*UPDATE – Now featuring a spotify playlist of the very top bands playing this year’s festival!*
Now in its ninth outing, 2000trees is really looking to make 2015 a big year. Announcements over the past few months have left fans salivating, with each new band seeing the line-up going from strength to strength. In huge news, organisers have bagged Alkaline Trio and Mclusky as the headliners for Saturday night, as well as the likes of Idlewild, Young Guns, Deaf Havana and The Subways toward the top of the bill.
2000trees was created in 2007 by a group of frustrated friends, disenchanted with the corporate nature of large mainstream festivals and the bands being put on. Overpriced food and drink and extortionate ticket prices were enough to entice this rowdy bunch to take matters into their own hands, and that’s just what they did. Since then, the annual festival has played hosts to such names as Bombay Bicycle Club, Band Of Skulls, Frank Turner and Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip, and has gone on to win multiple awards, including the ‘Grass Roots Festival Award’ at the 2010 UK Festival Awards.
Last year was my first taste of 2000trees, and what an elixir it was – A rad long weekend in Cheltenham with some lovely people, smashing grub and a whole host of tip-top musical performances. From chaotic sets provided by Trash Talk and Baby Godzilla (the latter of which wheeled a giant bin into the pit!) to raw energy from the likes of God Damn, &U&I and Slaves. There was also beautiful math twiddles from big faves Maybeshewill, Tall Ships and Delta Sleep across the weekend, and I also managed to fit in interviews with the chaps from Baby Godzilla and the loveliest man in music, Snaevar of Dad Rocks! Add to that the ever brilliant silent disco, and brother – you’ve got yourself a party!
This year they’re looking to turn it up a notch, and the list of great bands is staggering. So with that in mind, I’ve put together a preview below of who you can expect at this year’s 2000trees and which bands in particular get the Birthday Cake For Breakfast stamp of approval!
One of the main highlights from last year’s 2000trees was the set from Birmingham trio &U&I, particularly their incredible rendition of Seal’s ‘Kiss From A Rose.’ This year sees &U&I return to The Cave stage on the Thursday, for all those lucky enough to have early entry tickets. With a new EP out this spring (revealed in this exclusive interview from last November), you can expect to hear some new stuff, and if recent single ‘The Stamp is anything to go by, we’re in for a real treat! As well as rad cuts from ‘Light Bearer’ and ‘Kill The Man That Shot That Man’, knowing these lads, it’s highly likely there will be a surprise chucked in too – something by Whigfield? Maybe…
Thursday will also see performances from The Computers, Arcane Roots, The Subways and Turbowolf, the latter of which have been on an incredible roll the past couple of months. Their new album ‘Two Hands’ is an absolute riot, and they’ve been up and down the UK and beyond all year plugging the shit out of it, even teaming up with the mighty Death From Above 1979 on their UK/European tour. I am super stoked to catch them on the Thursday, and can see the tent going pretty mental.
As If that’s not good enough, The Forest Sessions Area on Thursday is also stacked, and with it only being 100 metres from The Cave (and with Thursday having no clashes) it means early entry ticket holders get a shit load of bands for their money! On Thursday, The Forest Sessions Area will see performances from the likes of Thrill Collins and The Cadbury Sisters, as well as special acoustic sets from The Subways, The Xcerts and Arcane Roots!
Speaking of &U&I, another band that I’m stupidly excited about seeing this year is To The Wall – A Brummy super group consisting of ex-Blakfish/ex-Shapes members, who are reportedly LOUD AS FUCK! Leading up to their appearance at 2000trees, they’ve played a number of shows up and down the country with the likes of Youth Man and JOHN, but I’ve still not had chance to catch them live. I can’t think of a better time than this summer, pissed up in a field with thousands of other people, so you’ll definitely catch me at the front when they play on the Friday.
