With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

Music trivia, useless info, extra added random stuff and the odd rant from me

Latitude Festival 2022- Day 3 – Sunday 24th July August 1, 2022


First up on the Obelisk Arena on the final day of Latitude 2022 was Dylan a Suffolk-born and London-based singer-songwriter called Dylan. I was really keen to see her play as a delightful lady serving at the donut stand had highly recommended her earlier in the festival. What a great recommendation too, I wish I knew the donut girl’s name so that I could thank her. Dylan is a little like a British Avril Lavigne for these troubled times, but with less of Avril’s punk aspirations. Dylan writes some fabulous pop-infused rock songs. “You’re Not Harry Styles” and “No Romeo” were particular highlights. She and the band looked like they were having an absolute blast. The brief cover of the Guns ‘n’ Roses classic “Paradise City” was rather good indeed. Apparently, Dylan has been coming to Latitude since she was 9 years old. She is a great performer and she owned her first moment on the Main Stage. A quick trundle over to the BBC Sounds Stage for hard rock power duo, JOHN was next. They got together back in 2013 in London. The music comes from a relatively simple setup with guitar, drums, and vocals in the vein (no pun intended) of Royal Blood. They rocked like metal motherfuckers and they are damned good. Now I need to check out their 2021 album, which reached a heady number 78 in the UK charts.

Tribes took a mid-afternoon slot on the Obelisk Arena Stage. They originally formed back in 2010 and after some success, they parted ways a few years later. But now they’re back and will be releasing a new album soon. They sound like something in between a slacker Weezer and a harder-edged Counting Crows. A very tight band with a great canon of songs. Tribes are a band that it is hard not to like, they are infectious and I have the Tribes virus! Next on the Obelisk Arena Main Stage was the angel-voiced Rumer, one of my wife Catwoman’s favourite singers. Although sadly Catwoman (a.k.a Catherine) managed to miss her. Rumer is a British singer who has a voice that is comparable to Karen Carpenter in her prime. Her ability to interpret the songs of others is a thing of beauty. Her covers of Bacharach David songs and some classy 70s covers have provided some magnificent albums. But she does more than just covers, her own “Aretha” is gorgeous. Rumer was apparently once a backing vocalist for Hall and Oates which prompted a stunning live version of “I Can’t Go For That”. Mark Owen followed Rumer onto the Obelisk Arena Stage and there was no way I was prepared to hang around for him, given that he is perhaps the shittest member of Take That. Obviously, he did a couple of Take That songs which I recognised as I walked away at a pace! Presumably to take away the taste of Mark Owen the Manic Street Preachers played the Obelisk Arena Stage early evening with an unsurprisingly hit-packed set. Opening with “Motorcycle Emptiness” and “Everything Must Go” and including a soulful, searing and emotional “If You Tolerate This Then Your Children Will Be Next”. 21st Century Dublin punks Fontaines D.C. had to pull out of Latitude last year after one of the band caught that bastard Covid. But this year they were back with a seismic set to headline the BBC Sounds Stage. Now on their magnificent third album, ‘Skinty Fia’ Fontaines D.C. are growing into a punky hard rock behemoth. A particular highlight was “Dogrel” but even this was knocked into touch by the closing pair of “Boys In The Better Land” and “I Love You”. I was never going to bother with Snow Patrol, largely because I find them interminably dull, however, that did mean that I missed another Ed Sheeran appearance at Latitude to perform “Bad Habits” with Snow Patrol. It was great to be back at Latitude, my first visit since 2018. Roll on Latitude 2023!

No photos were taken using my cheap Chinese android phone on Sunday, due to low battery and alcohol! The videos were all found on YouTube. If one of them is yours and you would like me to credit you or take it down please let me know. Also a tiny confession, I imbibed a little too much alcohol during a very hot Sunday, so the reviews of Manic Street Preachers and Fontaines D.C. are composites based on speaking to a number of friends who were actually there! Thank you, Johnny, Joe, and Dom!

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Latitude Festival 2022- Day 2 – Saturday 23rd July July 31, 2022


I don’t think that there was a better way to open the Obelisk Arean Stage on Saturday than with York’s finest musical sons, Shed Seven. The band, formed in 1990 and named after a railway shed was the perfect choice for an early afternoon Latitude appearance. They are battle-hardened Brit Pop survivors who know their stuff and are still recording with a new album due out soon. The set was a definite 10/10, which is not bad for a band described on Twitter (by one David Callow) as a “shitty little band”. Segueing “Going For Gold” into “Suspicious Minds” worked very well. Note for Mr. Witter, the Elvis tune was released in 1969. The Sheds saved the sublime and magnificent, York City adopted terrace anthem, “Chasing Rainbows” until the end, closing a brilliant show! Rick Witter also gave his maracas as gifts to a couple of people, including a little kid that he had conversed with during the set. Next, it was back to the BBC Sounds Stage for relatively local lass Bessie Turner. She does soulful, folky pop and does it really well. It was a fresh, fun performance for a sunny afternoon. Apparently, her old teacher was in the crowd, I would have been proud had she been one of my pupils!

