Amelia’s Magazine | An Interview with Dougald Hine of Uncivilisation: The Dark Mountain Festival

A couple of weeks ago, medications I was sifting through work emails and idly wondering how my forthcoming weekend was going to shape up; it seemed to be taking on the familiar pleasures of the default setting – drinks, pilule lazing around Shoreditch Park, case catching a gig or two, having a coffee at Columbia Road flower market; the same old same old essentially, and then an email dropped into my inbox that quickly made me revise my plans. It was from Ben, an old friend of Amelia’s Magazine from French-Music Org, and Liz from Brittany Tourism who were both involved in the French music festival des Vieilles Charrues in Brittany, and wanted to know if Amelia’s Magazine was interested in coming along to check it out. Being a champion of all kinds of festivals, both in England and abroad, but at the same time staying true to the ethics of not flying wherever possible, I was pleased to see that the festival encourages all non-flight forms of travel, and had a good deal with Brittany Ferries worked into one of the ticket packages that also includes transfers to and from the festival. I had a quick look at the line-up, which included performances from Phoenix, Midlake, The Raveonettes, Fanfarlo, Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip and Julian Casablancas. Then I checked my ipod and saw that apart from a little Francoise Hardy and Charlotte Gainsbourg, it was woefully lacking in French music and decided that this Gallic version of Glastonbury could be my guide to France’s vibrant music scene, especially seeing that Chapelier Fou, Revolver, Indochine, Fefe and the brilliantly named Sexy Sushi were all headlining. So that was that. All I needed to do was grab my trusty pillow and I was off to France! A few hours later, after a bumpy ferry ride that unfortunately took place on the windiest day of the year, I found myself in the picturesque town of Carhaix, home of the festival, and about 45 minutes inland from the coast.

Sune and Sharin of The Raveonettes give us a shock and awe performance.

Watching The Raveonettes with my friends – wet and bedraggled but happy.

It was straight to the festival and to the front of the crowd to watch The Raveonettes do a typically kinetic set of howling, fuzzy guitar riffs, liberally sprinkled with lots and lots of noise. Just how the audience like it. The Danish duo, made up of Sune Rose Wagner and Sharin Foo are a dark force to reckon with and played an incredibly tight set, featuring songs from their fourth album, In And Out Of Control. I hadn’t see them play before and I came away thinking that the bands waiting in the wings such as Pains of Being Pure At Heart, Crystal Castles and Vivienne Girls still have a long way to go before they steal the crowns off of these two. Later I managed to get in some talk time with Sune who refused the offer of dinner with his bandmates in favour of shooting the breeze over mugs of vodka cranberries for a whole hour. (Interview to come in the next few weeks)

The next day, when I was a little less exhausted from twelve straight hours of travelling, and no sleep, I was able to properly explore the festival and see it through renewed eyes. Truth be told, it was refreshing to find myself at an overseas festival. The crowd were relaxed, extremely friendly (stand next to any random group of strangers and within a few minutes you will be conversing away happily in a garbled mix of Franglais) and the FOOD (and drink)! It doesn’t matter how many boutique festivals are springing up over England, festival des Vieilles Charrues trumps us with champagne bars all over the site (to be sipped insouciantly while you watch French rock gods Indochine) and food tents which can provide you cheese plates and fruits de la mer to go with your choice of wine. It being slightly earlier in the day, I was trying out the regional cider which was so tasty it practically made me weep, and made my way over to watch the Fanfarlo set. Unexpectedly, this was probably my favourite performance of the festival. Having toured constantly for the past year (watch the mini documentary on their website which painfully documents their incessant and exhaustion-inducing schedule), the performances of the songs from their 2009 release Reservoir have taken on a whole new level. Each band member seamlessly flitted between a myriad of different musical instruments; no-one ever held onto a guitar, trumpet, violin, mandolin or musical saw for more than a few minutes before doing some musical-chairs. I’m not sure how well France was aware of Fanfarlo, but the full audience loved every song they played, and noisily demanded an encore – which unfortunately they didn’t get, but then, the band do only have about twelve songs in their back catalogue.

