Frank Turner is the perfect way to end the night at Kendal Calling

Kendal Calling 2009 review

By Tommy Jackson | Published: Tue 11th Aug 2009

Kendal Calling 2009 - Frank Turner
Photo credit: Tommy Jackson

Kendal Calling 2009

Friday 31st July to Sunday 2nd August 2009
Lowther Estate, Kendal, East Cumbria, England MAP
£70 - SOLD OUT

Heavy and persistent overnight rain left many fearing the worst, but by the time Black Diamond Bay arrived on the main stage, the sun had come out and the mud was starting to dry out a little. Branding themselves as electro-folk, one could be forgiven for hating them immediately, but allow them this indiscretion and give them a chance - they're not bad. 'Peace' and 'Baby Doll Loose' are both reminiscent of Lamb's better work, and they manage to draw a respectable early morning crowd with their mellow, chill-out inducing sounds.

Televised Crimewave couldn't contrast more with Black Diamond Bay if they tried, and their We Are Calling Stage set was an incendiary half hour of pure rock n roll bliss which saw frontman Daniel Wilson split his time equally between stage and crowd, much to the delight of the fans. The Libertines-esque 'Listen and Repeat' was the highlight of the too short set, and fans of Doherty and company would do well to check this lot out.

Red Light Company
Less than a year ago Red Light Company were being touted alongside White Lies as the great new hopes to watch. Somehow they got lost along the way, and on today's showing, the lesser band won out. Red Light Company's stunning Main Stage set featured the likes of 'Arts and Crafts' and a glorious take on 'Scheme Eugene', played out to a small yet dedicated crowd. Sometimes music just isn't fair.

Manchester four-piece The Answering Machine can always be relied upon to put on a great show, and today was no different. 'Oklahoma' and the nihilistic brilliance of 'Cliffer' are some of the best guitar pop songs your correspondent has heard this year, and in Martin Colclough they have a frontman with the potential to become one of the greats. It's no surprise that the tent filled rapidly for their mid-afternoon set, and this lot are definitely ones to watch.

Detroit Social Club
Newcastle psych-rock hopefuls Detroit Social Club received a rapturous reception in a packed We Are Calling tent, and frontman David Burn seemed to feed on the energy from the crowd as he led the band through the highlights of their upcoming debut album. 'Rivers and Rainbows' and 'Sunshine People', the band's two singles to date, both received a rousing singalong treatment much to the obvious delight of Burn.

DSC have recently been out on support duties for Twisted Wheel, the next band on the Main Stage, and one can only assume that the headliners on that tour were upstaged somewhat. A frankly awful band with absolutely nothing to recommend them, Twisted Wheel are like The Enemy without the songs, and when the only songs The Enemy have are Paul Weller's, that's not saying much.

Frank Turner
While The Zutons no doubt played a sets of crowd pleasing pop hits on the Main Stage, Million Dead frontman turned folk-punk troubadour Frank Turner spent an hour worrying security on the Kaylied Stage. Having grossly underestimated his popularity by placing him here, the festival organisers spent his entire set wondering how to ensure the safety of the packed tent.

Turner's earnest lyrical style and Billy Bragg-esque protest songs have slowly but surely gained him a small army of followers, and tonight they were treated to a crowd-pleasing set which included 'Love, Ire and Song' and the always rousing 'Ballad of Me and My Friends'. It was the perfect way to end the night, and this reviewer's undoubted highlight of the festival.
review by: Tommy Jackson

photos by: Tommy Jackson

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