Preview: NARC. Fest
NARC. Fest takes place on Saturday 21st July across 7 venues in the Ouseburn Valley. All events are free and form the musical side of the annual Ouseburn Community Festival. We’ll be previewing each venue’s entertainment right up until the day of the festival, you can also read the full line-up in the July issue of NARC. magazine, out now.
PRANCEY DOG @ FREE TRADE INN
Doors open 5.30pm
The ever-reliable Prancey Dog can always be turned to for a storming line-up at NARC. Fest and this year’s no exception. Prancey’s headliner for this year’s festival are The Bobby McGees’s, whose return to Newcastle is long overdue. The Brighton-based band deliver a ukulele stage show like no other act on the planet and Prancey main-man Chris Trew promises they’re the best live act you’ll ever see. Better find out for yourself then eh? Whetting your appetite for the headliner are The Lindsay Tin, the debut live outing for Paul Jeans (Jeans goes POP!) and Paul Christian Patterson (d_rradio/Dark Sky Singers) who will even be keeping their recorded output to themselves until a week before the gig. We’re expecting dark folk and a mesmerising live show. Rexine formed after being stuck in a lift together at an upholstery factory and their post-punk girl mayhem reflects that perfectly (I imagine…), while Waskerley Way’s mayhem is more of a damaged loop and sample variety, his self-aware electronic is no less mesmerising. Opening the show will be Euan Lynn whose surfy punky music is made with a Game Boy and a guitar.
THE TANNERS ARMS
The Tanners will become a haven for indie rock and pop goodness. There’s still a couple of acts to be announced, but so far you can whet your whistle with lush musical loveliness from The Exes, a three-piece that fuse their garage roots with indie pop in bundles of three-minute ditties; and Krautrock space rockers Parastatic, a Newcastle three-piece full of shoe-gazey goodness.
STAR & SHADOW CINEMA
Doors open 6pm
There’s visual and aural treats on offer at the Star & Shadow. Headlining the night are Newcastle’s best kept secret, NWAVI, whose electronica and techno is so rarely seen live it’ll be a set to behold. Ably supporting are Brad Field and Tim Shaw, having cut their teeth playing with SDF and DJing at Inertia for the last 10 years, they have become nationally renowned for their post-post-dubstep time signatures, frankly, we’re lucky they still play in Newcastle they’re that damn good. Also a sight for sore eyes (and ears) are the Noize Choir, the brainchild of Marek Gabrysch, in which a bunch of people get together and, using only what God gave them – no musical instruments allowed – create music (if you can call it that), a splendid sight and sound. Opening the night, 19 year old prodigy Carl Heslop will play a classic Compton cinema organ which he’s rebuilt himself. Specialising in playing accompaniment to silent films, he’ll play a live score on the first cinema organ in the North East since the 1950s.
THE GREAT NORTHERN STAGE @ THE CLUNY
NARC. / KYEO.TV / THE RAT PROMOTIONS STAGE @ THE CLUNY 2
Doors open 6pm
A spirit of collaboration is in the air at The Cluny, as both The Cluny and Cluny 2 venues work in harmony to produce a superb ear drum smashing line-up with no time clashes! The Great Northern at The Cluny present Stalking Horse as their headliner. The Leeds-based band is the new project from Neil ‘Wu’ Widdop, former member of This Et Al. The band’s recent album is full of dreamy rock-scapes and richly textured songs and the live act features musicians from such illustrious bands as Grammatics, Duels and These Monsters. You’re in for a treat. Ably assisting proceedings are local noise giants Ryoga, returning from a six month hiatus where they’ve been writing ambitious new material ready to debut at this event; the five-headed riff monster that is Fathoms, whose cosmic metal will dazzle; and Northumberland quartet Cinematic Submarine, who fit more musical genres into one song, than most bands fit into an entire set.
