10th June 2014
Glastonbudget Festival 2014
Home page for our
Report on the festival
This is the main page for our report on the Glastonbudget Music Festival of 2014.
The Glastonbudget Music Festival took place on 23rd to 25th May 2014.
Apart from the photos we published as part of our report, many others are available on the ‘web.
A very comprehensive album of photos, taken by the professional media people is available on The GlastonBudget Facebook Photo Albums page.
We have many, many photos to put up, thanks to the work of our photographer at the festival – Mat Borland.
Glastonbudget Festival 2014
Photos by © Mat Borland
by Trevor Locke
The one thing that will always remain in my mind about this year’s Glastonbudget Festival was the mud. Several days of rain before the Saturday had waterlogged many of the areas where human feet had stirred up the soil to produce puddles of mud. Well, what is festival without mud? It has become seared into the memory of festival-goers ever since that well-publicised Glastonbury event in 2005 when photos of fans covered in the brown gunge appeared in all the newspapers. It would take more than a little rain to dampen the spirits of the people who attend rock festivals. It just goes to show what a townie I am when I even notice a little mud here and there. To be fair, the field at Wymeswold was nowhere near as bad as Download in 2012, by comparison to which, it is a well-drained site.
This year’s site layout had not changed that much over last year; some new stages, some things in different places but overall the fields seemed to me to be much same as I remembered from last year.
The stages: the main stage was where the big tribute bands played; The Big Top lined up a variety of bands under the blue ‘canvas’ with its substantial performance area, the Loco stage brought in a new configuration from last year’s Charnie Arnie marquee and the old Saddleback stage had been transformed into the Icon stage.
It wasn’t all bad; the crowds of music lover also enjoyed some fine, sunny weather.
The food stalls offered an array of cuisines and the beer tent was stocked with a bewildering variety of ales. It was a well organised event, by and large, but with complex large-scale things such as this, no doubt something went wrong somewhere. Bear in mind that hundreds of people were working to make these three days happen – from sound engineers to security guards, from an army of volunteers through to the organising staff whose job is to start organising the next festival, the moment the current one has finished.
Glastonbudget is always a family-friendly event; the crowd included tiny tots through to people of my age – an all-ages event where the family environment is respected as far as possible at a rock festival. As with all such festivals – those with many stages and hundreds of bands – the programme is the must have tool for serious music lovers. Large numbers of people could be seen making their way from stage to stage in order to be at the performance of their choice. Clashes are inevitable but for most people, most of the time, it was possible to see bands that would satisfy the desires of even the most ardent devotee of genres. It was all about studying the programme and being where you wanted to be at the right time.
If you go to a rock festival, you can hear your most loved musical treat but, if your inquisitive, it can also be a voyage of discovery. You can choose what you want to hear, what you know and are familiar with, or you can browse the acts and find something new that you had not heard before. At Glastonbudget there was no shortage of ‘new’, alongside the well-established sounds of the tribute acts. A tribute festival is quintessentially about re-living the past, musically, but, since its inception ten years ago, Glastonbudget has also celebrated new bands and new music.
For several months before the event, the organisers had held audition gigs at which bands and singers could perform in order to get a booking for the festival. Those fortunate to be selected got a chance to play in front of people, many of whom might not have heard them before. In this respect, Glastonbudget has a side to its activities not dissimilar to the ‘Introducing’ stages of Glastonbury or the rising bands stages of Reading and Leeds. Festivals can, and often have been, important milestones in the career of a new band or act.
Festivals in general, and Glastonbudget in particular are parties, events at which groups of friends enjoy each others company, dress up in funny clothes and drink beer in large quantities – as part of a musical experience that is hard to equal.
I attended on Saturday; unlike previous years when I could be there all weekend, this year, as last, restricted me to one day. I saw as much as I could but my personal highlights were The Bobcats in the Loco stage and Jonezy on the Icon stage.
The Bobcats is a Leicester band that has taken off big time this year. The band’s set of blues rock songs resulted an an avalanche of comments from festival-goers, all of whom agreed that it was one of the best performances from the many ‘new acts’ on the festival programme.
On the Icon stage, local music artist Jonezy performed with the amazing young singer from Norway Alexandru. Jonezy’s set attracted a big audience, just as he did last year, and many people who were walking past stopped to listen as they heard the infectious hip-hop and drum and bass beats.
Many of the up and coming bands of Leicester were at this year’s festival; band such as Casino Empire, The Bench That Rocked, FourPointOh, Beneath The Lights, 8Miles High, Stating The Obvious and I Surrender.
Also on this year’s programme were established bands such as Formal Warning, Ferris, Axis Mundi, The Moderators, Skam, Luzon Bleeding Heart, The Brandy Thieves, Eden Avenue, the Fores, The Furies, Flying Kangaroo Alliance, singers Dan Wright, Calder McLaughlin and George Simpson.
That represents a considerable wealth of talent and I had been present at quite a few of the auditions that were held at The Shed when they were selected for this year’s event.
Other pages in this report:
our report on Glastonbudget in 2013