Shed Seven
Hamish Hawk

Now it was time for a quick dash to the Alcove stage for Scottish singer Hamish Hawk. The band is also called Hamish Hawk. This was an electrifying performance, a bit like early Ultravox but using more “organic” instruments, lots more emotion, and oodles of fun. There were some great songs, including one about ecclesiastical architecture. The closing track, “Caterpillar” gave the band the opportunity to completely wig out and they did it with aplomb and attitude. Hamish is an animated and passionate performer. His dancing style is totally original and feels like a Thunderbirds puppet after too many energy drinks. This is a great band, check them out now if you haven’t already. next it was back to the BBC Sounds Stage for Curtis Harding an extraordinarily talented soul singer which seems to display every emotion from ecstasy to deep pain. The band is superb and the set has the feel of a full-on Blues Brothers-style soul revue. Curtis is a great performer who works the crowd into a frenzy. He has a rich, soulful voice that comes across as a 21st Century Curtis Mayfield or Sly Stone. He and his band know how to party too!

Katy J Pearson

The Obelisk Arena was my next destination for the wonderfully named Los Bitchos. They supply Latin-tinged indie instrumentals, many of which could add something as a soundtrack to TV shows like ‘Breaking Bad’. Their sound reminded me at times of Colour Me Wednesday with added South American percussion and obviously no Jennifer Doveton on vocals. Los Bitchos are a very good band, but I felt vocals would have helped carry the tunes better. That said, a particular highlight for me was “Lindsay Goes To Mykonos” which is apparently about Lindsay Lohan. Katy J Pearson was next on the BBC Sounds Stage. I last saw her just over a year ago at the Crescent in York. Her music is rather special and she has a style that is quite difficult to compare with other artists. Although there were times when she sounded a little like Linda Ronstadt. If you like US West Coast country rock from the early 70s, or Americana and alt. country you will almost certainly love Katy J Pearson. The band has a great brass section and Katy’s voice was immaculate. “Beautiful Soul” was a highlight for me. I returned to the Obelisk Arena for Foals, a band I saw quite a few years ago when they sounded like a good Kasabian crossed with Kings Of Leon. Since then they have become perhaps one of the best bands in the UK, particularly in a live setting. The more dance-oriented material is perfect for bringing a festival to life and Foals most certainly applied a fully cranked musical defibrillator to Latitude. Foals didn’t just bring the crowd alive they took us to musical Valhalla. The light show and screen display were clever, powerful, and sublime. I especially loved the kaleidoscopic, Rorschachy style moving and evolving ink blots. The confetti explosion added an eeriness to proceedings as the confetti just hung in the air, maybe because of the heat of the day or the heat of the crowd. This was a stonking set from a magnificent band.

All the photos, apart from the poster, were taken using my cheap Chinese android phone. The videos were all found on YouTube. If one of them is yours and you would like me to credit you or take it down please let me know.

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Latitude Festival 2022- Day 1 – Friday 22nd July July 29, 2022


After a relatively disappointing Day 0 at the Latitude Festival, I was looking forward to a more exciting day on Friday, officially Day 1. First up it was Larkin Poe on the Obelisk Arena stage, made up of sisters Rebecca and Megan Lovell. One for fact fans out there is that the sisters are distant relatives of horror maestro and supremely talented author Edgar Allan Poe. They produce some fabulous southern blues rock, which fits given that they are from Atlanta and now reside in Nashville. Rebecca and Megan sure know how to rock and how to wow an audience. I would put them in the same lineage and rock Geneology as Canned Heat, Creedence Clearwater Revival, and maybe Lynrd Skynrd. Check them out, the most recent album, their fifth, ‘Self Made Man’ is rather good. Next, it was off to the Sunrise Arena for American singer-songwriter Penelope Scott. She is not a run-of-the-mill singer-songwriter though, she has deep lyrics and frankly some bloody hilarious lyrics. The dark-humoured and deep “American Healthcare” is a stunningly well-put-together song. The line “I did not become a doctor just to suck the devil’s dick” stayed in my head for ages. Penelope is an obscenely talented troubadour in the vein of Jonathan Richman combined with the wit and wisdom of Peaches. I haven’t seen an artist having so much fun on stage for ages. I am most definitely a Penelope Scott fan now!

