Safety In Sound is off to 2000 Trees! After hearing about the Cheltenham festival repeatedly during my first year of University, I began to suspect that it was a place that should be on my radar (if only for the amazing sounding bacon sandwiches), and so this year, I took the plunge and was lucky enough to be invited by the team to attend as press.
Celebrating its 8th birthday this summer, 2000 Trees has established itself as one of the leading small festivals in the British summer calendar, winning the Grass Roots Festival Award in the UK Festival Awards 2013 and 2010 voted for by festival fans, which is always a promising sign - after all, its the punters you should be impressing, not just the men in suits. Word on the street is that their toilets are pretty darn special too, always a plus.
With a reputation for booking UK acts and prioritising the underground and overlooked, I'm pretty excited about discovering some new talent, not to mention catching up the hoards of friends who I know attend every year. Naturally a full review is to follow, but until then, here are the ten acts I'm most excited about seeing...
1)Kids In Glass Houses
Undisputedly the band I am most excited about seeing, KIGH's slot at Trees is part of their last ever festival season having announced their split a few months ago. Some may mock, but I've deeply regret not making the effort to see them live more than the handful of times I have in the past - Aled's voice is phenomenal live and it'll surely be a set tinged with poignancy.
Riding the crest of the 'ones to watch' wave, Wolf Alice are fast becoming a SIS festival staple and with their album impending, their setlist should have developed even more from the excellent set I saw them put in at Beacons last summer.
Another pop punk favourite, Canterbury's latest album may have underwhelmed a little, but here's hoping that the quartet will bring out some treats from their debut 'Thank You' which saw them threaten to de-throne You Me At Six in the battle for the catchiest emo chorus crown.
As a massive Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly fan, I am a little wary of seeing Sam Duckworth in his unmasked guise. However, he's a talented lad and I'm sure whatever new music he has been working on will go down nicely alongside Trees craft ale that I have heard so much about. Here's hoping for at least a cheeky rendition of 'Call Me Ishmael'.
When your boyfriend's best friend is a musician, there's always the risk that you'll have to go to their shows, pretend to like their music in the interests of politeness and then be destined to a life of awkwardly singing along to god awful shows. Luckily for me, my boyfriend's friend is Ben Marwood, a bloody great singer-songwriter who is always delightful to watch live. I know Ben has a bit of a history of playing at Trees so I'm pretty stoked to see him in his 'natural' habitat.
6)Blood Red Shoes
Having been a fan of theirs for a long time but never really experiencing more than a few fleeting festival moments of their live show, I'll be down the front early for Blood Red Shoes. Their desire to reinvent and ignore industry fads makes them a solid offering in my book, and they were lovely to interview back in 2012 to boot.
Apparently it near-on is illegal to like Los Campesinos! and Joanna Gruesome as much as me and not like Johnny Foreigner, but as my knowledge of them currently is fairly limited, my expectations will be high come Trees time. A quick Youtube session has confirmed that they are likely up my street, but only a live set can really tell....
Another boyfriend's friend (I promise I'm not trying to namedrop on purpose, it just seems that 2000 Trees attracts the Reading crowd), I am yet to experience Barry Dolan and co's acoustic-metal live in any guise, not least with his new full band. Needless to say I'm looking forward to it - after all, who doesn't love acoustic-metal? Even the genre sounds ace.
Yet another band I have always taken a passing interest in, I'm looking to 2000 Trees to provide me a not-so-gentle introduction to a band who've been described as 'smashing the living daylights out of you and still leave you begging for more.' Sounds like fun.
10)Boat To Row
When the hangover has kicked in and wading through mud has sapped me of all my energy, I can't think of many bands more lovely to listen to than Boat to Row. Here's hoping for a gently whimsical experience to rival the time at Reading Festival where I discovered Benjamin Francis Leftwich and spent the entire set lying on a blanket with my eyes closed like some discarded hippie. Bliss.
See below for the full festival line up.
For more information and to buy tickets, visit