Fanfarlo talk about life on the road and divulge the little known fact of lead singer Simon’s childhood love of ham radios.

Traditional Breton music. Everyone knew the dance moves but me.

Night time gave me a chance to flit between the bands playing. I watched Midlake, the indie Texans who are fast gaining popularity over on this side of the pond, serenade the audience as the sun set, their hazy Americana sound drifting over the breeze and through the fields. Then it was a hop, skip and a jump to watch Sexy Sushi, the raw Parisian rap of Fefe and – I didn’t see this coming – some traditional Breton music involving some old men, a couple of accordions and a lively crowd who were all versed in the dance moves that accompany the traditional folk style. Then the midnight hour was upon us and the audience was heading in droves to watch Phoenix, who are clearly the prodigal sons of France. I’ve heard before that some of the French don’t appreciate the fact that Phoenix record all of their tracks in English, as opposed to their mother tongue, but there was no such bad feeling in the crowd that stood around me that night, sending waves of love and adulation towards the stage which prompted lead singer Thomas Mars to briefly lie on the stage in slightly dazed wonder at this epic night.

It was frustrating to have to leave on Sunday, as I missed performances by Pony Pony Run Run, Julian Casablancas and Etienne De Crecy, but work commitments dictated an early departure. Nonetheless, I had such a great time that I am already planning next years Festival des Vieilles Charrues (which will be the 20th anniversary of the festival). Brittany was the perfect setting for such a chilled festival, and a welcome addition to the festival calendar.

Way back in 2007, click Amelia’s Magazine was one of the first to recognise the raw talent of a young Johnny Flynn, for sale who won us over with the delicately nuanced themes in his poetic and lyrical songwriting. (The fact that he could wield a Gibson guitar like nobodies business also helped make him alright in our books). Fast forward to today and it’s safe to say that the kid done good. Supporting Mumford & Sons in their upcoming October tour, performing at summer festivals all over the country (including this weekends Cambridge Folk Festival) and collaborating with Laura Marling and Anna Calvi, Johnny has more than established himself in the British folk canon. But Johnny is no one trick pony; his new album Been Listening shows a strong appreciation of musical diversity, and gives respectful nods to early 20th Century blues, African music, and even takes inspiration from Herman Hesse’s Siddhartha. His creative streak runs deep, and the animated video for his new single, Barnacled Warship (released August 16th) is a dark dystopia directed by Christian DeVita, lead storyboard artist on Wes Anderson’s ‘Fantastic Mr Fox’ as well as Tim Burton’s forthcoming ‘Frankenweenie’.

So, as you can imagine, we felt that a catch-up with Johnny was long overdue, and so when we were approached by his team to do a video interview, it was only a matter of fighting over which contributor was the biggest fan (the honour went to the lovely Chloe) and then we were ready to go!

Watch the feature for Barnacled Warship here:
YouTube Preview Image

Go to Johnny’s MySpace and website for lots more, including his newly released tour dates.

Dougald Hine by Asli Ozpehlivan.

In May, search Dougald Hine, visit this co-founder of new literary movement The Dark Mountain Project organised Uncivilisation in Llangollen, Denbighshire. The three day festival of music, writing, thinking and doing was an astounding success, challenging the preconceived notions that our current way of living can be made ‘sustainable’. I caught up with him for a post-festival chat…

How are you feeling now the festival is over?
I’m exhausted and still piecing together what exactly happened, but it feels like it was something big and worthwhile.

Were you pleased with the turnout?
We had 400 people over the weekend, which was as many as the site could handle – and a real mixture of those who already felt deeply connected to Dark Mountain, those who were sceptical but wanting to engage, and those who were just curious to find out more.
Dark Mountain by Emma Raby
Dark Mountain by Emma Raby.

