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Posts Tagged ‘Latitude Festival

Enjoy the sounds and the sun this summer with ‘Every Kingdom’ by @benhowardmusic

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Britain is set to bask in temperatures of up to 25c this week; what better reason could there be to purchase a copy of Ben Howard‘s debut album ‘Every Kingdom.’ These are two subject matters that are not as unrelated as you might think : both deliver an element of surprise yet immediate pleasure to the ear, both are more likely to be seen around the southern counties of Devon and Cornwall and finally, both make a much-needed and refreshing change to the norm.


Ben Howard is a 25 year old rootsy/acoustic folk singer-songwriter from Devon, UK. Some of you may have caught Howard’s appearance on Later…with Jools Holland’ at the weekend and what a performance it was. Howard performed ‘The Wolves’ and ‘Old Pine’ from his Gold-certified debut album and simply stunned the audience with his vocal tone and musicianship. Howard’s tone reminds me greatly of my favourite male singer-songwriter, Damien Rice; a compliment of the highest order from my lips. Howard has a loyal and dedicated fanbase in the UK, garnered during his many intimate gigs up and down the country.


Howard is confirmed to play at a number of UK festivals this summer, including T In The Park, V Festival and Latitude, before embarking on a larger scale tour of the UK in November. Most dates are already sold out, but you might just fall lucky on a couple if you’re quick. I’ve included a video below of Howard performing a cover of Lana Del Rey‘s ‘Video Games’, another track which I love at the moment. If it’s possible, Howard makes the melody and lyrics sound even more haunting and beautiful.


Do yourself a favour; treat yourself to this record, put your feet up and enjoy the sounds and the sun.

‘Every Kingdom’ track listing includes: Old Pine / Diamonds / The Wolves / Everything / Only Love / The Fear / Keep Your Head Up / Black Flies / Gracious / Promise.

shelleyhanveywriter 🙂


Written by shelleyhanveywriter

May 21, 2012 at 12:07 pm

UK Festival Awards 2011 @festival_awards ; out with the old and in with the new?

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The 2011 UK Festival Awards were announced last night, in a suitably snazzy ceremony at London’s Roundhouse. There were a few surprises amongst the winners; perhaps a glimpse of the shift that’s set to come this year from folk choosing their festival allegiances more carefully, in light of the current economic climate. For me, size and status are irrelevant; if you have what I want, I’m there.

Following acclaimed performances at Glastonbury, Reading, Bestival and Jersey Live, Ed Sheeran was named ‘Best Breakthrough Artist’ (in association with Brothers Cider), beating off competition from Bruno Mars, Jessie J and The Vaccines.


‘Headline Performance of the Year’ (in association with Jagermeister) was awarded to Paolo Nutini at Latitude Festival, Nutini’s fellow nominees included Metallica, Magnetic Man and Chase & Status. Chase & Status didn’t go home empty- handed however, as they walked away with the award for ‘Anthem of the Summer’ for ‘Blind Faith.’

Rob Da Bank’s ever-popular Bestival was honoured in a new category for 2011: ‘Fan’s Favourite Festival’. This year, the festival welcomed some of the biggest names in music, consequently drawing the biggest crowds, and featured artists such as Bjork, The Cure, PJ Harvey, Brian Wilson and Public Enemy.

The awards for ‘Best Major’ / ‘Medium’ / ‘Small’ Festival, ‘Best Metropolitan’ Festival, ‘Best New’ Festival and ‘Best Family’ Festival were decided upon by a judging panel of journalists and reviewers. The winners included: ‘Best Major Festival’ (in association with The Ticket Factory) went to the godfather of festivals, Glastonbury, whose headline performances from Beyonce, U2 and Coldplay dominated our TV screens over the summer. ‘Best Medium-sized Festival’ was awarded to Secret Garden Party, which this year featured acts including Marcus Foster, Yasmin, Leftfield and Ghostpoet. End of The Road was awarded with ‘Best Small Festival’ (in association with Doodson); the North Dorset event featured live sets from Laura Marling, Joanna Newsom and Mogwai this year. This is definitely one which I would like to experience some time soon.


‘Best Metropolitan Festival’ was awarded to Sheffield’s Tramlines, which beat off competition from The Great Escape, Dot to Dot and Gaymer’s Camden Crawl.

‘Best New Festival’ (in association with Access All Areas) went to Wilderness, a new ‘celebration of the arts and outdoors’ in Oxfordshire, which The Observer described as a ‘bohemian haven’; Oxford and bohemian – sounds right up my street!  ‘Best Family Festival’ (in association with Showsec) was awarded to Beautiful Days.

