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2018 - Your Thoughts

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OK. So. 

Tenth year for me. Always worried about commercial encroachment, spoiling what the young people call ‘the vibe’. And my fears were completely unrealised. It is just as special a festival as ever. No branding, no (well, very few, fewer than 2016 I thought) dickheads. 

The sound was, if anything, better than ever. Garden Stage has always been great but this year - wow. Clear as a bell. Tipi was MUCH better than previously. 

New tipi: huge improvement. The sound, the space, the shape, the lack of not being able to get in to see what I wanted to see: all good.

Standouts? Vampire Weekend were soooo much better than I expected. Not a classic/obvious EotR act, but as a headliner - brilliant. Idles lived up to the hype, Shame (for me) didn’t. Caroline Spence, Erin Rae, Hiss Golden Messenger, Hayley Heynderickx, Anna Burch, White Denim - such a range of great stuff. Roll on 2019! 

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6th year and loved it.

The good:

Idles - best performance I saw all weekend, really took me away

Shame - I love the album and was impressed with the show

Snapped Ankles - knew nothing about them and was blown away by them

Penelope Isles - they were recommended to me and I now know why. superb

Colter Wall - a beautiful rich voice for a Saturday lunch time

AK/DK - double drums, whats not to like

Hookworms - not quite as good as I'd hoped but very enjoyable all the same

Haley Heynderickx - a beautiful voice with a personality to match .would like to see her again with her band.

 

The Weather, space in the camper van field, hot, powerful showers, clean loos and a very lower w*nker count this year.

It  seemed a tiny bit less busy too.

 

The bad:

erm nothing really. Maybe not so many repeat bands. I think St Vincent has been here 3 out of the last 6. 

Kiran Leonard, not my thing at all.

Missing a few sets due to clashes or going along with what my friends wanted to see.  did anyone catch Julien Baker? gutted that I missed her.

The Pizza place running out of plates on the sunday evening and closing.

The decent beer selling out so quickly

also wish I had stayed up for the Ak/DK - Snapped Ankles secret set but I haven't got the stamina these days

 

A superb weekend and I hope to be there again next year.

 

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If I say my lowlight of the weekend was at one point I had to wait ten minutes at one of the bars to get served, then that probably says everything you need to know.

Some musical highlights -

-Hiss Golden Messenger and This is the Kit in the sun on friday afternoon...pretty much quintessential Garden stage

-St Vincent, who I've listened to so much this year since the first announcement, absolutely nailing it

-Oh Sees as good as ever. I was down the front and thought the sound was fine

-Haley Hayenderickx (something like that) with the most chilled out midday set I've seen

-Idles predictably absolutely killing it; such an amazing live band

-Black Midi showing up in the tip

My personal favourite moment was during Shame...I was right on the cusp of the pit, and during Angie the lead singer was standing on one of the speakers singing "In your happy place" and I just watched people of all ages barging in to each other having the time of the lives.....and it sounds silly to have an emotional moment during a band like Shame, but I did almost shed a tear.

In summary...the best EOTR I've ever been to, and also the best festival I've ever been to full stop.

Edited by Sean1234321
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It's the first one for me

I really enjoyed everyone I saw apart from St Vincent, sorry, just couldn't get into it. Stand outs were oh sees, gruff, oreilles. Liked most others despite not really knowing them. 

I loved the garden and surrounding areas. 

Gin bar was good. Food nearly all good in fact including the pizza place, Christ you lot are hard to please. Beer good. Cider bus always good.

I can't imagine what the toilets used to be like if they were 'bad' this year. And the queues were not that long. Didn't shower, it's not right.

Happily go again should the stars align

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Amazingweekend once again!!

the good:

where to start....IDLES, Richard Dawson, Duds, Protomartyr, Black Midi, Julia Holter, Mulatu Astake, This Is The Kit, Haley Heynderickx, Amen Dunes, Flat Worms, Hookworms, Zimpel/Ziolek and St Vincent were all fantastic. The line up this year was so good on paper and no one I was planning to see disappointed. Enjoyed Penelope Isles, Shame, Amyl and the Sniffers, Hiss Golden Messenger, Oh Sees and what I saw of Feist too.