What were you wanting the audience to gain from the experience?
We wanted people to come away with a sense of the conversations going on around Dark Mountain and the spirit of the project.
Explain the dark mountain project in layman’s terms:
Dark Mountain invites people to think about what we do, if it turns out that our way of living can’t be made “sustainable”. It’s also about questioning the stories we tell ourselves about our place in the world, about progress and our ability to control nature. What if the mess that we’re in – ecologically, economically, socially – is rooted in those stories?

How easy was it to handle being a speaker and the organiser?
It wasn’t easy – I was living on four hours sleep a night, at the limit physically and emotionally, after the most intense few months of my life. Looking back, we really needed a larger team around the festival, but that’s hard when you’re doing something for the first time. We’ve had a lot of people getting in touch since who want to help organise future events.
time-to-look-down (dark-mountain)-by-Mags-James
Time to Look Down by Mags James.

How did you get the guest speakers involved?
For me, a great event should be a mixture of people you’ve wanted to see speak or perform for years and people you’ve never heard of, but who turn out to be amazing. It’s hard to choose highlights, but Jay Griffiths and Alastair McIntosh were particularly important voices for me – as were Vinay Gupta and Luke Concannon. There were things which, in hindsight, we might have done better. The main stage was too male-dominated – and we needed more convivial spaces for conversation and participation. But I was pleased with the contrasts between the speakers and the interweaving of ideas and performance. I just wish we could have spread it out over three weeks, rather than having to cram it all into three days.

Were you aiming for a specific ‘sound’ for the festival?
One of the surprises after the manifesto came out was how strong a response we got from musicians and songwriters. Chris T-T and Marmaduke Dando both have songs inspired by Dark Mountain on their new albums, while Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly. has been involved from very early on. So the festival sound was shaped by the places where the project has struck a chord. There’s a lot of common ground with some of the powerful folk stuff going on with people like Jon Boden and Chris Wood, who was our ideal choice to close the whole weekend. But there was a real diversity of other sounds, whether it was delicate jazz ballads from Billy Bottle or hilarious death blues from Bleak.

Dark Ruins by Lisa Stannard.

There seemed to be a lot of misunderstanding in the media about the purpose of the festival. Why do you think it was so hard for some people to understand?
Well, firstly, because Dark Mountain is work in progress – it’s a conversation, an exploration, not a single line of argument or a political platform. Most campaigns and movements deliberately try to distill what they’re doing to simple soundbites. That’s not a priority for us, because we’re trying to hold open a space for difficult conversations, for figuring things out together, rather than claiming to have a set of answers. Secondly, the stuff we’re talking about freaks people out. If you try to talk about the possibility that we might not go on getting richer, living longer, having hot and cold running electricity 24-hours-a-day, people think you’re predicting – or even hoping for – some kind of Mad Max scenario.
Are there plans for another festival?
Paul and I are still recovering! But we’ve already been contacted by someone who’s planning a four-day Dark Mountain gathering in Scotland this autumn, which is great.

There is no Plan B by Lisa Stannard.

You can read our original listing for the Dark Mountain Festival here.

Categories ,Alastair McIntosh, ,Asli Ozpehlivan, ,Billy Bottle, ,Bleak, ,Chris T-T, ,Chris Wood, ,Dark Mountain Project, ,Dougald Hine, ,Emma Raby, ,festival, ,Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly., ,Jay Griffiths, ,Jon Boden, ,Lisa Stannard, ,Luke Concannon, ,Mad Max, ,Mags James, ,Marmaduke Dando, ,Uncivilisation, ,Vinay Gupta

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Amelia’s Magazine | Secret Garden Party 2010: Sunday Review

SGP 2010-puppetry
SGP 10-gold people by Amelia Gregory
Photography by Amelia Gregory.

Saturday arrived with none of the threatened rain we were worried about. Indeed, sale the ground was so dry and cracked en route to our far flung campsite that it had opened into deep fissures.

