The variety of carefully selected and considerately programmed music that we manage to squeeze into one field, two days and seven music venues is central to what makes Farmfest tick. So we’ve categorised the main melody makers below to help you make a little sense of it all. Or, when you join us, you could do as many do and just go with your instincts and follow the flow of your senses…
Tom Jenkinson, or Squarepusher, has been shifting musical frontiers for well over a decade and a half and is, simply, a musical vanguard. Farmfest welcomes his latest project, Shobaleader One, to the main stage for a phenomenal full band portrayal of Squarepusher classics from new album Elektrac (WARP Records).
Delivering choice tunes from albums like Hard Normal Daddy and Music is Rotted One Note, and with a mesmerising light show adding to what promises to be an otherworldly and unrelenting exploration of playfully warped electronic melodies, jazz drums and funk bass lines, this is a frenetic sonic assault to take us all to the peripherals of electronic music. And by the look and sound of things, that’s a pretty good place to be. You’d better get ready for this one!
Music became central to Roots Manuva’s life when he was just a young boy living a tough life in South London. The barrage of bass he heard emanating from sound systems in Stockwell’s stake park compelled and absorbed him. Life giving bass that he said sounded “so good, so rich”.
He was hooked by those sounds and after early years of experimentation with various artists and labels, 1999 saw the release of debut album Brand New Second Hand on Big Dada. Beautifully penned and produced, with a mixture of peaced-out trip-hop alongside snappier beats, hints of jazzy playfulness and big bass sounds, lyrically and vocally the album felt real and candid; a poignant view on modern, urban life.
2001’s single Witness (1 Hope) from follow-up album Run Come Save Me became a huge hit right across the UK’s dance floors and to this day it remains one of the UK’s top rap anthems, that classic, grimy bass line still so distinct – and still so danceable!
Roots Manuva’s discography now stretches to nine studio albums and his last release, 2015’s Bleeds – a dark, brooding album that offers new, deeper soulful melodies alongside his already distinctive rapping style – demonstrates Roots Manuva’s continued artistic evolution and importance.
Vice Magazine described him as ‘one of the most influential artists in British music history’, and that’s a fair reflection of a man that’s always been and remains at the pinnacle of the UK rap scene.
We’re delighted to welcome him to our main stage for what promises to be a truly memorable and powerful headline show.
Hitting the main stage together with full 6-member band is Bristol’s much-loved, adopted son, Oliver Wilde. Described as “a Nick Drake for the 21st century”, Wilde gained huge critical acclaim for 2013’s debut A Brief Introduction To Unnatural Lightyears. 2014’s follow-up Red Tide Opal In The Loose End Womb helped Wilde reach an ever-widening audience and again received high critical praise.
With a distinctive lo-fi sound that melds folk, electronica, pop and indie, Wilde’s compositions, lyrics and hushed vocals have been crafted to an even finer degree on 2017’s beautiful Post-Frenz Container Buzz. An album that’s at times haunting but which is always within touching distance of a lighter pop sweetness. This is sure to be a very special show.
By now a well established Farmfest favourite, Goan Dogs return for their first main stage performance on the farm. The Bristol 5-piece outfit supply skin-tight crafted grooves, carried away on a luscious undertow of shamanic rhythms and six-string beatitude or “shambolic, heartfelt, ludicrous pop” (Bruno Ellingham, producer).
In late 2015, the legendary Rockfield Studios opened its doors to the band and their producer (known for his work with Maccabees, New Order, Tracey Thorn, KT Tunstall, Moby etc). Now they’re armed with a solid body of luxury recordings, poised and ready for the year ahead.
Febueder are an alternative trio from Ascot, England, formed in 2010 by lead vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Kieran Godfrey and percussionist Samuel Keysell, and joined by bassist Toby Ingram in 2015. Their name, which began as a made-up appellation (pronounced like Bermuda) has grown to embody something more since their early days of recording.
It’s the palette from which they present their sincere songwriting and progressive approach to rhythm and melody; one that has earned them praise from the likes of NME, The Line of Best Fit, and CLASH, and DIY. In 2017, Febueder will return with their third EP, a work which marks a return to the band’s foundational elements with a refined perspective on time and experience.
