Really enjoyed it this year having been in 2013 and 2014. Its worth a shout-out to the organisation of the festival, in particular the way the stage times are split to allow you to catch as much music as possible.
Thursday: Really enjoyed ASIWYFA, I’d forgotten how good they can be live.
Friday: Based on the guide, I didn’t know what to expect from Mr Mercaille, but didn’t expect THAT! Check him out, although I’d imagine YouTube doesn’t do justice. Vennart’s new material sounded great, although Part Cardiac alone would have made it worthwhile. Zeal and Ardor worked much better live than I’d imagined, but Anathema really let me down. I’ve seen them plenty of times before, but the sound was atrocious (with the bass backing-track far too loud), the vocals were out of tune and they clearly couldn’t hear themselves sing. The setlist was strange too, and the band seemed jaded. For anyone who didn’t know them beforehand, don’t be put off by this show.
Saturday ended up being the best day for me musically. Trigger Thumb are definitely going places - what a way to start the day. Jagged, angular metal riffs, strange time signatures, well composed songs, slap bass. To top it all off perhaps the best stage presence of the weekend. Mouse on the Keys really impressed me too. The virtuoso drumming and textural atmospheres set them apart for me. Toska were fantastic too, although I think most of what they played is from their forthcoming debut, so I’d have preferred a track or two from Ode to the Author.
Overall, 40 top class bands watched for not much more than £2 each. Cheap at double the price…