With LOUD AS FUCK in mind, Friday will also see Pulled Apart By Horses in the house, as they bring along their new drummer to get stuck into festival season. I sadly missed out on the early days of PABH, but in the past year or so they’ve fast become one of my favourite bands. Known for their hectic live shows, Cheltenham is set to become one giant pit when the lads from Leeds take over – Super stoked!
Continuing on the theme of LOUD AS FUCK, but taking many angular math-rock turns along the way, Friday will also see the 2000trees debut of the kings of turbo-prog, Cleft. The duo based out of Manchester have become poster boys for sister festival ArcTanGent, so it’s no surprise to see them making the jump to 2000trees. Expect riffs aplenty as John and Dan tear the masses a new arsehole. I predict big things to come from this one!
Completing the Friday line-up, the top of the bill will see performances from Deaf Havana, Young Guns, Idlewild and Future Of The Left, whilst throughout the day you’ll be able to see the likes of Errors, The Lion And The Wolf, Honeyblood, We Were Promised Jetpacks, Allusondrugs, Tellison, Nai Harvest, Creeper, Emperor Yes, WOAHNOWS and many more!
Saturday will see lots of folk with heavy heads and many people wishing they were dead…The next day at a festival is always a struggle, and it’s likely that the van that sells bacon rolls and coffee will do record numbers this year. As will the folk who supply the toilets…
But in terms of bands, Saturday is just as stacked as the two days previous. Grungy cool kids Milk Teeth are one such band that are making the Saturday look very appealing. The four-piece from Stroud have a rad throwback 90’s alt-sound, dripping with attitude and a heavy dollop of sludge. With a main support slot this year with that geezer from My Chemical Romance and the re-release of their ‘Sad Sack’ EP, this year has seen Milk Teeth go from strength to strength. Their addition to 2000trees makes it look like it’s going to be a very good summer indeed.
Another four-piece set to make a big impact at this year’s festival is Northern Irish four-piece And So I Watch You From Afar. Their highly anticipated fourth album ‘Heirs’ comes out this May, and early impressions are incredible. The hype surrounding ASIWYFA right now is super high and is likely to reach fever pitch this summer. Their set at the 2014 ArcTanGent was insane, so I’m expecting even bigger things when they play 2000trees this year.
Following on from the release of their brilliant third album ‘There Is Only You’ at the tail end of last year, The Xcerts have been on one hell of a roll in 2015 and will be looking to bring the house down at 2000trees. I can’t wait to see these guys, having rinsed that album all through winter. Proper festival favourites, they might just steal the show this year.
Another definite highlight will come in the form of the multi-multi-multi instrumental Human Pyramids, a group whose numbers seem to grow every time I see them live. Fronted by Paul Russell of Axes (and also featuring the other three members), Human Pyramids is a collection of handpicked musicians from across the UK who play uplifting, beautiful stuff wowing crowds wherever they go!. Neo-classical arrangements rubbing shoulders with post-punk and a host of genres, and it works tremendously.
Saturday evening will also see performances from Alkaline Trio, The Skints, Mclusky and The Twilight Sad, with the rest of the day being jam packed with the likes of Vennart, Defeater, Black Peaks, Great Cynics, Samoans, When We Were Wolves, These Ghosts and more.
If you’ve not grabbed a ticket yet, you really ought too – Organisers are predicting a sell out this year! Click here for tickets and further information.
As with any festival, there are still loads of names that I’m not familiar with (a lot of these near the top of the bill, ashamedly), so I’m eager to discover some new bands – after all, 2000trees is billed as ‘the best place to discover your new favourite band’
So is there anyone missing from this post that should be up here? Who should I be looking out for? Who are you looking forward to catching this year? Get in touch and let us know!
Check out the 2000trees category which will feature even more posts leading up to this year’s event, already including interviews with the likes of &U&I, And So I Watch You From Afar, Turbowolf, Pulled Apart By Horses and more! You can also check out a Spotify playlist below, featuring all manner of top bands appearing this year!