Essential 10: Festival Bands 2018

This article originally appeared in Songlines #138 (June 2018) p98. Download a pdf here.

Festival season is upon us! Alexandra Petropoulos and Jo Frost have picked ten artists – and their albums – who will be rocking stages across the country this summer. Here are Alexandra’s picks

Elephant Sessions
All We Have is Now
(Elephant Records, 2017)
The Scottish quintet perform a mix of traditional roots, electronic, rock and funk in what they call ‘Highland neo-trad.’ Catch their barnstorming live performance at various festivals including Doune the Rabbit Hole, Larmer Tree Festival and Cambridge Folk Festival. Reviewed in #129.

Orange Whip
(Wah Wah 45s, 2018)
There is nothing but sass and good fun to be had with this Manchester folk-hop group. While they can reliably be seen tearing it up on several stages at Shambala Festival every year, they’ve just released this album in March so they will be at loads of other festivals including Underneath the Stars and Cambridge Folk Festival. Be prepared to fall in love with them as soon as the groove starts.

Ibibio Sound Machine
(Merge Records, 2017)
Fronted by British-Nigerian vocalist Eno Williams, this group bring swagger and futurism to their mix of Afrobeat and highlife. This is boogie music, so be ready to throw some shapes at Larmer Tree Festival, Greenbelt Festival, or Standon Calling. A Top of the World in #127.

Between the Earth and the Sky
(Rough Trade Records, 2017)
After a name change, the self-labelled Dublin folk miscreants (formerly Lynched) have been taking the folk world by storm. They took home the awards for Best Group and Best Original Track at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards in April. But their live shows are both funny and intense, so don’t miss them at Brighton Festival and Larmer Tree Festival. A Top of the World in #133.


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