SGP 10 orange wings by Amelia Gregory
SGP 10-indian headdress by Amelia Gregory

The ad hoc nature of Secret Garden Party has it’s down points – lack of coherent line up information being one and don’t even get me started on the toilet washing facilities and *serious* lack of bins, recycling and water points. But one blessed relief after the meaty corporate queues of Latitude was the huge diversity and quality of food on offer. Around almost every corner some little caravan had set up shop to flog tea and toasties, coffee and candy, tapas or freshly made pizzas. Our breakfast consisted of a freshly toasted marmite and cheese crumpet served by a trio of “strumpets” – such a simple idea but wonderfully well executed.

SGP 2010-pizza by Amelia Gregory
SGP 10-pizzas by Amelia Gregory
PIzza prepared by my friend Lisa of Happy Kitchen.

The sunshine persuaded huge amounts of people into the lake for a swim amongst the copious pond weed which they lobbed joyously at the people crossing the pontoon bridge.

SGP 10-swim by Amelia Gregory
Sarah Blasko by Alexis West.

Down at the main stage Sarah Blasko seemed curiously annoyed by her lack of audience – perhaps someone should have warned her of the laid back nature of Secret Garden Party goers, particularly after a long hard night of partying. Further research reveals that Sarah is huge in Australia so she is probably isn’t used to such a muted reception and might explain her slightly brittle performance. Worth checking out though.

SGP 2010-I Blame Coco by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-I Blame Coco by Amelia Gregory
Fritha Strickland - I blame coco
I Blame Coco by Fritha Strickland.

Shortly afterwards the youngsters were out in force for I Blame Coco. As someone behind me muttered, she “looks just like a female Sting” – funny that. I was strangely unmoved by the overproduced artistry of Coco and her studiously mannered 80s dance style. Still, the kids seemed to love her, so maybe I’m missing something.

SGP 2010-the whip by Amelia Gregory
The Whip by Dee Andrews.

The excitable electronica of Manchester based outfit The Whip was far better fun and the female drummer drove the now fully fancy-dressed crowd wild. “Look after each other tonight,” they laughed with the audience.

SGP 10-silver head by Amelia Gregory
SGP 10-forum by Amelia Gregory

It’s good to see the lecture programme at Secret Garden Party growing in scope and popularity every year. This time we could pick from paranoid film screenings at the Conspiracy Camp or the more intrepid offerings of Explorer Camp. Over at the Forum area Ben Goldacre drew an enormous crowd for his talk on the spurious claims of the pharmaceutical industry and the dangers of Gillian McKeith.

SGP 10-glove head by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-alice by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-group by Amelia Gregory

A quiet bit of wandering brought us to the last undiscovered gems – a few children dozing to some dire but strangely enjoyable puppetry in the Cabaret Tent, and a meeting with The Earl in the S&M Tent, where a sweet looking girl in a floral head garland was being shown how to spank her best friend. I got more excited looking at pictures of The Earl’s cockerpoo puppy on his mobile.

SGP 10-waterslide by Amelia Gregory
SGP 10-waterslide by Amelia Gregory
Blimp on fire SGP Tim Adey
Blimp on fire by Tim Adey.

The creators of Secret Garden Party are massive fans of the Burning Man festival and they try very hard to recreate the same feeling here in the UK. Never is their inspiration more obvious than during the annual destruction of the party island in the middle of the lake. As night fell it was time to let off hundreds of Chinese lanterns and the blimp was set on fire. We accidentally found ourselves with a fabulous vantage point of the fireworks in a backstage area complete with hot tub.

SGP 2010-Golden Filter by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-Golden Filter by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-Golden Filter by Amelia Gregory
Golden filter by Jenny Costello
The Golden Filter by Jenny Costello.

Back over at Where the Wild Things Are Aussie-American combo The Golden Filter were doing wonderful things… and having been underwhelmed by their new album Voluspa I wasn’t quite prepared for the excitement of their live show. Charismatic singer Penelope Trappes channels an effective hybrid of floaty Florence and Alison Goldfrapp electro beats – all bathed in an eerie orange glow that made this performance a definite highlight of the entire weekend. One twitterer even proclaimed it “the best experience of Secret Garden Party.”

