Well good afternoon. I’m typing this entry crouched in the brace position as the U.K. waits for some kind of apocalyptic, Sharknado type of weather assault. While we wait for our impending windy doom, I’m reminiscing over last weekend’s Gathering Festival that took place in Oxford. I’ve played the stupidest card in the book and started listening to the whole line-up now the festival is over. So to make the most of my stupidity in not getting to see everything, I thought a little post-Gathering special would be fun, dedicated to my favourite acts that I didn’t see. Logical right? And besides, my review on who I did manage to see will be up on Bearded Magazine soon enough.
PYLO – Enemies
A relatively new band who have just a smattering of tracks available, PYLO are a British rock band producing particularly widescreen music. ‘Enemies’ is a good jumping off point, showcasing their sound. I feel like ‘Stadium Rock’ is quite a dirty term to throw around these days, but with a track that ebbs and builds towards its crescendo ending, along with a big sing along chorus, PYLO are creating something interesting here.
Kimberly Anne – Bury It There
Can we attribute an explosion in prominent solo singer/songwriter/guitar players to the wave of pop recognition for Ed Sheeran/Ben Howard, or have these people always been there? Well, I think the latter, but there’s such a great variation in the scene at the moment as everyone has their own voice and sound. Kimberly Anne is one such person, who has some serious melodic chops. Her track ‘Bury It There’ is one I’ve played over and over since realising a) she existed, and b) I didn’t see her at Gathering. At the heart of her music is a strength for writing lyrics and melodies, and with the help of additional production, it’s music that’s grabbed me. With two EPs to date, including the ‘Bury It There’ EP, Kimberly Anne is a name to remember.
Mt. Wolf – Life Sized Ghosts
Captivating. Enigmatic. Atmospheric. Mount Wolf is a borough in York County, Pennsylvania, and may very well be one of those things. Mt. Wolf are a four piece based in London who are all of these things. What I enjoy most is singer Kate Sproule’s voice. She has a high range, adding to the ethereal sound of the group (showcased most prominently on ‘Life Sized Ghosts’). Not to say what surrounds it isn’t bad either. A track like ‘Hypolight’ showcases a mix between acoustic guitar, electronic beats and whiffs of warm synths.
Jaymes Young – Dark Star
A U.S. artist who is currently on tour with London Grammar, Jaymes Young creates R’n’B seeped electro. Listening to his ‘Dark Star’ EP released this year, there’s not a note out-of-place. The track ‘Dark Star’ itself is a pulsing supernova, with subtle bass-wobbles accompanying the melodic peaks of Young’s voice and smooth synths floating above.
Fyfe – Solace
It took me about 30 seconds of listening to Fyfe to place that voice. Why, it’s David’s Lyre (/Paul Dixon, the man behind it). One of my favourite albums from last year , the project was canned when the first album was released, put out on a ‘pay as much as you want’ deal. David’s Lyre was much more of a traditional indie effort, with guitars and the like, whereas Fyfe jumps on the electro / R’n’B boat. Solace does sneak some guitars in there, but it’s a glossy sounding track, filled with choral sounding synths and timid electro drums.
And to make all of your lives easier, below is a Spotify playlist showcasing favourites that I did and didn’t see from Gathering Festival 2013!