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    Tuesday, June 30, 2009

    Electric Picnic 2009: the Verdict

    A shame to see the company behind Electric Picnic, Pod Concerts is going into liquidation. 'Taxman could pull plug on Electric Picnic promoter' says the Irish Indo but they quote a press release from POD concerts saying the Electric Picnic is now owned by EP Republic Ltd, which is 61pc owned by UK promoter Festival Republic so Pod's financial troubles won't lead to the plug being pulled on the festival. Em, I hope!

    Jim Carroll says there's 14 more acts being announced this Thursday but so far this year's EP lineup is the weakest in years. It's short one or two more major league acts but also short on what used to be its strong suit - hot new, brilliant but not very well known acts. Oxegen has continued the trend of sweeping up some of the best new artists that previously would have been more likely to play EP, last year Vampire Weekend and Yeasayer playing Oxegen were a good example of this, this year Passion Pit spring to mind.

    For major league acts EP 07 had Bjork, Beastie Boys, LCD Soundsytem, 08 had MBV, Sigur Ros and Wilco but 09 has the Flaming Lips alone in that sphere.

    Having said all that, i am still really looking forward to EP - there is still a lot of quality acts due to play over the September 4-6 weekend in Stradbally.

    Really lookin forward to seeing the Flaming Lips live for the first time and Fleet Foxes are one of the best bands in the world so those two should be the highlights.

    I saw Royksopp do a great festival set at Witnness many years ago and their new album is strong - Lykke Li guests on that and she's also playing, her Youth Novels album last year was brilliant.

    Amadou and Mariam
    should make for great pop festival fare, saw them at the Olympia and Amadou is one of the best guitarists ever.

    Plus MGMT should be good.

    Bat for Lashes'
    second album is superb and a step forward from her debut so she could be one of the highlights.

    Jape, Lisa Hannigan and Bell XI are bankers for good gigs.

    Julie Feeney's
    new album Pages is one of the albums of the year and i read good reports of her recent Crawdaddy gig.

    Liking what i've seen of Imelda May, even if she is rockabilly.

    Should be entertaining to see if Fionn Regan still thinks he's been reincarnated as Bob Dylan circa 1966 and Blonde on Blonde.

    Marina & the Diamonds
    - don't have a proper album out yet but the stuff from her EP sounds great - (think Kate Bush meets Lykke Li meets Fiona Apple).

    There's some strong techno/electronic acts on the bill with Orbital, Moderat, The Field and Four Tet playing.

    Other acts i'm lookin forward to catching

    The Walkmen
    - a fine American band that sound a bit like the Strokes and the National having a baby.

    Tunng - an excellent folktronica/electronic folk (?!) act

    Bell Orchestre
    - an instrumental 'post-rock' band who do strings for Arcade Fire, they're a bit like a Canadian Jimmy Cake

    Efterklang - are more 'post-rock' - like Sigur Ros meets Arcade Fire meets something more experimental

    Villagers sound like a promising young Irish band.

    Low Anthem
    - are a good American Alt country act

    Other stuff worth checking out - Roots Manuva, A DJ set from LCD Soundsystem's James Murphy and Pat Mahoney, and on a nostalgia trip, 80s rockers - Echo and the Bunnymen, 80's pop Madness, 60s legend Brian Wilson, and Disco stars Chic.


    Sarah said...

    This years line up is Music for Boys, considering the amount of acts they have playing and the potential size of the audience it's remarkably male skewed.

    Alan Whelan said...

    Is Music for Boys a genre of music then? I thought it was just Mogwai fans. What would count as Music for Girls at Electric Picnic i wonder? Lykke Li, Julie Feeney, Immelda May, Flaming Lips, MGMT are quite girl friendly..hmm..nebulous term though.