SGP 2010-reverend by Amelia Gregory
reverend and the makers - jenny robins
Reverend and the Makers by Jenny Robins.

It was indeed a hard act for Reverend and the Makers to follow… but that was okay because the entire audience was now drunk on Saturday night fun times. “Who’s off their heads?” Jon McClure wanted to know whilst he and his hype man jumped up and down at the lip of the stage and a girl at the back miraculously *played* the keyboard with no hands and *sang* along, though no noise came out of her mike. I told you this pretty young thing was a bit of a trend.

SGP 2010-circusnight Amelia Gregory
SGP 10-rottweiler by Amelia Gregory
Man with a Rottweiler in a skirt.

Heading home after a long day we passed the sounds of Brassroots entertaining a packed tent with a full brass band rendition of the Eurythmics classic Sweet Dreams. It was a beautiful way to end the night.

SGP 2010-Collosillyum
Hay bales for seating in the Collosillyum area. Photography by Amelia Gregory.

If Latitude is a well planned amble between the South Bank, order ICA, Royal Opera House and Somerset House with added sheep, then Secret Garden Party is the biggest most eccentric three day party in the grounds of a country mansion you could never dream of. Two more diverse festivals you could not imagine.

SGP 2010-Blimp
The Party Blimp – accessible only by boat.

Music is just one of the elements that make up the Secret Garden Party experience, surely the only festival where the main acts are liable to be upstaged by a death-defying wheelchair race or a mud wrestling fight. Because the stages are not the central focus there is always space to sit down or to dance, and the natural layout of the main stage in particular means that there’s always space to see the bands properly – which makes for a far more comfortable viewing experience than at most festivals. Despite a distinct lack of well known bands the quality of music on the line up is never low, and as usual I discovered lots of great new music.

SGP 2010-couple by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-frog by Amelia Gregory

My favourite Secret Garden Party stage is built into the side of a huge tree. This year there were giant eyeballs sewn into the back and the front was made up to look like the prow of a ship, complete with a naked female figurehead. Shortly before the prow had been swung into destruction by inebriated climbing mammals Animal Kingdom took to the good ship Where the Wild Things Are with a beatific set of melodic songs that have gleaned comparisons to Radiohead, Sigur Ros and Coldplay.

SGP 2010-Animal Kingdom by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-girls bust by Amelia Gregory
Animal Kingdom by Holly Exley
Animal Kingdom by Holly Exley.

Over in the geodesic rave dome – AKA the Remix Bubble – the Lake District’s finest Burn the Negative were proving to a small but highly motivated crowd (including security on balloons) that danceable indie electro doesn’t just come out of the big cities.

Burn the Negative by Alexis West.

Secret Garden Party has expanded massively since I first came in 2004, and the more idiosyncratic attractions are now linked to the main arena by a floating bridge that caused much swaying hilarity on every crossing. As a mid afternoon treat I decided to get my toes nibbled by some miniature carp from Turkey.

SGP 2010-Fish Therapy
Yes that’s me. White legs! Photography by Tim Adey.

The Doctor Fish has been used for centuries to cure skin ailments, and they were particularly excited by my friend Jemima’s Psoriasis. It was a very soothing experience, and my skin felt notably softer afterwards. This is the first time this particular species of fish have been imported into the UK and entrepreneur Keon Petre hopes to open a range of fish nibbling franchises.

SGP 2010-Emma Ware by Amelia Gregory
Emma Ware.

A huge pink tent housed stalls from a carefully picked range of artists and designers including Spitalfields based illustrator Dan Hillier and jeweller Emma Ware, who makes gorgeous contemporary pieces from recycled inner tubes. Expect to hear more about her designs on this blog soon.

Abi Daker - Fionn Regan
Fionn Regan by Abigail Daker.

Fionn Regan was the perfect treat for a sunny day, following in the traditional mould of talented Irish folk singers with added 80s McEnroe hair band action. Never a bad thing in my book.