Cradle rocked in the mining towns of The Copperbelt in Central Africa, the Goneos brothers jet set to the UK to share their sonic ramblings.
Releasing the Bromigos EP in 2012 led to touring the UK / Europe and through to The United States. Following up a successful year with their stomping debut album ‘Blue Lips’ created in a lighthouse off the coast of Dorset took the guys to SXSW festival in Texas and back for a storming set on the BBC Introducing Stage at Glastonbury Festival which got the attention of Led Zeppelin’s Robert Plant who invited the brothers to join him at a sold out Manchester Apollo.
Eyre Llew (pronounced “Air-Loo”) are a three-piece ambient rock band from Nottingham, UK. They have been together since August 2014 and released an impressive nine singles in this short time. The trio are currently recording behind the scenes and will be releasing their début album in 2017.
Garnering near-cult status as purveyors of original genre-bending music, Port Erin are a band of three. Two brothers- Reuben Myles Tyghe, vocals and guitar, flanked by Jacob Myles Tyghe on bass and Cerys Brocklehurst on drums.
The past decade has seen them extensively tour the U.K. performing over 600 shows at some of of the U.K.’s most prestigious venues. A milieu of sonic textures are at play with echoes of jazz, coupled with mechanical Krautrock undertones. They are as punk as they are prog and as political as they are personal.
CaStLeS’ music swirls somewhere between Os Mutantes, Ennio Morricone and the misty mountains of Snowdonia, a delightfully hypnotic voodoo groove with reverb soaked melodies.
Brothers Dion and Cynyr Hamer formed the band back in 2008 following many musical project manifestations as a duo, they were later joined by former Derwyddon Dr Gonzo bassist Calvin Thomas. Based in Snowdonia, the band took a brief hiatus in 2011 whilst Cynyr and Dion were touring Europe and America with Welsh rock band We Are Animal. New material was written during this time, and the band released debut EP PartDepart at the tail end of 2015.
In 2016, the band earned their debut performance slot on the BBC Introducing stage at Reading & Leeds Festival, and also found success playing shows as part of the Horizons 12scheme; which included a recording session at the historic Maida Vale Studiosin London.
CaStLeS released their debut album, Fforesteeringin November 2016. By December, The Guardian crowned CaStLeS their ‘New Band of the Week’.
The alter-ego of American songwriter Brian Christinzio combines eloquent songwriting with a self-destructive bent. From dramatic, layered pop to a haunted take on Sixties sunshine-pop, from blue-eyed soul to speedy surf-pop, from sparser piano balladry to psychedelic showstoppers, BC Camplight is a sublime talent, with a fearless approach to lyrical introspection.
He’s already done two sessions for long-term fan Marc Riley at BBC 6 Music, which featured Christinzio’s band of Mancunians who he met at The Castle Hotel pub, a watering hole in the Manchester city centre particularly popular with musicians.
Christinzio also heard John Grant’s album on the jukebox there, which encouraged him to approach Bella Union. Grant’s cocktail of depression and self-sabotage thwarted an outrageous talent, but he took his second chance. The same deserves to happen to Christinzio, a similarly outsize, sharp and funny personality with a non-conformist streak. Far from dying, BC Camplight has been reborn in the North.
Hailing out of Oxford, quartet Low Island have inspired glowing comparisons with the likes of Caribou and Grizzly Bear. In the space of just four tracks, they have earned radio airplays courtesy of Huw Stephens, Lauren Laverne, Tom Robinson, Tom Ravenscroft and Phil Taggart. Their debut EP Just About Somewhere, released early this year, has received over 700,000 plays on Spotify.
Following a debut sold out live show at The Sebright Arms, the band is getting prepped to release their follow up EP and extensive festival season sets, as well as UK headline tour.
Wasuremono are a four piece Indie, Krautrock, Dream-pop band from Bradford-on-Avon, South West England.
Formed in 2013 by lead singer William Southward through his love of producing and recording cinematic soundscapes. The band have recently released their explosive EP/Album Kaboom and been championed by Steve Lamacq and Lauren Laverne on BBC 6 Music. Featured on both Laverne’s and Lamacq’s recommends playlist and chosen as Lamacq’s “Lamacq Livener” (winner stays on) for 2 whole weeks.
Songwriter Kate Stables has been an essential fixture of British folk music for the past 10 years.