I thought the Tipi was much better this year, caught some great stuff in there. Zimpel/Ziolek and Black Midi in particular were sensational.  Never had to spend longer than 5 minutes queuing which was fantastic.

The Garden remains as beautiful as ever.

The food was great too! Always a treat to go to a festival and have a tonne of choices, especially as a vegetarian.

Didnt spend a whole lot of time wandering around the woods this year but what I did see was lovely, glad they kept the Twin Peaks themes cinema.

Met a tonne of lovely people, many of whom I spent a good while chatting to/drinking with.

The beer

The weather!!!!!

I don't totally understand people complaining about the toilets and having to queue for the Big Top, that's just how it is during busy times and popular sets. I arrived 15mins before IDLES started and got a great spot.

the bad:

Daniel Blumberg - the songs themselves sounded good but the extended intros and outros were far too self indulgent and that violin....probably one of the harshest noises I've heard at a gig or festival set.

The numbers of talkers in the crowd seemed up on last year and it's gotta be said that nearly all of the people I saw chatting during sets were middle aged/older. Generally the younger people at the sets I attended kept quiet. Don't get me wrong tho there still wasn't too many talkers and general shitty behavior seemed down on last year which was good.

 

Overall it was really great once again, one of those weekends that you just don't want to end. Fantastic music in a fantastic place, already looking forward to next year.

Oh and I can't seem to tag you all but it was lovely to meet the three guys that I camped with, was a little nervous about going solo before coming but I really enjoyed all your company. Hope you all got home safely and enjoyed it as much as I did.

See you all next year!!

Edited by rhg_99

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One more mention to the dad with his kid on his shoulders who kept going in to the pits at various sets....it was probably terribly irresponsible, although he seemed to be a pro at it and the kid seemed to be loving it as well.

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Yeah the kid was clearly having the time of his life so I wouldn't look down on it, risky of course, but the crowd at this festival are for the most part not completely inhabilitated so I was never that concerned. 

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1 hour ago, rhg_99 said:

Oh and I can't seem to tag you all but it was lovely to meet the three guys that I camped with, was a little nervous about going solo before coming but I really enjoyed all your company. Hope you all got home safely and enjoyed it as much as I did.

See you all next year!!

It was a great little solo camp, good to meet you. Repeat next year maybe.

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1st End of the Road and it won't be the last, I had a fabulous weekend.

Highlights:

John Cale & Feist last night, - fabulous end to a festival.

Hayley Hendrix, Stella Donnelly, Wild Billy Childish, St Vincent, Vampire Weekend, Anna Burch, Flat Worms, Fat Whites, Insecure Men, Gwenno, This is the Kit

Goan Fish Curry, Marmite Melt Crumpet with English Breakfast Tea.

The Bear Tavern.

Lowlights.

The Bear Tavern running out of Honey Blonde.

Queues for ice creams yesterday.

Vampire Weekend/Oh Sees clash

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3rd year on the bounce at EOTR.

Weather was an amazing, especially after the Sunday of last year.

Loved:

Stella Donnelly, The Oh Sees, Destroyer, Jeff Tweedy & Jonathan Wilson on the Piano Stage, Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker, some great beer and expanding the Beavertown cans across the site worked in the heat, the food, generally nice and considerate crowds, the woods, the BBC 3 tent, great sound.

Before I go on, it's still a great festival and my favourite by a long shot (albeit I probably owe GM another go), so these criticisms come from anxiety about it going downhill or losing the magic. 

Frustrated by:

The stewarding, or lack of, this year. Much of which seemed down to the organisation and not individuals. The farce of the Tipi and Big Tops. One in, one out, for bands at quieter times of day which was farcical. I walked in for Japanese Breakfast, plenty of room, walked out for a drink and just as I exited the tent, one in, one out. Absolutely no management in place and panic actions. No one making sure people are stood up in the Tipi this year when full so more can get in. 

