Peer Reviews: A look at ArcTanGent 2015 from those that know best

ArcTanGent Festival Line-up 2015

ArcTanGent Festival Line-up 2015

ArcTanGent has certainly come around fast this year! The past few weeks have seen me without much internet due to a house move, so preparation for the best long weekend of the year has been sadly minimal. But that’s ok, because you don’t need me to tell you how good this year’s line-up is.

Now in its third year, the festival for fans of daft time signatures and everything “post” and “math” is looking at its strongest line-up yet. The announcement that Young Legionnaire had been added to the line-up had me grinning for days. They are acting as the cherry on top of a host of great bands, including Birthday Cake For Breakfast super favourites like Alpha Male Tea Party, Mylets, Mutiny On The Bounty, Trojan Horse, Axes, Delta Sleep and Vasa. It’s also great to see Manchester duo Cleft and the wonderful Maybeshewill making their return, the only bands I can think of to have the honour of playing every ATG (feel free to correct me on this…)
I am however GUTTED that Brontide have pulled out. I can not be consoled!

With mere days to go, I reached out to a few select bands playing this year’s festival to find out which of their peers they think are unmissable at ArcTanGent. Whilst you check out their picks, you can stick on this lovingly prepared playlist, featuring the bands listed below as well as loads more!

Brighton based trio Polymath

Brighton based trio Poly-Math

“We’re really looking forward to this year. We’ve all got a few favourites playing, so it should be pretty non-stop awesome! We’re all way more into the heavy stuff rather than the post stuff, so this year is ticking all the boxes for us.

Really chuffed to be seeing Deerhoof, they’re going to be a real festival highlight for us. Tim has been following them for a long time and they’ve had a lot of impact on his approach to guitar, so seeing them will be great.

Rolo Tomassi’s new album ‘Grievances’ is brilliant, so we’ll be really looking forward to seeing them again this year. They stole ATG for us in the first year.

Axes are always such a consistent live band, can’t wait to see them again. Vasa, despite being some of the most vile phlegm husks of human beings make great music; they’ll be ones to watch. Of course Cleft – we’ll all be expecting some major upping from last year’s incredible set! Alpha Male Tea Party, again obviously; Tom Peters is probably the best guitarist at the festival this year, so he’ll be great to watch.

There are so many – too many for this limited word count – but those are our top few. As usual we’ll expect a few surprise amazing performances. Every year we seem to go away with a new favourite band.

Sheffield's own BODY HOUND (Photo Credit: Joe Singh)

Sheffield’s own BODY HOUND (Photo Credit: Joe Singh)

Eyup – Body Hound here.
We think you should all go and watch Cleft and Alpha Male Tea Party at ArcTanGent this year. They’re both ridiculously fun bands and they’ll be sure to ram riff after marvellous riff down your ears’ throats.

Greg Chapman, on behalf of Alpha Male Tea Party (Photo Credit: Michelle Roberts)

Greg Chapman, on behalf of Alpha Male Tea Party (Photo Credit: Michelle Roberts)

“Band(s) I’m most looking forward to seeing? Absolutely fucking everyone. I don’t think there is one band I’d turn away for some lovely handmade pizza (no there is, but I won’t name who!) But if I had to choose my top 5 ‘must sees’ it would have to be:
1. Dillinger Escape Plan 2. Body Hound  3. Vennart  4. Cleft  5. AK/DK.
But everyone is a must see, to be frank. Sounds ridiculous that there are no duds in the pack.

Thing that I’m most looking forward to at ATG? All the food and amazing ale followed by the silent disco where I will sick it all up over myself like a giant headphoned-pizzery-geyser. I think Axes are doing a wee slot for it (I hope that’s not a secret) so Ben and myself will go and hassle Paul to play some Billy Joel, and of course only we will like it.

Greg’s hot ATG tip?
Bring yer thermals and yer shin pads.”

Nicolas Przeor, on behalf of Mutiny On The Bounty

Nicolas Przeor, on behalf of Mutiny On The Bounty

There are so many good bands playing at the festival, but we’re especially eager to see Lite. They’re one of our favourite bands and they completely smashed everyone’s face last year. Deerhoof is also a band we’ve never seen and are looking forward to seeing.

It will be great to see what The Fall Of Troy looks like in 2015. Chon seems to be a pretty good pick at this year’s edition. Finally, it will be a good occasion to see our friends in Cleft, Delta Sleep, Valerian Swing and Alpha Male Tea Party

John Helps, on behalf of Maybeshewill

John Helps, on behalf of Maybeshewill

“We always run in to multiple bands we’ve toured with at ArcTanGent, and this year is no exception – Lite, 65days, Dillinger, Flood of Red – It goes without saying that we can’t wait to see all of those guys again.

Although we’ve never toured together, our brothers and sister in Her Name Is Calla are playing, and we’re glad to be sharing a festival with them. On top of that there are so many other awesome people – Fall of Troy, Talons, Young Legionnaire, Tangled Hair, Delta Sleep, Axes, Mutiny on the Bounty… It’s just a pretty unbelievable weekend really.

Gareth Thomas, on behalf of USA Nails

Gareth Thomas, on behalf of USA Nails

“We were surprised to be asked to play ArcTanGent this year as we didn’t really think that we’d sit that well alongside their usual fare. Initially, we had fears that our set might go down like a shit sandwich. However, our confidence was buoyed with the inclusion of That Fucking Tank who, like us, paint in loud, broad strokes. Tank are godfathers to many of the bands active in UK DIY at the moment and pre-empted a lot of trends that now dominate the underground scene, but still continue to innovate while others just regurgitate. They’ve been around for ever and have done it all – Alexandra Palace, living rooms, woodsheds in former soviet republics (probably), and everywhere in between. Always a pleasure to see these lads drop the clutch.

Deerhoof – Not much to say that hasn’t already been said about these. Capital Classics. Always worth a look in. I’m sure you don’t need us to tell you that.

Gum Takes Tooth – Probably your sound engineers worst nightmare. Fucked electricals and tubs, and a whole bunch of other stuff too that we’re probably too simple to understand. Their noise is chaotic and angular, but at the same time, structured and coherent. As we are a bunch of morons, we cannot begin to comprehend how they conceive such strange and beautiful music. They probably think we are terrible.

Blanck Mass – Plenty of time for Sacred Bones. Plenty of time for Fuck Buttons. Course it’s worth a blaze. Rude not to. Hope your man here is on last for max merriment.”

Esteban J. Giron, on behalf of Toundra

Esteban J. Giron, on behalf of Toundra

pg.lost – We’ve been touring with this band along Russia during the last part of our previous album tour and we enjoyed their live show. Pretty interesting, nice people and really good musicians. After all these years I’ve never listened to their new music so I’m waiting for them!

Deafheaven  I really really like how these guys make those melancholic and energetic songs but I’ve never seen them live so I’m really interested in seeing how they play that music. It’s something I would like to explore on our next album.

The Award winning ArcTanGent runs from August 20th to the 22nd, and takes place in beautiful Bristol.
Make sure to keep an eye on Birthday Cake For Breakfast following the festival for interviews, reviews and other fun things you can gawk at. See you in the pit!

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