SGP 10-baby by Amelia Gregory
Steve Mason by Katherine Tromans
Steve Mason by Katherine Tromans.

I knew there was a reason I felt immediately warm towards main stage act Steve Mason despite having no clue who he was – turns out he was one half of the excellent Beta Band. And anyone who twitters about Ian Tomlinson is even better in my books. Musicians with a conscience – we need more of them.

Marina and the Diamonds by Emma Block.

I’ve been a big fan of hot tip Marina and the Diamonds for some time now, but we missed most of her set whilst enjoying the most wonderful three course dinner at the Soulfire restaurant, housed in three yurts (look out for my full review, coming soon). Instead we caught the last few songs, which still gave me ample time to admire her vermillion lips and whippet thin waist: I can now confirm that she is every bit as sexy in the flesh as she comes across on record.

SGP 2010-Marina and the Diamonds by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-Marina and the Diamonds by Amelia Gregory

Afterwards we were treated to some nefarious circus fun from Down Under – including pubic angle-grinding, sword swallowing and weights hooked into eyelids. Tasteful.

SGP 2010-angle grinder circus by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-circus by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-circus eyeball lift by Amelia Gregory

I featured the Infadels way back in issue 04 of Amelia’s Magazine in 2005, and they’ve been steadily plugging away ever since. I haven’t heard any recent albums but they seemed quite happy to play lots of the old tunes, which perfectly suited the late night party crowd.

infadels by harriet gray
Infadels by Harriet Gray.

Most amusingly they seem to have acquired a female joint lead vocalist on one of their most famous tunes. Maybe all ageing bands will one day invite drunk negligee-wearing teenagers on board to spice things up. Oh hang on, it’s already become a trend… (see Saturday’s blog…)

SGP 2010-Infadels by Amelia Gregory

The Delays by Abby Wright.

Last up on Where the Wild Things Are at gone 1am the glitter-covered Delays played a fantastically energetic set to a shockingly small crowd. “Let’s see some shoulder action,” they pleaded. “It’s not a festival without it.” Several people obligingly mounted their friends with rapidity. I hope one day this vastly underrated band finds the success they deserve. Catch our recent interview with them here.

SGP 10-aliens by Amelia Gregory
SGP 10-robot mime by Amelia Gregory

gabby young by moon
Gabby Young by Moon.

Our Sunday got off to a sleepy start, viagra 60mg as it did for most Secret Gardeners. Bypassing the cleverly marketed Hendrick’s gin carriage in favour of a cup of tea, I wended my way to the press tent to once more charge my damn crappy iphone, and caught the soulful electro sounds of Belleruche, rather erroneously described in the £5 brochure as “blissed out hip hop beats”.

SGP 2010-hendricksgin
This lovely artwork was displayed in the Hendrick’s train carriage. Apparently the artist is a woman based in the Truman Brewery but they couldn’t tell me who it was. Does anyone know? Photography by Amelia Gregory.

SGP 10-main arena by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-belleruche by Amelia Gregory
Belleruche by Stacie Swift
Belleruche by Stacie Swift.

It wasn’t long before I was distracted by the nefarious lure of mud wrestling over in the aptly named Collisillyeum. To start off proceedings a small semi naked boy was encouraged to wrestle a large slippery man in nowt but pants – thankfully it transpired that this was his dad otherwise the picture below might look extremely dodgy.

SGP 2010-collisillyeum by Amelia Gregory
SGP 10-mud fight by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-mudfight by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-mudfight by Amelia Gregory

After the couple had managed to drag mum into the mud it was time to pit some blonde ladies against a couple of brunettes before sending a load of curiously willing men into the arena, where many a bollock and boob was soon on display. Naturally my proximity to the action ensured both myself and my camera got well spattered in mud.

SGP 10-David Rodigan by Amelia Gregory
SGP 10-David Rodigan crowd by Amelia Gregory
SGP 10-David Rodigan crowd by Amelia Gregory
David Rodigan by Louise Sterling.