The numbers. Noticeably more people there this year (has it expanded from 13 to 16 thousand?) yet site and facilities have not changed at all. Everywhere was annoyingly busier. Although the weather played a big part, the Garden Stage was so much busier at normally quieter times. Ditto to every stage. Less space to chill and relax, but still more space than most other festivals.

Accessibility. A friend was recovering from an accident and was in the accessibility camping. There were no chairs on the viewing platforms for two days, and then not enough. Seems like a ridiculous oversight. Once the festival began, the festival was completely unresponsive to any communication. GM is seriously leagues ahead on this score.

Annoyed by: 

Boutique Campsite:

This year it became a posh family creche. Not great to be woken up by screaming children in the middle of the night and then by children running around tents shouting at 7-8am. I heard no one being loud coming back late drunk, but was woken up by irresponsible parenting every f*&^^*g night. Again, the capacity has increased but no increase in anything else. Issues made worse by 1/4 of toilets being regularly broken and half the showers being freezing cold and others ridiculously hot. Leading to much larger queues than usual. They turned up broken and were never properly fixed. Obviously all first world issues but when you pay extra for boutique camping you expect a reasonable experience. Noticeably less cleaning or checking. 

Toilets:

More queuing than normal and less cleaning. In fact, I saw one cleaning tanker all weekend actually on the site. They're still largely really good, but there were a number of cretins sticking cans down them this year. 

Vandalism:

There was a lot less respect than usual for the site. Many of the (lyric) leaves were taken, there was damage in the games area and people were disrespecting the art work and damaging the woods. Again, children not properly supervised. There were more noticeable casualties of the sun and alcohol this year and people treating art like it was there's to do what they want with it. We stopped a group stealing the bear's flower, for instance. 

General parenting: 

In addition to the comments above, in general there seemed to be more families at the festival with young children and vastly less thoughtfulness than in previous years (where I've never experienced any real problems other than the odd idiot). Kids on shoulders with parents moving into the crowd and blocking views happened frequently in the garden (although no less annoying than idiots with stupid hats or a monkey on a stick). prams in the dark parts of the Big Top without lights. Small children being left to run around all over the place.

Talking dung sets: Tends to be middle-aged men talking loudly and self-importantly about something which has nothing to do with music. 

Really annoyed by

The weather was great this year, but after the bad weather last year I expected the site to be changed to offer more of a contingency for bad weather. Nothing at all seemed to have been done. Absolutely nothing from everyone's feedback. Given the extra attendees and the queues for everything, it would have been absolutely horrendous if we'd had the rain again. 

 

Much of the above may seem harsh or even petty (as it;s still the best festival), but I think it's imperative when something is good that we fight to keep it that way. We have very little in this country which is good at the moment. I fear a general deterioration of EOTR.  I'll be going next year,  but will be hoping all the idiots bugger off back to Glastonbury. 

 

 

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3 hours ago, Avon said:

Mulatu Astatke's was up there with greatest ever EOTR sets. 

That was pretty special yeah. Incredible when they locked into a groove.

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Spectacularly good year. Highlights included Ezra Furman, Snapped Ankles, Richard Dawson playing Ogre, and pretty much the entirety of Friday afternoon: Stella Donnelly, Big Thief on the Piano Stage, Lucy Dacus, Warhaus. And yeah I know it's dickish to say oh their secret set was better than their main one, but Big Thief's secret set was better than their main one. Sorry.

And although I don't have them down as highlights I couldn't fault St Vincent or Vampire Weekend. Both played good crowd-pleasing sets with all their best and most famous stuff, and I was in the crowd so I was pleased.