The story is a similarly noisy one over at The Cluny 2, as this fair magazine and its sister website KYEO team up with The Rat Promotions to bring sludgy, dirty, fuzzy and noisy bands to the masses. Headlined by everyone’s favourite sludge rock mentalists Nately’s Whore’s Kid Sister, this will be a truly intense performance in the venue’s dark surrounds. They’re supported by dirty noise rockers Brown Brogues, the latest of many marvels to come out of Manchester; punk/hardcore brothers Drenge, whose songs are a crashing collision of sweetly shouted tales of love, feedback and violent drums; the back-to-basics noisy melodic punkers Lunn Poly; and lo-fi, emotional pop rock from Sunday League.
THE TEA PAD PRESENTS STAGE @ THE CUMBERLAND ARMS
Doors open at 6pm.
Men of the Ouseburn Delta, The 78s kick off the evening with everything from Peter Green-era Fleetwood Mac to Little Walter and Howlin’ Wolf. The guys play the blues as it’s meant to be played. Without gimmicks, without effects, without stunning laser light shows set to Pink Floyd albums.
The marvellous nouveau country of Honey Bop Trio will keep your toes tapping and your date spinning as they bring their own brand of rockabilly to The Cumberland Arms & The Tea Party stage. Clear some space, don your dancing shoes and let lead singer Hannah Rickard’s soaring vocals delight and thrill you. But not like that, you mucky pup.
“Holy Moly, what a bunch of crackers!” is what a lazier writer might have said about Newcastle’s own Holy Moly & The Crackers. With their new album released this week, their Romany-influenced circus-folk evokes as much a sense of hedonistic delight as it does a sense of wistful cloud-staring melancholy.
Cumberland regulars Rob Heron & the Tea Pad Orchestra top the evening off with their heady mix Western Swing, gypsy Jazz, country, Cajun and rag-time blues. Their nights at the Cumberland Arms, along with touring the UK with Pokey LaFarge & The South City Three has fired them to glory and infamy throughout the North East and even further afield. As if that wasn’t enough, you’ll be able to get your paws on their debut album later in the summer.
All this plus alcohol-laden teapots, fig rolls (with real figs!), bourbons and bourbon! You can’t say fairer than that.
LEAVE ME HERE STAGE @ THE TYNE
Doors open at 6pm, with a special guest act TBA.
Newcastle four-piece Cauls play early on in the evening. The band formed in early 2009 and have since moulded their own sound reminiscent of acts such as At The Drive In, Radiohead and Mewithoutyou. Comprised of a driving rhythm section which is complimented by effects laden vocals and guitar, they conjure soundscapes akin to Brian Eno and Boards of Canada which lead into powerful riff-based choruses.
Cauls have been busy in the studio recording their new EP, so gigs have been few and far between over recent months. That’s set to change with their performance at NARC. Fest and they’ll be test driving their new material, so you’ll be in for a treat!
The scope of The Family Elan’s output is broad, ranging from self penned reflective meditations which rotate on a devotional harmonic axis, to irreverent interpretations of Bollywood hits, to Turkic folk forms filtered through a psychedelic rock praxis.
Perhaps the unifying strand in all this is a deep interest in traditional music forms and their reinvention through communal group playing, in the current instance very much rooted in the Bradford DIY ‘no rave’ aesthetic.
“Rapturous experimental folk, tinged with East European promise.” UNCUT
Juffage performances have been compared to a synthesis of Lightning Bolt’s rhythmic ferocity, Radiohead’s lush pop sensibility, King Tubby’s manipulative production, and Andrew Bird’s ability to make a good loop. The result has been described as a loud, frantic, and beautiful “hyperactive and technically accomplished display”. Should prove an interesting mix!
Queer’d Science are a Manchester-based 6-legged, heavily percussive raving flamingo hybrid, peddling chunked up, driving grooves that pop and fizzle, puttin’ smokey bass in your chest, stomach and groin.
Headliner for the night is Rejections, the monkier of Teesside based musician, journalist and writer Michael Hann, who produces a psychedelic cut up of dub, techno, noise and drone. In 2011 he released the Concur EP on Tiny Lights and at the end of May 2012 he released the Whiteout EP on the same label and also the Clone EP on Alt Vinyl.
- NARC. Fest 2010 Takes Over Ouseburn