This Is The Kit is the much beloved musical project of Kate, born in England and based in Paris, though the heart of their musical community remains in Bristol, UK. Kate sings, plays guitar, banjo, FartHeadet and percussion, while a cast of carefully hand-plucked friends deliver guitar strums, banjo plucks, hushed horns and electronic textures that sit beneath Stables’ easy, earnest lilt.
While on tour, This is the Kit is a shape shifting entity ranging from a female duo with friend Rozi Plain to a psychedelia tinged five electric five-piece.
Beans on Toast AKA Jay McAllister, first emerged in 2005 from Braintree, Essex, and has since released 8 studio albums that offer a candid and personal view on all range of topics, including love, politics, and general disillusionment – but with a witty, fun and lightness of touch that make the stories he shares truly distinct. This promises to be an intimate and at times rousing affair.
Evangelical peddlers of DNA-rearranging post-punk exotica, Melt Yourself Down are an unholy communion of North African influences and shamanic vocals with a wanton disregard for their own safety.
Formed by saxophonist Pete Wareham, they number in their ranks some of the finest musicians of their generation, with members having played with Acoustic Ladyland, Polar Bear, Sons Of Kemet, The Comet Is Coming, Hello Skinny, Zun Zun Egui and Mulatu Astatke.
Their freewheeling live shows became the stuff of legend – the raw Nubian soul percussion of Ali Hassan Kuban mixed with the shiny urban junk trash disco of James Chance. Their second studio album, Last Evenings On Earth, is a dizzying, continent-hopping voyage, darker and heavier than its predecessor.
Dele Sosimi stands out as one of the most active musicians currently on the Afrobeat scene worldwide. Dele‘s career began when he joined Fela‘s Anikulapo-Kuti‘s Egypt 80 (1979–1986) and then subsequently with Fela‘s son Femi Anikulapo-Kuti‘s Positive Force (1986-1994). In both bands he was musical director and keyboard player.
Since Fela created Afrobeat, Dele‘s Afrobeat pedigree is therefore impeccable. The music is a blend of complex but highly danceable funk grooves, Nigerian traditional music (including hi-life) and African percussion underpinning the jazz horns.
Sosimi is abetted by his full Afrobeat orchestra, a group of musicians who all have chops to spare and the communication between them is near telepathic.
A mammoth two-hour set awaits…
This unique collaboration of West African musicians, led by British bass player Edd Bateman, has been commissioned by The Jazz Café, London, and will see the band perform classic tracks from Talking Heads’ albums Remain in the Light and Speaking in Tongues – two timeless works with clear Afrobeat influence. These new renditions will offer a mix of translated African verses with the household choruses being sung (with the crowd, no doubt!) in English. The band’s dates at The Jazz Café sold out immediately and with no other dates planned, the promise of such seminal records being given a completely new and re-energised approach is of obvious appeal. We can’t wait!
Founder of Tectonic records and all-round Bristol Dubstep legend, Pinch, will be spinning his inimitable cuts of Reggae, world music and dub-tinged deep beats and experimentation in The Den once more.
Sherwood & Pinch performed at the farm two years ago and they brewed up a thoroughly potent storm, so although spinning solo this time out, you can expect an equally stunning set that will have you endlessly grooving, lost deep in the sounds and spaces created.
Describing their music as Electro Arabic Dabke – or Shamstep – 47SOUL emerged from Amman, Jordan in 2013, and the 4-piece have been blasting their sounds and relentless dance throughout the Arabic and European underground ever since. Now based in Bilad-a-Sham, their sound, underpinned by classic, driving Arabic rhythm and beats, layers analog synthesisers, hypnotic guitar lines and powerful, soul-fuelled vocals from all four members. With lyrics that mix Arabic and English, they call for celebration and freedom in the struggle for equality that’s evident throughout the world.
The Dub Tent is the High Grade Rockers dub soundsystem, playing the best of roots, reggae and dub. Occupying a corner of Farmfest for more years than we can remember High Grade Rockers are both a very firm, yet slightly wobbly favourite!
