Festival crowds go wild for local musical talent
Published at 09:10, Monday, 16 July 2012
THE headliners may have played to sell-out venues across the world, but it was a lesser known band made in Tynedale which stole the show at Corbridge Festival.
While pre-festival talk surrounded the appearance of Simon and Oscar from 90s Britpop giants Ocean Colour Scene, it was seven piece Pikey Beatz, from Haydon Bridge, who were the hot topic after their electrifying set at Tynedale Park on Saturday.
A ball of energy, their 45 minute appearance on the main stage had the crowd rocking to their fun filled, reggae infused, ska punk.
Like a North-Eastern Larrikin Love, their quirky, unpredictable music forced revellers at the festival to pogo as if their lives depended on it.
Despite being allocated a 4pm tea-time slot, the band’s enthusiasm rubbed off on the audience, and the entertaining collection of friends must surely be considered for a place higher up on the billing at next year’s event.
Yet Pikey Beatz were not the only act on the line-up from the district who will be waking up to many new fans after impressing at the successful festival, which was blessed with sunshine after a week of tumultuous weather.
Long established rock band, The Quireboys, whose lead singer Spike Gray has many ties with Tynedale, also entertained, while the largest applause of the day belonged to Stamfordham’s Libby Hancock following her emotional set in memory of her close friend Emma Newton, who died when a tree was blown on to her car last year.
It is quite clear that Spike still feels very much part of the Tynedale community despite regularly touring the country, and his husky, rocker’s voice was a hit with the Corbridge faithful.
The popular band had toned it down to produce a stunning acoustic set for the weekend, with Spike undoubtedly the star of the show with his unique tones.
The frontman had a hard act to follow as the Quireboys were on stage after Libby Hancock, who again showed why she is so highly regarded in local circles.
With just her keyboard for company, the 19-year-old stopped everyone in their tracks as she belted out her self-penned tracks.
It was a three-track set filled with emotion with Emma in mind, and those in attendance – even those travelling in from outside the area – could not help but be touched by her stunning display.
While the local acts on the top class line-up shone brightest, that is not to say that the others failed to deliver.
In fact, it is testament to the organisers of the festival, particularly director Cheryl Durkin who put the schedule together, that a high quality array of local talent was intermingled so competently with talent from across the country.
As expected, headline act Simon and Oscar were brilliant and their acoustic set of Ocean Colour Scene classics had their fans singing along to every note.
Hearing the songs which made the band household names across the globe stripped down was something special for long time followers, and all were beautifully done, none more so then the powerful Profit in Peace.
Their appearance on the main stage was a major coup for the relatively new festival in just its second year, and music lovers were rewarded for sticking around despite the acts falling somewhat behind schedule.
Also impressing on the main stage was hip hop act Dancing Lotus, from London, while singer Rae Morris blew people away with a breathtaking performance.
Add well supported Smoove and Turell, The Longsands, Claypath, the Lauren Housley Band and Livewire to the mix and there was something for everyone on the main stage.
But there was plenty happening elsewhere too, with many choosing to head to the second stage where it was a whole new ball game.
It was all acoustic sets in the tent, and the crowds who gathered to take in the musical talent were not disappointed.
Headlining the second stage was Jamie Squire and the singer songwriter went down a storm to bring the indoor action to a remarkable close.
Jamie followed performances by Paul Liddell, Amy Holford and The Soviets which left people with the tricky decision of whether to pop to the main or second stage.
Alongside the music, a funfair, African drumming workshop and numerous stalls kept the audience of all ages entertained throughout the day.
And the brave groups who chose to camp were rewarded with a dry and largely sunny Saturday, adding to the euphoric festival atmosphere.
Following the overwhelming positive feedback from the weekend’s action, the Corbridge Festival will be going all out to continue the trend of growing the local event.
Attracting star names, particularly Simon and Oscar, will give them a platform to build on and people should expect big things for 2013.
Published by http://www.hexhamcourant.co.uk