‘Best Dance Event’ (in association with Peppermint Bars) perhaps predictably, went to Creamfields, with this year’s event featuring fan favourites Chemical Brothers, Katy B and Kissy Sell Out. I’m not sure that any other festival could beat Creamfields in this genre, there certainly does not appear to be any strong contenders to its crown at the moment. Croatia’s Outlook was honoured with ‘Best Overseas Festival’.

Finally, ‘Line-Up of the Year’ in association with XL Video was awarded to Sonisphere, for a staggering bill in 2011, which saw the Big Four – Metallica, Slayer, Anthrax and Megadeth unite for what was widely described as, ‘heavy metal heaven’.

Congratulations to all the 2011 UK Festival Awards winners and let’s hope that the 2012 season exceeds those highs and lessens the lows. /

shelleyhanveywriter 🙂

2011 UK Music Festivals; what constitutes a headline-worthy artist?

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I think we’ve pretty much seen the majority of what the UK Music Festival scene has in store for us this year, but I’ve had cause to wonder; what constitutes a headline-worthy artist? Are record sales the main criterion; perhaps international or tabloid appeal, or could it be something else?

It has always been my opinion that those festivals which consistently perform well with ticket sales, are those which have a clear brand identity and generally, a niche market; Leeds and Reading Festivals, Cambridge Folk Festival, Glastonbury and T In The Park being prime examples. I suppose it isn’t  rocket science really – if you cater to a specific section of the gig-going public, provide the artists and bands that  they want to see, at a price they can afford, how can you go wrong? But so many appear to do just that. Looking at some of the festival line-ups for 2011, I’ve felt largely underwhelmed and uninspired, with only a select few pricking my curiosity to find out more. Admittedly, music tastes are subjective and entirely personal to the ticket-holder, but when the ‘big five’ (V Festival, Glastonbury, Leeds Festival, Reading Festival and T In The Park) music festivals in the UK are charging relatively similar weekend prices, how can a couple of them defend their line-ups against their peers?

Of course, a music festival is about much more than just the music; the location has to be just right, as well as: accessibility, on-site facilities, entertainment, catering, toilets, general crowd atmosphere and the list goes on. Can a perfect ten in all of these criteria however, really make up for a poor line-up? Is a great festival weekend about who you’re with, not where you are; would you trade six good medium-stage acts for one great main stage act?

The UK Festival Awards 2010 announced the following winners late last year:

Best Small Festival in association with Doodson Entertainment – Kendal Calling

Best Medium Festival in association with Smirnoff Flavours – Green Man Festival

Best Major Festival in association with Tuborg – Bestival (see photo above)

Line-Up of the Year in association with XL Video – Rockness

Bestival is a boutique music festival, which takes place at Robin Hill on the Isle of Wight. The four-day spectacular which promises to inspire ‘peace, love and dancing’, is curated by BBC Radio 1 DJ, Rob Da Bank. This year, the festival takes place on the 8th – 11th September 2011 and is set across 15 stages, offering the likes of The Cure, Pendulum, Primal Scream, Kelis, Robyn, PJ Harvey, Noah and the Whale, The Unthanks and Groove Armada. It would be fair to say that the line-up is a mix of folk fusion and boutique chic and the festival site promises ‘an original boutique camping experience, cocktail bars, fancy dress and a hidden disco.’ I think the fact that the festival has always promoted itself as being particularly family friendly hasn’t hurt; children enjoy music too, it isn’t all about the beer tokens people! To find out more about Bestival, please visit the link below.

Green Man Festival takes place on the 19th-21st August 2011 (the same weekend as V Festival, but tailored to an entirely different audience) in the Brecon Beacons. The festival is aimed specifically at the folk and electronic indie- loving public and again, is very welcoming to families with children of all ages; indeed, under 12s get in free. Highlights on the line-up this year include: Fleet Foxes, The Low Anthem, Bellowhead, Explosions In The Sky, The Burns Unit and Villagers. I think that I would enjoy this particular festival; I love folk and electronic music and I love a beautiful scenic environment in which to camp and lounge. To find out more about Green Man Festival, please visit the link below.

Kendal Calling takes place on the 29th-31st July 2011 in Lowther Deer Park in the Lake District. This is an independent festival, combining contemporary music and art with rural entertainment. I think it would be a fair assumption to say that this festival largely caters to a somewhat younger demographic than the former two; particularly with regards to the line-up, which this year includes: The Cribs, Blondie, Chase and Status, Echo and the Bunnymen, Levellers and Young Knives.  The festival also offers dance, comedy and new music stages. For more information on Kendal Calling…you know what to do.

Out of the ‘big five’ headlining acts this year, my favourite would have to be Glastonbury (22nd-26th June 2011): Coldplay, U2 and Beyonce. The brilliance of these choices lies in the fact that there will probably be something for everyone here. The acts are diverse enough to attract wider audiences, yet remain true to what a great headliner should be – an act that commands your attention, whether that be by dividing the audience right down the middle or uniting everyone with one memorable anthem that will go on to sum up the entire weekend.