Duncan Beiny aka DJ Yoda is no ordinary scratch DJ. His seminal How To Cut & Paste series showcases a tongue-in-cheek mixing style that prompted Q Magazine to declare him “one of the ten DJs to see before you die”, while Hip Hop Connection voted him “one of the top three DJs in the world”. The past decade has seen Yoda evolve from hip-hop beginnings, using his world renowned turntable skills and a truckload of influences as diverse as funk, trap, pop, reggae, drum ‘n’ bass, and even big band swing and country & western, to make unashamed party music.
At Farmfest 2017 he will be dropping a special Hip-hop classics mix, to get the party started riiiiiiiigggghhhhhhtttt.
Hip Hop broke into Parisian maestro Guts’ life sometime in the 1980’s, and he’s devoted all his time and energy to it since. In search of the perfect beat and melody he looked to the sounds emanating from the Bronx, New York as his main source of influence. But over the years, his sound, while still rooted in hip hop, continued to shift and expand, with fields of influence including the riches offered in soul, jazz, funk and disco, as well as experimentations of live instrumentation blended with programmed grooves. This constant venturing, passion and devotion, and of course the smooth feel-good vibes he dishes up, have helped make him the distinct treasure he is today.
We’re delighted to welcome Guts to the farm for a rare and what should be sweet-as UK DJ set.
Dizraeli is a Bristol-born rapper, poet and musician. Although rooted strongly in hip-hop traditions, his work draws inspiration from old folk music, recognising the common ground shared by songs of the people from any point in history. Touching, funny stories of riots, atheism and Englishness though folk, rap, spoken word and hymns, Dizraeli embodies 21st Century folk.
The Independent Dizraeli has won both the Farrago UK Slam Championships and the BBC Radio 4 Poetry Slam, and written several hip-hop plays including the award winning ‘Rebel Cell’, with Baba Brinkman.
“Folk or hip-hop? I don’t know, but Dizraeli makes me realise how wonderful it is to hear real English – fluent, witty and arresting”
Born in Wolverhampton, UK, Actress, aka Darren J. Cunningham, has in the last 5 years of running the Werkdiscs label set himself apart as one of the hottest A&R scouts within his field, having discovered and released some of the most widely talked about artists of the emerging bass generation, namely Disrupt, Zomby, Lukid and Starkey.
As Actress he produced the exceptional “Hazyville LP” drawing cries for a Mercury Award Nomination. He’s remixed Various Production, written for the seminal techno imprint Soma Records and has released ‘Splazsh’ and more recently the ‘R.I.P’ album on Honest Jons, the British independent record label created and founded by Damon Albarn, of whose DRC Music Collective Actress he played a part.
Actress has starred in a unique cinematic portrait filmed by Pierre Debusschere as well as performing stunning live shows at Sonar Tokyo and Barcelona, Berghain, the Turbine Hall in the Tate Modern (collaborating with visual artists Yayoi Kusama and Agnes Martin), Fabric London and DJ’d alongside the likes of Atoms For Peace, Juan Atkins, UR, Modeselektor, Radioactive Man, Dabrye, Kode 9 and Flying Lotus. DJ sets are variable depending on the night and mood, but generally programmed to suit afro-futuristic sounds of all persuasions.
It’s easy to hear Max Graef’s music as a collection of influences. Whether it’s Berlin, his hometown, or the array of instruments he’s mastered through a love of playing, or the house music, the funk, disco, jazz and hip-hop: as a producer, DJ and bandleader, he clearly embodies it all. Yet no matter how much you understand these influences, Max’s music still catches you off guard. What he uses as source is freely available but the maturity and inventiveness that strings it all together couldn’t come from anyone else.
First album, Rivers of the Red Planet, was released to immediate critical acclaim through Tartelet in 2014 and it built on the infectious and out-of-time feel of his early singles. After spinning his distinct collection of records at clubs and festivals across Europe, Max then established a five-piece live band, bringing his music even closer to the loose, organic feel of the records he so cherishes.
He’ll be bringing that collection of records with him to the farm, and we can’t wait to hear what he’s got to serve up.
Armed with a laptop and guitar and flanked by two friends on guitar and bass, Luo aka experimental producer Josh Trinnaman, embarks on a skipping, melodic foray into live electronica that has its roots in post rock and shoegaze.