The one thing that didn't really happen this year, I didn't find anyone unexpected, who I only saw by chance and turned out to be great; but against that - and more importantly than that - there wasn't anyone I'd wanted to see who underwhelmed. Everyone lived up to expectations and some substantially surpassed them.

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Actually, that's not true. There were a couple of disappointments - Fat White Family for one - I'd just already forgotten them.

Similarly I've no particular gripes about the festival organisation. I'd probably have to acknowledge the validity of some of the ones mentioned (were all those queues for Big Top and Tipi really necessary?) but it was really nothing that interfered with me having a great weekend.

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Our 7th since 2011, and I still cry a little tear as I walk out for the last time. Familiarity does dull the magic a little, and I find the more artists I explore upfront the less fun I gave discovering for the first time. 

First time we'd stayed Sunday night too, (though up at 6am); bit staggered how many tweets still pinging around at 4.30 😱

Lovely folk, great musical variety, unbeatable food and beer, as good as ever we thought.

HIGHLIGHTS

Julien Baker, "Televangelist" of course. First time seen her and basically wept.

Lucy Dacus biggest surprise, wonderful.

David Thomas Broughton. Seen loads of times, special as ever, my 17 year old son walked out in disgust.

Idles. Blew my son, and me away.

Hayley, Blame, Snail Mail, Gwenno, Sugg Friends and Plastic Mermaids (odd) impressed.

Outside the music, some good films in the lovely cinema (Boy on Sun and Wrong Trousers, of course).

Think we tried food from nearly every stall, and drank Beavertown out of Sapling. Good choice of dark beers.

Actually got some time in the games area early on and smashed my son at splatt the badger.

NOT AS GOOD

Dosa place rationing the onion bhajis !

Chatterers. One bloke in Tipi for Gwenno lost it with loud mouth near exit and kicked him, first disturbance I've seen at eotr. Volunteers handled it well.

Didn't hear anything life-changing I didn't know already, if honest. Probably best not to listen to too much before you go.

Great weekend.

 

 

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Trying again, hopefully text won't be MASSIVE this time!

Seventh year for me, this was certainly up there with the best. The weather certainly helped, whole different vibe when it is warm and sunny. Food and beer all great. Yes it seemed a little busier again but didn't really impact me. No toilet issues encountered.

These sets stood out for me from those that I saw (in no particular order):

Lucy Dacus - What a difference a couple of years (and a full band) makes. Has really grown as a songwriter and performer. Excellent second (and completely different) set too, particularly the last two songs with....

Julien Baker - Wow!! Such a mesmerising, emotionally charged performance on the Garden stage. Boygenius stuff with Lucy is sounding great too.

Feist - Such a pro, the way she handled the in-ear monitor failure was brilliant. Interesting set too, left out a couple of obvious crowd pleasers.

Iceage - Idles name-checked them as the best band in the world. They were very, very good indeed.

Haley Heynderickx - Beautiful set, in glorious sunshine, in the garden. Hard to beat.

Hookworms - Really intense experience, absolutely pounding. Light shows can sometimes distract but really complemented this. Future headliners in my opinion.

Boy Azooga - These guys look set for great things. Really fun set, cracking tunes, and look like they are having the time of their lives.

Shame - Great energy, good song-writing, front man with swagger, mental bassist. Superb. Questionable parenting on show in the crowd as mentioned above.

Snapped Ankles - WTF?!! How good was that!

Really enjoyed the bit of Idles I saw before heading off to get to the front for Feist, Lost Horizons and Stella Donnelly too.

Only disappointments were:

Julia Holter - Seen her before and she was brilliant. Here she was dreadful. Band seemed bored/annoyed with her, she seemed disinterested, just didn't work. Bailed after four songs.

Big Thief - Parts of this were good, but something just didn't seem right. Is Adrianne okay? Probably not helped by being one of my most eagerly anticipated acts of the weekend. Also not helped by group of youngsters near me loudly squirting wine down each others throats out of a wine box bag during some of her most subtle moments.

Further increase in number of chatters and bargy people who seem to think they have a divine right to be at the front at any time they turn up to see someone.

