The Great Escape 2012

MMOTHS

And to the final day of The Great Escape. We packed our tuna sandwiches and strolled down to The Prince Albert to catch the first act of the day, MMOTHS. Dreamlike electronica, and a gentle start to the day, at the less than bursting venue, where the sound and temperature were all as you would hope. A good Prince Albert experience and I came away wanting to hear more.

22

Last year we enjoyed watching the energetic ramblings of 22, as they punched a hole in the Queen’s Hotel roof. Not our sort of music, but a good show nonetheless, we caught them jumping around, performing guitar battles again at Komedia. The dark underground venue with its dank wooden floor was a better setting for this maniacal act. I guess they’re best described as Norwegian nu-metal math pop (maybe?).

We met up with Mark’s friend from Bristol, Luke and set off again, now five-strong. Sam wanted to catch Bwani Junction, so we hastily walked to Horatio’s on the pier, to find the venue closed and all acts moved to The Warren. We’d been keeping an eye out for tweets to avoid things like this, and we weren’t particularly happy. Starving, I pulled out my tuna sandwich for lunch. Do not ever eat a fish sandwich on the pier.

Heading back along the wooden slats, a winged beast swooped from behind, scratching my neck, grabbing my sandwich and escaping with 50% of the loot. Blasted seagull!

Red Ink, Chet Faker, Jinja Safari

Digital was the nearest venue so we nipped in to catch the Australian acts performing. On stage were the unscheduled Red Ink, soulful alternative R&B. We moved upstairs and resumed our balcony seating. We grabbed a free CD at the end of the set, along with one of the Agent Side Grinder samplers that was lying around. (We heard they were ‘excellent’ with their analogue electronics and programmed drums).

Chet Faker appeared next with his own brand of lo-fi electronic soul and No Diggity cover. He normally plays with a band, but a long way from home, he was a one man act with samplers, et al. Playing just his third European gig, he was brilliant.

Chet Faker
Chet Faker

The final act of the session was Jinja Safari, a mad quintet that leaped around with citars playing some form of indie pop. Their energy created a good show, but the music was all a little normal.

Jinja Safari
Jinja Safari

In the sun we lay on the beach again, skimming the few flat pebbles across the sea, bounce, bounce, plunk. The dinner break took place at Zizzi’s. With pizza and pasta we got to know Luke a little better, and I mixed my earlier beers with a tasty cabernet sauvignon, always a sensible concoction.

The Suicide of Western Culture

Back on the paths again, we returned to Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar for Luke’s choice of act, The Suicide of Western Culture, hailing from Barcelona. You wouldn’t expect it, but this act had a political video accompanying their music. Fancy that. Post-electro post-rock instrumentalists in black hoodies, nodding above their equipment, they engineered an awesome cinematic wall of sound that we all enjoyed, except Sam who took a seat upstairs.

The Suicide of Western Culture
The Suicide of Western Culture

Husky, Theme Park, We are scientists

For the final leg of the festival we visited Coalition, another under-the-arches seafront venue. We caught Husky again, the setting wasn’t so good this time, but it was nice recognising their songs. Of course, their album still wasn’t out yet.

Country singer-songwriter Jodie Marie came next. Her voice was refreshing but it wasn’t anything spectacular. The rowdy bar and filling venue wasn’t the best setting for a girl and guitarist. (For this reason we also skipped out on Slow Club who would be playing the same venue later).

By now the venue was packed, it was sweaty and humid, like a rainforest filled with apes, or something. The schedule was running behind by 45 minutes or so. Everyone had arrived to watch We Are Scientists, but Theme Park were just getting started. A new, British indie rock band, likened to Talking Heads, they had some trouble with microphones on stage, and they showed a lack of experience. But their songs came through this mess, “Wax” and “Milk” being the standout songs. And when they found their flow they were enjoyable.

Theme Park
Theme Park

The final act of our night were the Coalition headliners, We Are Scientists from New York. A three piece - front man-George Clooney-lookalike, the dry comedian and the drummer. Indie, rock, alt-rock, jump about, shout about, their 45 minute set packed a punch, including their popular festival titled track, “The Great Escape”.

And that was that, we tried to get in to EMA at the Pavilion but the delay meant we couldn’t get in. We said goodbye to Luke who ran for his train and we called it a night, heading home at 1am for a cup of tea and a chat.

The Great Escape wrist band
The Great Escape wrist band

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