Back at the main stage DJ David Rodigan was the surprise hit of Sunday afternoon. The 59 year old gave us a guided tour through the history of reggae with all the enthusiasm of an overexcited puppy whilst the crowd jumped around in reciprocal glee.

SGP 2010-savoir adore by Amelia Gregory
Andrea Peterson Savoir Adore
Andrea Peterson Savoir Adore
Savoir Adore by Andrea Peterson.

Savoir Adore hail from Brooklyn, and showed typically American enthusiasm for Secret Garden Party. “We’re so excited – this is the coolest place.” Wearing standard festival glittery eye make up (I blame Bat For Lashes – even the boys are covered in it these days) their gorgeous brand of melodic electronica was met by a laconic audience. “I know how tired you guys are…” opined singer Deidre Muro, “but I invite you to stand up.” She didn’t have much luck, but this shouldn’t be equated with any lack of enthusiasm.

SGP 2010-Horace Andy by Amelia Gregory
Horace Andy by Sine Skau
Horace Andy by Sine Skau.

Over in the main area it was time to subject my poor camera to another onslaught – this time a paint powder fight that bathed the happy dancers in a pastel fluoro glow before submerging them in the mellow beats of reggae supremo Horace Andy.

SGP 10-body paint by Amelia Gregory
SGP 10-clown powder by Amelia Gregory
SGP 10-paint powder by Amelia Gregory
SGP 10-paint powderfloor by Amelia Gregory
SGP 10-paint by Amelia Gregory
tim adey paint powder
Last photograph by Tim Adey.

Thanks to a tip off from my boyfriend I caught the fantastic Gabby Young and Other Animals playing to a small crowd at the Chai Wallah tent. Gabby was dressed in an amazing ruffled paper and lace concoction accessorised with coloured false hair pieces; a dream to photograph and illustrate. Together with banjo and brass she creates wonderful big band indie folk you can dance to. A real discovery.

SGP 2010-Gabby Young by Amelia Gregory
Gabby Young by Michelle Urvall Nyrén
Gabby Young by Michelle Urvall Nyrén.

We stayed for the majority of headliners Mercury Rev, most notable for their well practiced stadium posturing. Ours was a quick midnight drive back to London but I hear at times there were dire queues to get both in and out of Secret Garden Party.

SGP 2010-Mercury Rev by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-Mercury Rev by Amelia Gregory
SGP 2010-Mercury Rev by Amelia Gregory
Mercury Rev by Mags James
Mercury Rev by Mags James. Animal hood by Merrimaking.

All in all this was another vintage year from the one festival that refuses to bow to corporate Festival Republic pressure. Long may it remain thus, for this is one grown up’s party that deserves to continue in perpetuity. I shall leave you with my remaining selection of Sunday’s highlights.

SGP 2010-theatre by Amelia Gregory
Interactive games in the theatre tent.

SGP 10-best costume by Amelia Gregory
Best costume of the entire weekend? Even he had no idea what it was supposed to be.

SGP 10-leigh bowery by Amelia Gregory
Make up inspired by Leigh Bowery.

SGP 2010-limbo by Amelia Gregory
Doing the limbo in a feather boa.

SGP 2010-rollers by Amelia Gregory
A man in bikini, fat suit and rollers. Why of course!

SGP 10-wild thing art by Amelia Gregory
Art in the woods.

SGP lovers Tim Adey
Loved up, photography by Tim Adey.

sgp wheelchair race tim adey
Wheelchair disaster. Photography by Tim Adey.

Categories ,Andrea Peterson, ,Bat for Lashes, ,Belleruche, ,brooklyn, ,Chai Wallah, ,Collisillyeum, ,David Rodigan, ,Gabby Young and Other Animals, ,Hendricks, ,Horace Andy, ,Louise Sterling, ,Mags James, ,Mercury Rev, ,Merrimaking, ,Michelle Urvall Nyrén, ,moon, ,Savoir Adore, ,Secret Garden Party, ,Sine Skau, ,Stacie Swift, ,Tim Adey

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