Belfast, Norther Ireland– I revved the engine and headed north for the weekend to the Titanic Slipways. My rucksack prepared with a pile of oranges and pear, I set off with all the good intentions. The BBC 6 hosted the Biggest Weekend Ever in an attempt to replace Glastonbury Music Festival that will not be on this year covering Belfast, Perth, Swansea and Coventry. The weather was lovely, no mud.
Originally drawn in by First Aid Kit and Young Fathers, I was surprised at the various performances. It was a nice blend of old world with modern momentum but quaint along the docks. I fell in love on the second stage with a local band called SOAK. Exquisite pitch and a style without pretense, Bridie Monds-Watson charmed me straight away. Here’s just a taste from my recordings.
Because they wanted a tener for a hard copy of the program and my mobile is one step up from a burner, I met some friendlies who let me in on a few secrets.
Imarhan, a desert rock band from Algeria engaged everything that I believe to be at my center and I was happy about it even though I could not understand a word they were saying. Well, except when he said thank you…in French.
His contact, body language and demeanor complimented his tight band who were just having fun together.
Mesmerized afterwards, I could not resist eating festival food and taking a pint to the face. Listen, hear, here.
The bartender almost fell over when I tried to pay with Euros, he should of been happy I didn’t make it rain with a million dollar bills y’all. After my political faux pas I returned to the side stage to meet this bitch from Brighton.
Their band of badass called Dream Wife had the moves of a hurricane with all the loyalty of your hometown squad. A perfect mix, plus the guitarist was nothing short of a mastermind. Looks, technique and clothing choices, completely unwrapped and you could feel it. In truth, it scared me a little. Young Fathers was overwhelming but I am grateful for their consistent energy and enthusiasm throughout their performance.
My main event pulled on my heart strings a we bit. Built up in my mind, the two Swedish sisters, were honest and abundant. A juxtaposition of dress and motif, they played in perfect harmony. The background visuals had their moments but always brought me back through time and space.
With a day in Portrush to spare, I was delighted.
I didn’t see Super Organism, but they might be worth checking out…and as always, Ta!