Larkin Poe
Penelope Scott

The Alcove Stage was the setting for the next act that I encountered. The wonderfully named Sniffany and the Nits. This lot is a punk band from London who are very loud and sometimes hilarious. A bit like Siouxsie and the Banshees with the earnestness and seriousness stripped away. Ultimately though, and maybe it was just some muddy sound mixing, it was difficult to tell one song from another. Ripon’s magnificently talented Billie Marten was flying the flag for Yorkshire on the Obelisk Arena stage next. I last encountered Billie at a small gig in York some five years ago. Since then she has matured into a wonderfully voiced and eloquent songwriter. Her stage presence and audience rapport are spot on. Her album ‘Flora Fauna’ from last year is well worth a listen. I stayed at the Obelisk Arena for Mdou Moctar who blend Tuareg and Saharan sounds, especially the beats, with western rock. Moctar totally rocked the Arena Stage. This was a great performance from a truly great band. Almost 47 years ago the first band I ever saw at a festival was also an African fusion group. It was Osibisa at the Reading Festival in 1975. The Obelisk Arena had a great Friday line up so I remained for Rina Sawayama. She produces rich, dark, pop grooves which sometimes have a real hard rock edge. Rina getting the crowd at the most middle-class festival in the UK (and possibly the world) to chat “Shut the fuck up” was quite special. Some of the more synth-driven tunes are sublime slices of 21st Century R & B and pop hybrids. This woman oozes musical talent.

Sniffany and the Nits

Next, it was a quick dash to the BBC Sounds Stage for Maximo Park. This band has been around forever. Well technically maybe seventeen years which was when their debut album ‘A Certain Trigger’ was released. Amazingly they just seem to get better and better each time that I see them. The band is incredibly tight and Paul Smith’s social conscience is something to be proud of. But that doesn’t make them over-earnest and po-faced, Maximo Park knows how to entertain a crowd as well. I was keen to encounter Modest Mouse once again after a gap of quite a few years, so I ran over to the Obelisk Arena. In fact, I probably got into Modest Mouse quite late. After reading Johnny Marr’s autobiography I rediscovered them. They are a phenomenal band, especially live. Every song is a classic and frontman Isaac Brock is a man for these times with a world-weary philosophical view of life.

Self Esteem

A quick dash back to the BBC Sounds Stage to catch Self Esteem was next on the agenda. In 47 years of festival going this magnificent set by Self Esteem was undoubtedly one of the finest festival sets that I have ever experienced and I have seen some classics, notably Jeff Buckley, Nirvana, and Radiohead to name just a few. This was a truly spectacular and incredible performance from Self Esteem, a.k.a Rebecca, and her heavenly backing singers, booming bass player, and extraordinarily talented drummer. The latter being the token male in the band. Rebecca has a vocal range that many singers would be prepared to die for. It reminded me at times of Dame David at his operatic best. She has the power and presence of Lady Gaga and Madonna and works the audience into a perfect frenzy. I love that Rebecca brought on a fabulous group of LGBTQ people t the end of the set to dance on stage with her and the band. One Self Esteem lyric tells us that we “need to be more brave“, but it is clear that Rebecca is already super brave in attitude and performance. Self Esteem made Latitude 2022 a truly great festival and spectacle. Where did she get all those Boots Advantage cards? It was back to the Obelisk Arena after that for Maggie Rogers. After that mind-blowing set from Self Esteem, anything that followed was likely to be anti-climatic and less exciting for me. But Maggie Rogers was a gorgeous elixir to help ease that come down. She has a great R & B style voice and her band was magical. The audience lapped up every moment. Based on this I believe that her upcoming album will be something very special. It had been a long and emotionally draining day, thanks Self Esteem, so I headed off to my tent after Maggie Rogers. I really wasn’t up for Lewis Capaldi or Phoebe Bridgers. Although a good friend of mine told me that I missed a brilliant set from A Certain Ratio! I guess you can’t win them all, right?

All the photos, apart from the poster, were taken using my cheap Chinese android phone. The videos were all found on YouTube. If one of them is yours and you would like me to credit you or take it down please let me know.

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Latitude Festival 2022- Day 0 – Thursday 21st July July 27, 2022


Having arrived at Henham Park in Suffolk Thursday afternoon for my fourth attendance at the Latitude Festival after a hellish drive from York I was determined to see at least something on what I will call Day 0 of Latitude 2022. I chose to see the Instant Scorechestra on the Lavish Lounge Stage as it was an act that had been recommended to me. Instant Scorechestra is an immersive concept that fuses music, which is very much improvised, played by three key musicians alongside a host of music students and musical volunteers. It is played live in an attempt to provide new soundscapes to classic films which are simultaneously shown on the big screen. I stayed for the ‘Dawn Of Man’ chapter of the Stanley Kubrick masterpiece ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’. Regular readers will know that my musical taste is eclectic and that I am open to experimentation in music. But for me, this was somewhat jarring and came across like a bad, very, very self-indulgent jazz workout. In the Instant Scorechestra’s favour, I thought it was great that so many people, including kids, were able to take part. The kid with the stylophone was really enjoying it. Bottom line though I think that John Lennon may well have described this as avant-garde. So not my best start to a Latitude Festival, but I was hopeful that things would improve. Did they? Well, you will need to read the next three instalments to find out!

The Dawn Of Man Chapter from 2001: A Space Odyssey – original soundtrack

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