Justdip’s in depth and awesome review of the slightly more awesome 2000 Trees Festival 2012. Part 4/6

Part One. An Introduction-What is 2000 Trees and why should I care?

Part Two. Alco pop! – Gunning For Tamar/Freeze The Atlantic

Part Three. Pink Mist – Tall Ships / Three Trapped Tigers / Brontide / Run, Walk!

Part Four. Xtra Mile – Straight Lines / Jim Lockey & The Solemn Sun / Ben Marwood / Future Of The Left.

Part Five. The Stragglers – The Computers/Gallows/Pulled Apart By Horses/ Maybeshewill.

Part Six. The Conclusion to conclude on the aforementioned things that may need a conclusion.

Part Four. Xtra Mile – Straight Lines / Jim Lockey & The Solemn Sun / Ben Marwood / Future Of The Left.

Straight Lines are a rock band from Wales who blend pop punk, with large tasty riffs. Straight Lines had a slot early on Thursday at The Cave but the turnout was strong and everyone was in great spirits that were only heightened by a stunning performance from Straight Lines. Opening with the title track from their second album, Freaks Like Us, the band attacked their set with aggression and a furious upbeat energy that was infectious.

Mixing older songs along with tracks from their fantastic second album ‘Freaks Like Us’ meant it was never long between anthemic choruses or huge breakdowns. Straight Lines even organised a conga line for Set Me On Fire And Feed Me To The Wolves, which, while hindered by the muddy conditions, was greeted with cheers, and a great number of people joined in. Straight Lines then finished their set with Antics and Commitments that turned the conga space into a swirling vortex of jumping and shouting.

Straight Lines are a very solid band, handling the stage with a subdued confidence and playing with a reserved intensity that’s brilliant to watch and sounds even better. They’re heading out on an extensive UK tour later this year and I’d be interested to see what they do at their own show.

Jim Lockey & The Solemn Sun are a folk rock band who have played at every 2000 Trees to date, making them the closest thing to a house band that 2000 Trees offers.

Playing on the Saturday to an overflowing Leaf Lounge Jim Lockey & The Solemn Sun put in a short but punchy set. The atmosphere was crackling with excitement as they launched into their first song and from then on it was glorious sing along after glorious sing along, from the angsty Warriors to the more restrained Waitress.

Jim Lockey & the Solemn Sun played with genuine passion and really threw everything they had against their set and the crowd lapped it up. Acoustic guitar backed by the full force of an electric setup gives Jim Lockey & The Solemn Sun a distinctive sound that dances the fine line between gorgeous and furious without compromising either. It’s a wonderful sound that’s taken up a notch live as the polished recordings give way to a more brutal and raw sound that’s defined but ragged in the most wonderfully deranged way.

Ben Marwood is a singer songwriter from Reading who creates endearing and entertaining acoustic folk songs.

Ben Marwood headlined the Greenhouse stage on the Saturday, clashing with the hotly anticipated Hundred Reasons on the mainstage but the tent was still overflowing with people eager to hear Ben Marwood serenade us with heartfelt and reflective folk music.

Normally, the problem with festivals is that only the well known singles get a reaction, but that was not the case with Ben Marwood’s set. Yes, Singalong and his cover of The Postal Service’s The District Sleeps Alone Tonight got reactions befitting their status but as did the album cuts, JJ Abrams and Toil, the older material, Five Little Questions and Claire, as well as a surprise cover of Death Cab For A Cutie’s Title And Registration.

Two unscripted encores followed the main set and it was plain to see how much this show meant to Ben Marwood as, a few times that evening, it appeared he had tears in his eyes. Beaming away he fed off the buzz created by the surging crowd and put in one hell of a show. Endearing and charming, he played with modesty and soul as he sung about everyday life in an honest and humorous way that clearly resonated with the baying crowd.

The atmosphere during Ben’s set was incredible. I was lucky enough to witness a couple of emotionally charged shows over the weekend including Run Walk!’s last ever show but Ben Marwood’s show eclipsed these. He was a man clearly taken aback by the strong turnout and vocal support for his music. Every song he played was delivered crisply and with heart behind it and in return the crowd responding with deafening cheers and applause that far surpassed any other outpouring that I witnessed over the weekend. I’m not one to rank performances but the atmosphere, the music and the high emotional charge that ran throughout the Greenhouse means that it’s going to be impossible to forget that show for a while. Ben Marwood has retreated back from the spotlight now and has returned to working on his next album, which can’t come out soon enough.

Future Of The Left are an incredible band from Wales who create the most fantastically chaotic and mind bendingly mental music that’s intelligent and funny without being pretentious or overbearing.

Future Of the Left headlined the Saturday night of The Cave and were for many the final band of the weekend, and what a way to end. Opening with Arming Eritrea from stunning second album Travels With Myself And Another Future Of The Left played an unrelenting and vicious set that was simply phenomenal. Screaming vocals, pounding bass and a general sense of chaos paved the way for juddering guitars atop a melodic underbelly. On record Future Of The Left create a sense of fury backed up by a vast wall of noise but live this transforms into something else. The clever musings of Andrew Falkous are spat with venom and the music is played with technical prowess and vicious energy that remains unmatched.

Pausing from the torrent of musical excellence to indulge in some superb crowd interaction Future Of The Left ribbed, mocked yet applauded the muddy, tired and “mentally ill” crowd that had stayed for the duration of the festival and made it to this show. The crowd returned this adulation by throwing back all the energy that was omitted from the four piece on stage.

Playing a set that relied heavily on fantastic latest record The Plot Against Common Sense but still had time to revisit old favourites from the earlier albums as well as a couple of Mclusky covers thrown in for good measure the crowd were with the band for the entirety of the hour long set and the energy remained constant throughout.

Future Of The Left were flawless, the four of them prowled the stage with a real sense of presence and put on an unforgettable show, finishing with a drinking contest with a member of the crowd, dismantling and rebuilding the drum kit in the centre of the stage and looking like they were having the times of their lives. How they managed to stay in time and finish together amidst the self-contained sea of chaos is a mystery, but one that was fucking incredible to experience.

P-P-P-Part 5


~ by justdip on 20/07/2012.

3 Responses to “Justdip’s in depth and awesome review of the slightly more awesome 2000 Trees Festival 2012. Part 4/6”

  1. […] Part Four. Xtra Mile – Straight Lines / Jim Lockey & The Solemn Sun / Ben Marwood / Future Of … […]

  2. […] Part Four. Xtra Mile – Straight Lines / Jim Lockey & The Solemn Sun / Ben Marwood / Future Of … […]

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