiance nicely. I adore lead singer John Bramwell's warm voice and was happy they played my favourites of These Days Are Mine with a guitar played "Arabian bit" and Northern Skies. All in all they seemed like very nice chaps!
My festival pal managed to convince me to head to the front of the BBC6 tent as a big chunk of the crowd seemed to have dispersed to get a spot for Bloc Party. I'm so glad I did. I got a perfect view of Joey Burns doing their soundcheck! I had a totally unobscured view and a nice barrier to lean on. Having seen Calexico many times before I knew they always put on a great show but being so close was such a new experience. Their energy was infectious, they got the crowd whooping and clapping along Corona and Alone Again Or. The real head turners were Maybe On Monday from recent album Algiers and their grand finale of Guero Canelo. They just kept going and went through each band member to give them a chance in the spotlight, to show off their skills. It was truly fabulous and I came out of there absolutely buzzing all over. If I had to choose, I'd say they were my favourite gig for the whole 3 days!
Come back over the next couple of weeks to read about my round up of choices for Day 2 & 3 or click here! Until then, have a listen to my Latitude Spotify Playlist!
FRONT ROW CENTRE - LATITUDE 2013 SPECIAL - DAY 1
4/ 5Oleh Shell Hunter