 

Overall, fantastic weekend, in some ways line-up was almost too good as barely had any time to look around the art installations, gardens, shops/stalls etc as too busy moving between the stages. Will be hoping to snap up early birds this morning.

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1 minute ago, RustySpanner said:

Julia Holter - Seen her before and she was brilliant. Here she was dreadful. Band seemed bored/annoyed with her, she seemed disinterested, just didn't work. Bailed after four songs.

 

Her set did improve as it went on but I agree with you more or less... was a disappointment

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Forgot to mention that I thought having disposable plastic cups at the bars was pretty poor, and goes against any claims they have of being an environmentally friendly festival. Other similar size/bigger festivals have a system where you get/buy a pint cup for the entire weekend, so i imagine the only reason EOTR don't do that is that they can't be bothered. 

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40 minutes ago, rug568 said:

Forgot to mention that I thought having disposable plastic cups at the bars was pretty poor, and goes against any claims they have of being an environmentally friendly festival. Other similar size/bigger festivals have a system where you get/buy a pint cup for the entire weekend, so i imagine the only reason EOTR don't do that is that they can't be bothered. 

I agree. They did have the reusable system around 5(?) years ago, from when I still have several rather lovely cups, then abandoned it. I complained to them at the time and was told that they reckon the disposable cups are MORE environmentally friendly! Whether or not this is true, I HATE them, they are horrible to drink out of and form about 90% of the litter on site. 

The year after abandoning the system, they were even refusing to fill reusable mugs that had been brought in. This year I saw several people using their own mugs/cups, so I shall bring my own next year. 

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I think there is something in the programme about a target date to stop using single use plastics at the festival.

 

Not that it matters, I suppose, in the larger scheme of things but getting rid of the disposable cups will lead to longer waits at some of the bars as they pre-pull pints currently.

Edited by IBee

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Missed this year, but have enjoyed reading all the comments - and have earmarked a few new things to listen to over the next few weeks based on the top sets of the weekend, so thanks! EOTR has been the source for most of the new music I've liked over the last 10 years I reckon.

Hopefully back next year. 

Was at home all weekend thinking 'great weather for EOTR'. 

:-)

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34 minutes ago, Fareham Grecian said:

I agree. They did have the reusable system around 5(?) years ago, from when I still have several rather lovely cups, then abandoned it. I complained to them at the time and was told that they reckon the disposable cups are MORE environmentally friendly! Whether or not this is true, I HATE them, they are horrible to drink out of and form about 90% of the litter on site. 

The year after abandoning the system, they were even refusing to fill reusable mugs that had been brought in. This year I saw several people using their own mugs/cups, so I shall bring my own next year. 

That's bollocks. I had around 10 pints over the weekend. 10 plastic cups is easily more plastic than 1 single mug/cup. I also still have reusable cups from festivals 5 years ago. Whilst there are thousands of disposable cups on the way to landfill. 

So i bought a GM reusable mug with me. On thursday night the guys behind the bar pulled pints into it. Then on Friday they refused and insisted they had to pour it into their disposable one. 

32 minutes ago, IBee said:

I think there is something in the programme about a target date to stop using single use plastics at the festival.

 

That's all very well about having a vague target but it's quite an easy fix, and as mentioned above they've actually reverted back to single use plastics. Sorry to turn into a bit of an eco bore but it's quite an easy fix and would have quite a large impact on the waste footprint of the festival imo. 

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'That's all very well about having a vague target but it's quite an easy fix, and as mentioned above they've actually reverted back to single use plastics. Sorry to turn into a bit of an eco bore but it's quite an easy fix and would have quite a large impact on the waste footprint of the festival imo.  '

 

And as mentioned before,  there's something special about using reusable, specially made for the festival pint cups. Plus the beer tastes so much better.........I recently went to the Thornbridge Brewery weekend beer festival, their pint cups were both perfect and artistic....... 

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