The most obvious point of reference would be a more relaxed, introverted 65 Days of Static but such bands as Sigur Ros, Explosions in the Sky and occasional pangs of the Cancer Conspiracy were audible throughout a strong set.
As part of the Shapes Takeover, Rhythm Sister, a female-only DJ collective, will deliver a takeover of its own. Featuring Amii Little, Daisy Moon, Em Williams, Gabi, Jess Farley, Jackin Patz and Liv Ayers, Rhythm Sister deliver DJ workshops as well as a cracking night. They’ll be let loose across a 4-hour session of playfully mixed party sounds.
Hailing from the United Kingdom, Equals is a duo made of singer Ade Omotayo and producer James Low. In a region that’s birthed modern R ‘n’ B/electronic acts like James Blake, Jack Garratt, Disclosure, Sampha, SBTRKT and many more, Equals seem to combine the best attributes of the aforementioned to create powerful, cinematic songs that range from subtle and beautiful to pulsing and booming.
With a visceral enthusiasm behind the decks that goes hand-in-hand with their blend of high-octane house and funk, German duo Hauke Freer and Matthias Reiling, ramp that energy and commitment up to another level altogether when performing live – their wild abandon and head-banging prowess approaching legendary status.
Ahead of their third LP on Delusions of Grandeur, these guys are guaranteed to spread their enthusiasm through the farm, leaving a trail of magic dance floor moments and smiling faces in their wake.
One minute he’s rocking the roof off at Fabric with his tough and funky big-room underground house; the next he’s charming the pants off a more intimate crowd with everything from dubby disco, funk and hip-hop to trip hop and Latin batucadas. Armed with a sensitivity and sense of occasion that few DJs possess Bill Brewster knows how to work a crowd in the best possible sense.
His parallel life is as a writer and with his long-term partner-in-crime Frank Broughton they have written three books together, including the acclaimed Last Night A DJ Saved My Life and How To DH (Properly). Now heading up the awesome djhistory.com
Or:la’s growing success as a dynamic producer and genre spanning selector has seen her gain respect from some of the most revered figures in the industry. A keen record collector with a vast knowledge of various styles and genres is what separates her from many other young DJ’s at the moment; aptly summed up by Thump as “One of the most underrated DJs on the UK circuit at the moment, and one of those selectors blessed with the ability to really tell a story.”
Aside from DJ’ing and impressive production skills, Or:la is recognised for forming the forward thinking and highly successful ‘Meine Nacht’ club night, which was recently crowned by Mixmag as one of the top three events worldwide.
With a debut EP out on Hotflush, plus the launching of her own label ‘Deep Sea Frequency’, it’s clear that 2017 is only the start of things to come for Or:la.
Greg began DJing in 1975 and is regarded as one of the most important figures on the UK dance scene. He enjoyed hugely popular residencies in the early eighties at Wigan Pier and Manchester’s majorly influential Legend, having originally started out in his hometown of New Brighton. He was a pioneer of mixing in the UK and in 1983 he became the first ‘dance music’ specialist hired for a regular weekly session at Manchester’s now legendary Haçienda club. Greg was instrumental in breaking the new electronic, post-disco records coming out of New York, a sound he has dubbed ‘Electro-Funk’.
In 2003 he set up his own website, electrofunkroots, to document this crucial era in the evolution of dance culture and, having retired from DJ work at the end of 1983, Greg returned to spinning tunes two decades later, receiving plaudits for his red-hot appearances at renowned nights including Electric Chair, Horse Meat Disco, Fabric, Back To Basics, Ministry Of Sound, Asylum, Melting Pot and the Sub Club. Before long he was picking up an ever increasing amount of bookings throughout Europe and, subsequently, worldwide.
Farmfest is delighted to welcome George Evelyn, or Nightmares on Wax as he’s far better known, back to the farm for a second headline stint behind the decks. His previous set, in 2015, was a highlight of the weekend, and his soulful grooves, dubbed out beats and electronic infusions are guaranteed to bring a winning formula back to Bruton once again.
Having first released debut album A Word of Science: The First and Final Chapter through WARP records in 1991, Nightmares on Wax is still going strong in the studio and rumours abound of yet more new material, following closely behind 2016’s Ground Floor EP. His collection of rich and rare records, alongside the ability to judge his set and crowd as well as any DJ, are sure to have just as positive an impact on the farm’s crowd this time out.
