Thursday, September 3, 2009

OFFSET Festival Preview

East London's Offset Festival 2008

While I am in sunny England (on holiday), before I put this laptop away completely, I am going to cut out to East London's Hainault Forest Country Park for this year's Offset Festival. Having grown familiar with most of the local New York names, I couldn't resist throwing myself into a completely new event, where almost none of the band names are recognizable. It feels very similar to my first SXSW, scouring the list of performers and knowing absolutely nothing about any of them. For OFFSET, I have previewed the entire line-up, listening to ALL of the bands on MySpace, which took me almost two weeks. It was a blast to do so, and as a result, I will catch some fantastic English and European acts, fresh in their infancy.

2008 Offset Festival

Here's some info about the festival from the official release: East London’s artrock and post punk Offset Festival announce more creative, exciting, and influential artists added to this year’s lineup. Joining the likes of The Horrors, The Slits, and The Futureheads on 5-6th September will be:

Damo Suzuki, Dananananaykroyd, Die! Die! Die!, S.C.U.M, The Chapman Family. Plus: Kasms, Tim Burgess (DJ set), John and Jehn, R O M A N C E, Disconcerts, Cheval Sombre, Math Head, Gyratory System, Wild Palms, Teeth of the Sea and Private Trousers.

Joining the dots between exciting new artists and their iconic influences, the boutique festival hosts over 200 artists on 7 stages. An old-fashioned fun fair, vintage clothing market hosted by the renowned Affordable Vintage Fashion Fair, and performance art, will also feature during the weekend.

Here are my picks (in no particular order):

Magic and Fur will play 2009 Offset Festival
Magic and Fur

Magic & Fur - Transparency has always been a virtue of this blog, so I must say that Magic & Fur are how I heard about this festival. I wrote a review of their single "Christine" and wanted to try and catch a show while I was abroad. This festival was the best possible way, I think.
"Do Not Toll The Bell" by Magic & Fur download mp3 (with permission)

The Rayographs will play 2009 Offset Festival
The Rayographs

The Rayographs - These three girls are the band I think I am most excited to see. They have a great sound, as evidenced by its ability to draw my GF out of the bathroom with her familiar craned posture. "Who's that?" Whenever she says that, you know it's a winner.
"Hidden Doors" by The Rayographs download mp3 (with permission)

Nullifier - I know absolutely nothing about this band. They didn't answer an email I sent them, and they don't have a website or a record. When the band responded to an open invitation to sign, posted on the One Inch Badge Records' website, the recording process began. Here is more from that website:

Nullifier are an incredibly demanding and infectious hyper-pop supergroup from Brighton consisting of Todd Jordan aka T-Jo from My Device and James Morrison aka J-Mo from The Tumbledown Estate. Padding out the rest of this insane 8-piece collective are Tom Denney (Lonely Ghosts / Help She Can't Swim), Tom Windsor (Pope Joan), Luke Hefson (Not Katies), Alex Uren (My Device), Russ Eke (My Device), and Milo Boyd (Cameltoe Comb Over).

Spectrals will play the 2009 Offset Festival

Spectrals - I know nothing at all about Spectrals, other than the music on MySpace has that badass sixties dirt sound that we all love. It's something a lot of people are doing, sure, but this version of it made me perk up an inch higher than the rest.

And then there are the famous bands that I want to see:

Bearsuit, Metronomy and Damo Suzuki. As all of these bands have adequate press, I don't think I need to go on-and-on about any of them. I hate to penalize bands for being successful, but that's the way it goes. I will say that Damo Suzuki is the most likely to end up the subject of a documentary someday, Metronomy were one of the festival favorites last year, and Bearsuit's single "Foxy Boxer" drew more LALA followers than any other song I have ever previewed on the blog. It should be a good weekend with a cool 55 degrees. Last minute flight deals from New York are not bad. You have 48 hours, though. You had better get a move on.

Buy Magic and Fur's Records!!
Join the Too Pure Singles Club!!
Buy Spectrals' Records!!
Buy The Rayographs' Records!!
Buy Nullifier's Records!!
Buy Tickets to the OFFSET FESTIVAL

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