Goldmund (Festival)

There are some things in this world that you wish would never end. Goldmund festival was just such an event. It's really impossible to go about describing the atmosphere of the weekend. 500 people all intent on enjoying original music and having a chilled weekend. The Location was perfect - set in the trees beside a beautiful lake just north of Berlin. Food/organisation/atmosphere wise I've not seen a festival that's come even close to it.

While I was there I got to thinking. If I were going to hold a festival, who would I want playing? If I could take a couple of acts from Goldmund I'd certainly poach Rose Kemp and Golden Disko Ship. Paul The Girl, one of the UK's most innovative unknowns (with one of the best voices), immediately springs to mind. I wonder if Efterklang would pop over for a visit.

You know, if it turned out to be half as enjoyable as Goldmund I'd be the happiest man in the world.

Rock Wechter 2007 in Brief

Rock Wechter 2007 in Brief

All in all this turned out to be a really enjoyable festival. Everyone was friendly and it was well organised and clean. Unfortunately the corporations have taken control - the one place I could get something to drink other than coke/beer (I drink neither) was closed down after Stella claimed they were cutting into their market (mutually exclusive markets people).

The bulk of the music was Brit Rock/Pop - briefly:

Joan as Police Woman

Very nice, some of the subtleties were definitely lost in the festival soundsystem. I always appreciate an artist that gets up and disses the US government.

Lilly Allen

One of the great performances of the festival. She smoked the whole time and apologised for being so drunk (drinking Jagermeister straight from the bottle may well be the reason for that). Her voice actually sounded great live.

Queens of the Stoneage

It wasn't loud enough or something - just seemed to lack any real balls. There was actually a problem the whole festival with the vocals being lost in the mix on the main stage.

Arctic Monkeys

Why are these guys so big right now? There's not much to recommend them. Young boys who have no idea how to perform yet. Watching stuff like this makes me feel cynical.

Pearl Jam

Man it was great to finally see these cats play live. Thankfully they stuck almost entirely to Ten/Vs (i would have been lost otherwise). Vedder rambled on a bit (too much weed for him methinks).

Amy Winehouse

What a voice, eh? It comes across well live too. I found watching her was a tad disturbing - too goddamn skinny.


"I don't give a fuck!" - and you know they mean it. The whole performance was very much in that vein (in a good way). Absolutely mental dancing.

Cold War Kids

Not too bad - a bit serious in their performance. The sound was a little uninspirational but I'll have a listen to the recordings 'cos there may well be something there.

Frank Black

What can I say - I've been listening to more and more of his stuff recently because I think he may be a rock god (an angry one at that) - and his performance backs that view up. I think he did a Fat Boy Slim cover in there (performed while lying on the floor).




Why are these guys the kings of metal again? Oh yeah, it's because they completely kick ass. Such a powerful live performance. They tried to lose me with the ballad based encore but the So What madness soon fixed that.

Tori Amos

Pleasantly surprised by this one - great performance. I haven't listened to her stuff before (though I will now). The girls in the room (almost everyone) were definitely feeling the empowerment (:


I've seen these guys before so I didn't waste to much time on them. The whole thing feels dated and lacking in energy. They were are a certain place at a certain time and that's why they're famous. Let go England - for the love of music.

Sonar Festival - In Brief

Sonar Festival - In Brief

Mica & The Cluster

The band themselves were very South London. Dirty grimy beats. Pretty cool. At the end Mica(?) did the cutest little ukulele ditty. Still stands as one of the highlights for me.

The Invisible

Another UK group. Really really tight performance. I'd like to hear their studio work. Reminded me of both Seal and P.J. Harvey. Possibly a bit safe. Worthy of investigation though.

James Holden

DJ set. Kind of how my mate described it - "the guy's sexually frustrated". Pretty fitting. I thought it was generally a good set, it would crescendo without ever quite getting to the punch-line.

Beastie Boys - Instrumental Set

Goddamn I'm glad I got to see the Beasties doing an old school instrumental set. They only played tracks off the first few albums. Lots of stuff off Check Your Head which suited me just fine - it's my favourite.

Haswell & Hecker

I was trying to get to Sunn O))) but I completely screwed it up. Anyway I'm glad I did. Possibly the pick of the festival for me. Intense beyond belief - my hearing is still suffering. A single laser sat in the middle of the stage pointing back into the crowd (as seen above). The music is constructed by feeding footage of disturbing scenes (the Madrid bombing for example) into computer software. The sounds created were so intense that a section of the roof came down - plaster everywhere. Loved it.

The Executives

I have a DJ set of theirs around here somewhere - I need to dig it out to give it another listen. Very funky, 80's electro beats.


Finland 80's electro power pop revived. These guys were fun. Great image, great tunes. Cheesy keytar goodness. I'm desperate to get more of this.

Richie Hawtin

I have friends who have been banging on at me to see this guy for years. Glad I finally did. Technically he's an absolute genius. The basically just used the turntables as simple sound generators and then created the songs out of layers of effects. Very cool. Still too downbeat for a good dance as far as I'm concerned.

Dizzy Rascal

He's slipped a notch in my books now. When I first heard his stuff I thought it sounded fresh and interesting. Watching him play was a bit disappointing - very much like any other Hip-Hop act. Should I be concerned that he too now performs with a plaster on his head?


French turntablist perfectionists. Hell of a display - very well organised. Amazing to watch 4 guys knocking out a song in perfect sync on 4 different turntables. Lovely.

All in all I had a really good time. There was certainly a huge variation of music to listen to - that is what I love after all.

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