The ins and outs of #Indie16

INDIE 16 Official Aftermovie

While I’m sickened I didn’t manage to make a cameo in the official aftermovie, I have to say what a weekend! I didn’t count the amount of times it was mentioned but with the layout of the stages, the campsites and the massive lineup, Indiependence is rapidly becoming a better Oxegen.

We arrived quite late on the Friday evening so, in spite of all my talking, we missed Saint Sister. There was a mad dash to get the camp set up as quickly as possible and our Girl Guide training certainly paid off (thanks Mom!).  The tent was up in jig time and we headed for the Main Stage just in time to hear the end of the Strypes and were in poll position for Bellx1.

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Bell x1 playing the Main Stage, Friday.

I have a particularly soft spot for Bellx1 and after everyone absolutely raving about them at the Galway Arts Festival I was really looking forward to seeing them at Independence. They sounded amazing live and I was thrilled to see the first big crowd of the festival out to support a homegrown act. A good chunk of the set was taken up with newer material that fans were less familiar with and lead singer Paul Noonan did a lot of talking inbetween, some of it quite rameish-y, so it was a welcome respite when the band played some of their better knows hits and their Bowie tribute had the place rocking and rolling in fitting fashion. After Bellx1 we headed for the Craft Beer Shed and this proved to be the find of the weekend. It was relatively quiet on Friday but by Sunday evening, word had spread and there was barely room to swing a cat. All that and the fact the rain held off meant we were off to a flying start!

Saturday afternoon was mainly spent BBQing up a storm in the carpark with the Boys Across the Road aka the most prepared campers in Europe. They had a mini-fridge in the Jeep, a portable BBQ and plenty of grub so we were happy out. The only fly in the ointment was security informing us on the way out of the camp (1 PM approx) that there would be no alcohol allowed in after curfew.. at 2PM and none allowed in at all on Sunday. This led to a flurry of frantic phone calls to friends of ours who were on the way and others who were not due until later in the evening. Obviously, music fesitvals are about much more than booze but I thought this was an inconvenience and should probably have been highlighted better before the event to give ticket holders arriving late a fair chance. However, I’m sure that security had their reasons and seeing as the festival went off without a hitch, I’m happy enough with that.

Eva, who tagged along with me to the festival decided that Picture This were playing on Saturday  so at 5PM she rounded up our campsite and frog marched us to the Mainstage. It was actually Neon Wolf who were playing (Picture This were Sunday) but the boys were excellent in any case so what harm. We spent the rest of the evening shuffling between Pleasure Beach, Hudson Taylor and Little Hours but when 9 o clock rolled around we were firmly planted in the Main Stage for Walking on Cars and the Kooks. The boys from Dingle were showstopping. The sound was absolutely perfect and I think the majority of the packed to capacity tent had goosebumps for the duration of their set. A tough act to follow but the Kooks were well able, belting out the classics they had the crowd singing along to favourites like Ooh La and She Moves in her own Way. Both were definite highlights for me. We caught a brief part of the Blizzards as we passed and, with the stages winding down, it was time for another trip to the Craft Beer Shed and the 80s v 90s. The place was heaving and we definitely danced our little cotton socks off Saturday night.

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Neon Wolf (NOT Picture This) playing the Main Stage, Saturday.

Sunday we were a lot slower out of the blocks and took it fairly handy. We spent the day catching up with friends and the ghosts of festivals past, which is one of my favourite parts of festivals and definitely the reason I spend my weekends trekking around the country. Consensus in the campsite was that the Saturday night had been a resounding success and everyone was looking forward to Picture This and Editors.

I spent a lot of Sunday evening at the Red Bull Stage or the Techno Tent as I rebranded it and had an absolute ball. I also managed to catch then end of the Editors set so I was one happy bunny. In keeping with tradition, we finished the night in the Beer Hall watching a 6ft man with ‘auburn’ hair bust a move to a Michael Jackson mashup and if that doesn’t sum up a great weekend, I don’t know what does.