The world famous New Orleans Jazz sound, in a light you’ve never seen before! Combining the powers of funk, jazz, hip-hop and soul, Broken Brass Ensemble act as urban brass ambassadors, pioneering on their euphoric groove. The band has an innate ability to orchestrate a nostalgic New York hot jazz sound, incorporating weird, wonderful and peculiar melodies, in fabulous superhero fashion.
With origins based in the Netherlands, Broken Brass Ensemble have been firing up a storm all over Europe with an energizing and eclectic aesthetic, pairing punchy basses with hard-hitting brass.
The enigmatic eight-piece have conquered most of Europe and with more than 350+ shows under their belt, and no signs of stopping, Broken Brass Ensemble has become a live force to be reckoned with.
Elder Island are not a genre specific band. The trio formed as art graduates in Bristol and the music they write reflects this varied creative background. The band’s debut EP was released in 2014 on Four Thieves Records and grew steadily in popularity, spurred forward with radio plays from the likes of Giles Peterson and BBC Introducing West.
By adopting an individual approach to the styling of gigs, the mood and pace of Elder Island’s performances are often tailored to venues and their respective crowds.
Ishmael started releasing jazzy house cuts on Wolf Music before stepping out of the box with the release of his debut album “Sometime In Space” in 2016. The record is an exploration of dusty soundscapes & off-kilter house which Ishmael then developed into a Live A/V show with visual artist Amie Nowlan, watch their Boiler Room performance here
2017 sees the multi-instrumentalist embark on his most ambitious venture yet with the launch of the Ishmael Ensemble. Their debut Lp “Songs For Knotty” on Banoffee Pies Records takes the listener on an emotional journey through jazz & ambient music. With support from from the likes of Gilles Peterson, Alexander Nut & Tom Ravenscroft, the 6-piece band have a busy year ahead. Listen in full here https://banoffeepiesrecords.bandcamp.com/album/songs-for-knotty
As a dj, Ishmael has never conformed to one particular genre, his extensive sets span house, disco, afro & world music, guaranteed to play the unexpected…
Scott Hendy, also known as Boca 45, is a DJ and producer from Bristol, UK. Since 2004 he has been signed to the independent record label, Grand Central Records. Prior to this, he released material on Hombré Recordings, Illicit Records, Superslick Stereo Sounds and High Noon Records.
The name is derived from the Argentine football team Boca Juniors, and a common name for a 7″ single (so called because of the speed, in revolutions per minute, that a record of this size plays at).
After releasing his debut album, Pitch Sounds, Boca 45 recorded two DJ mix albums that were released on Ninja Tune. Both albums contain 45 tracks and all tracks were taken from 7″ singles.
Boca 45 has also recorded with DJ Andy Smith of Portishead under the title Dynamo Productions. They released one album entitled Analogue. He has also worked with vocalist Gee as Malakai and later Malachai.
Cousin Kula’s unique Psychpop sound has built a fervent fanbase in their hometown of Bristol through their energetic live performances. In the past year the band have landed high profile support slots with Dutch Uncles and The Kooks, as well as touring throughout the UK and Europe.
Cousin Kula released their second single “Ode to Lyle” in December 2016, produced by Jim Barr (of Portishead and Get The Blessing) at J&J Studios, with further single releases and an EP coming in 2017.
Combining live instruments with a backbone of electronic wandering, Brighton based four-piece Calico bring elements of jazz, electronica, folk, rock and classical, all filtered through the brain of an insane robotic overlord, to their unique and invigorating soundscapes.
The band took a brief hiatus in 2014 whilst undergoing line-up changes. The subsequent introduction of the brass instrument, courtesy of the FartHeadet powers Lewis Husbands, completed Calico’s sound.
Raw, dynamic performances and beautifully honest songwriting. That’s what it’s all about with Jalapeno Records newest signing, blues songstress – Izo FitzRoy. Izo’s music is influenced by the power of female blues legends like Janis Joplin, Susan Tedeschi and Beth Hart infused with her own gospel roots from years spent singing in, leading and directing touring choirs.
With a rare combination of powerful vocals, honest song-writing and dynamic live performances, Izo’s music is a unique and captivating blend of soul, gospel and blues.