Taking in to account the line-up in its entirety however, I would have to opt for Latitude Festival as my favourite(14th-17th July 2011). The mix of folk, electronica, comedy, poetry and the spoken word could have been tailored specifically with me in mind. I would pay to see the majority of the acts on the billing, including: The National, Bombay Bicycle Club, Caribou, The Duke and the King, Foals, Hurts, KT Tunstall and Rumer , as well as the fantastic stand-ups on offer including Alan Carr and Omad Djalili . Plus it also takes place on my birthday weekend!

Whichever UK festival you choose to visit this year, I wish you good weather and great memories 🙂 / / / / / / / / /

2010 in review – thanks to all of my readers

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The stats helper monkeys at mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meterâ„¢ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 5,700 times in 2010. That’s about 14 full 747s.

In 2010, there were 72 new posts, not bad for the first year! There were 128 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 7mb. That’s about 2 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was June 16th with 347 views. The most popular post that day was Festival Fashion 2010 for the girls.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were,,,, and

Some visitors came searching, mostly for festival fashion 2010, empire of the sun, alan pownall, lauren pritchard, and festival fashion.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.


Festival Fashion 2010 for the girls June 2010


Alan Pownall, ‘True Love Stories’ – album review July 2010


Competition in conjunction with Zara Taylor Vintage Inspired Jewellery June 2010
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Sublime, deep southern soul; Lauren Pritchard’s new single ‘Not The Drinking.’ September 2010


Conor J. O’Brien (Villagers) – talks about and performs tracks from debut album ‘Becoming A Jackal.’ July 2010
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Thanks to all of my readers and please keep coming back for more of the same in 2011!

shelleyhanveywriter 🙂

Written by shelleyhanveywriter

January 4, 2011 at 9:21 am

Kassidy at Roadhouse, Manchester 8/10/10 – Win tickets

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Glasgow indie-folk quartet Kassidy head out on their debut headline tour this October, taking in venues as far-reaching as Stornoway and London.

The band’s unique sound is created with just four acoustic guitars and if their recent festival performances at Latitude, Reading and T In The Park are anything to go by, this band are set for big things in the coming months. Their second EP, ‘The Rubbergum EP Volume 2’, is out now and includes the beautiful and haunting new track ‘Take Another Ride.’ Their debut album is set for release next year.

I think that fans of Mumford and Sons, Fleet Foxes and Band of Horses will really like this band’s sound, which is a million miles away from Glasgow and much closer to the dusty and scorched landscape of deepest Arizona; as depicted in the video, but in reality shot in Spain! Critics have bestowed the following comments on Kassidy: 

“They rock, but with acoustic guitars, producing a harmony-filled, rootsy swagger that frames them as the British Kings Of Leon.” – Q

“The authentic sound of the Wild West of Scotland…we’re smitten.” – The Word

“Their latest album is full of sweeping, wall-of-sound guitar music that moves with ease between foot-stomping, festival-friendly fare and tender acoustic harmonies.” – Monocle


I have a pair of tickets to see the band at Roadhouse, Manchester on Friday 8th October, 7pm with support to be announced shortly. Thanks to Kat at Universal Music for these.

To enter the competition, just send me an e-mail at with your name and address details by Friday 24th September 2010. I will pick a winner out of the makeshift hat and get your tickets to you asap. Whilst you’re browsing the virtual world, you might also like to peruse my Facebook page at ‘shelleyhanveywriter’s page.’

Good luck!

Written by shelleyhanveywriter

September 6, 2010 at 1:34 pm

Noah and the Whale, Manchester Cathedral review 3rd July 2010

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I was lucky enough to review Noah and the Whale this week at Manchester Cathedral. Seeing the band alone would have been treat enough for me, but to see them in a venue such as this was something else. Short excerpt below:

My favourite track came next and I don’t think that I was alone in that admission. ‘Love Of An Orchestra’ is one of those rare sounds that just grabs you and pulls you along for the ride; leaving you wondering what happened and where you are, but wanting to do it all over again. I can’t express my love for this track enough to do it justice in its simplicity and buoyancy, I just recommend that you give it a listen for yourselves and grapple for your own adjectives.

It was a brilliant and memorable night and I only hope that I get the chance to see the band again soon.They are performing at Latitude Festival this year, which I unfortunately can’t get to but the line up looks great. Perhaps they will find a spot free in their diaries to come to Cambridge Folk Festival; and if they do, Charlie Fink is more than welcome to assist me in my self teaching of the harmonica. Or I’ll just make him a brew, one of the two.

Full review is here:

Written by shelleyhanveywriter

July 6, 2010 at 2:43 pm

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