Overall, we had a smashing weekend. The festival was really well organized, the night security staff were fantastic, as were all of the volunteers. Music-wise, it was great. After 4 years of trying to see Walking on Cars perform I finally ticked them off the list, ideal! Would I change anything? More toilets, but shur don’t I say that after every festival. Well done to all involved, really looking forward to what #Indie17 has in store.

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Indiependence: Fail to Prepare, Prepare to Fail.

Last weekend I went to Knockanstockan in Blessington, Co. Wicklow. Of the 200 odd acts that played there I’d say I managed to see about 3 and a half. Of course, I really go to Knockanstockan for the craic and meeting people plus this year I was volunteering so all in all 3 and a half acts wasn’t bad considering.. But, with the whopper line up Indiependence are bringing to the table this year I think it’s about time I got my act together..

I’ve never been to Indiependence before but I’ve heard great things. The capacity is about 10,000 people so it’s nice and compact and shouldn’t be too hard to bop from stage to stage. This year marks the eleventh installment of Indiependence and, in a nod to their humble beginnings in the square in Michelstown, they’ve introduced a music trail which will see musicians and bands performing outside local businesses on Saturday and Sunday from noon to 3PM. According to the blurb, this trail provieds young acts with a platform to launch their music at one of Ireland’s most popular music festivals.

Indiependence Music Trail Map and Times 2016.

Once the trail is wrapped up, its back onsite for the festival proper. The stages don’t open until late afternoon so there’s plenty of time to get organized and make the most of the evening’s entertainment.

As far as I can see, Friday is relatively straightforward. I’ll be hoping to hit Saint Sister in the Big Top to make up for missing them at Townlands. Then over to the Main Stage for The Strypes and bell X1 who got rave reviews following their recent performance at the Galway Arts Festival. We’ll round the night off with KC in the Red Bull tent and the Silent Disco.

Saturday is slightly trickier and there are a few clashes. I reckon the Main Stage will be our perch for Pleasure Beach, Hudson Taylor, fellow Kerry natives Walking on Cars and the Kooks then shimmy over to the Big Top to catch then end of the Blizzards. Bressie.. swoon ❤

Sunday is the day of reckoning. A bit like Hozier, Wyvern Lingo are an act I cannot seem to pin down. We were in there first with Letter to Willow on Flirt FM only to find out they gave an interview 2 days later, unbeknownst to us. They were the surprise act at Knockanstockan last Saturday night which I turned up 2 hours late for so I’m determined to see them this Sunday at 20.30 in the Big Top. Other than that, Ash and Editors are the obvious two and if I can squeeze in a little bit of King Kong Company I’ll be laughing all the way back to the tent. I’d also love love LOVE to make it to Pleasure Beach… A girl can dream!!

Here’s the full line up in case you haven’t seen it yet and a site map for good measure. Time to get the highlighters out guys.. See ye at the Main Stage – x

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Stage times for Indiependence 2016

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Sitemap of Indiependence 2016

Wyvern Lingo live session at Flirt FM 101.3

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So I think it’s fair to say that Ian and I have been RAVING about Wyvern Lingo on our show (For the Record, Tuesdays at 11) for the past 2 months.. (serious fangirl stuff!)

The talented trio, Karen, Caoimhe and Saoirse all hail from Bray, Co. Wicklow and have previously supported Hozier on the UK leg of his tour. These self professed alt-pop tunesters are destined for very big things indeed in our humble opinion!

Anyway, last Friday the girls dropped into Flirty Towers ahead of their gig in the Roisin Dubh and treated us all to a live rendition of “Letter for Willow”. If you haven’t heard any of their stuff, do yourself a favour and check out the Youtube link below.

The official Letter to Willow EP launch will be taking place on April 1st at the Button Factory in Dublin where the girls will be supported by none other than the stunning Sinead White, another gem I discovered at Knockanstockan last year. Tickets are a steal at €16 and available from all Ticketmaster outlets or via the girls’ website http://www.wyvernlingo.com/tour/

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