Tag Archive | "The Big Chill 2011"

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The Big Chill 2011 – Festival Review.

Posted on 12 August 2011 by Glenn Tucker

The Big Chill 2011 – Festival Review.

If you are looking for a festival that includes Sunday night riots, toilet tipping and tent burning, kicking your way to the front of the crowd with an elbow or two in your face as you go along and trudging through a newly decorated field of plastic cups and condoms on your way back then The Big Chill is the last place you should go.

This isn’t to say I don’t enjoy a good rock festival with all the above but when I first thought of what a festival should be I imagined more of a family friendly, hippy approach with alternative treatments, niche bookshops onsite and strangers gathering around campfires in the evening. Lo and behold, The Big Chill 2011 had all of these.

Unfortunately we missed the Friday night performance by The Chemical Brothers, arriving around lunchtime on Saturday, but were lucky enough to setup camp and get down to the noticeably clean arena (thanks to the kids picking up branded cups in exchange for 10p each) with more than enough time to get our bearings and start the day off with a quality Mojito from the Bacardi tent.

The site itself was huge with plenty to see and do, including a separate area for families and children that was heavily guarded, and despite our best efforts to gain entry with our press passes we were turned away.

Instead we paid a visit to the Enchanted Garden, an area for alternate therapies including Reiki, Hypnotherapy, various deep tissue massage areas and even tea and sauna tents but most importantly they had a hot and spicy cider truck which was welcome treat as the weather was not the kindest with wind, rain and only small amounts of sunshine making an appearance. The Enchanted Garden also contained an Art Trail; open from 9pm till 2am which we explored much later in the evening and consisted of various audio visual displays and ambient lighting, clearly designed for those not just drinking alcohol but an interesting addition nonetheless. I can’t say it was not amusing watching people hang their thoughts on the tree that instructed them to share their mind apples.

The first performance we caught were Metronomy on the main stage (the Deer Park Stage) and next was Jessie J who performed brilliantly despite having to sit down for her whole set due to an injury. The sound quality was fantastic for both of these and for all other acts we caught too, including a newly gained favourite of mine, Kraak en Smaak.

Normally I would expect a festival site to quiet down after the main act but The Big Chill had plenty going after hours including a killer set by Kissy Sellout and a packed Bacardi stage. With the guest area tents open till 5am with fire bowls all set out to keep the chill away we thought we would be out for the rest of the night but even after a quick rest and recovery we made an unforgivably early retirement at only 2am.

Sunday morning brought some early sunshine and as we made our way back to the main arena we couldn’t help but notice how clean the grounds were looking once again. Not a single cup, can or bottle was left in sight and already families were out enjoying the day.

Unfortunately the weather did not hold out and the temperature dropped as we took cover in the psychedelic White Rabbit Lounge, a space for chilling and, by the looks of most people there, leaving your mind at the door and fetching it again on the way out.

Once the worst of the rain had passed we made one last brave effort to catch a couple more acts including British reggae group Steel Pulse. If the sun was shining they would have fitted in seamlessly but unfortunately I was finding it hard to identify with their upbeat groove as I watched the breath form in front of my face. The North Mississippi Allstars Duo were the final act for us, bringing a Southern Blues sound to the Malvern Hills which would have been a lot more enjoyable once again, in some sunshine.

Overall The Big Chill festival was a hit and delivered on every level. For families it was safe, clean and Friendly. For the individual it was engaging and exciting and for a group of three it was exhausting but exhilarating and is definitely on my list of festivals to visit in 2012.

 

The Big Chill – Back view of the Main Stage

Chris Cunningham announced to close The Big Chill

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Chris Cunningham announced to close The Big Chill

Posted on 18 May 2011 by Mizzle

As the festival becomes closer and more acts are announced in the line-up, we have heard from the organisers of this year’s Big Chill Festival that acclaimed video artist Chris Cunningham has been confirmed to close on Sunday at the Deer Park Stage.

Cult film-maker, musician, photographer and producer Chris Cunningham is responsible for some of the most iconic music videos ever made, amongst a myriad of other accomplishments.

He has been dubbed ‘Dangerously ahead of his time’ by The Guardian and ‘A startlingly original visual artist’ by The Telegraph. On the back of a sold out show at the Royal Festival Hall in May last year and recent collaborations with Gil Scott-Heron and Grace Jones, Cunningham returns to the stage this summer.

He will be closing the Deer Park Stage on Sunday, following the set by headliners Rodrigo y Gabriela. Cunningham will create a sight and sound spectacular, bringing The Big Chill to a close in true style.

Kanye West and The Chemical Brothers confirmed for The Big Chill

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Kanye West and The Chemical Brothers confirmed for The Big Chill

Posted on 19 April 2011 by Mizzle

As the line-up for this year’s Big Chill festival is announced we are pleased that The Chemical Brothers have announced their return to headline.

Also confirmed on the bill is Kanye West in a UK festival exclusive that will join a list of other first class artists confirmed for Eastnor Castle Deer Park in Herefordshire on 4th-7th August.

The Chemical Brothers will headline on Friday night and Kanye will headline on Saturday night joining other acts including Neneh Cherry, 2manyDJ’s and Robert Plant.

Also confirmed are Katy B, Calvin Harris, Jamie Woon and Kissy Sell-Out.

“I am very pleased to unveil the first announcement for The Big Chill, ushering in the festival’s impressive 17th year.

Having been at the forefront as a ‘boutique’ event we have put together a programme that reflects The Big Chill’s heritage whilst offering up new and exciting developments for our audiences old and new alike. To be able to offer such well respected and diverse performances, from our headliners to our international artists and breakthrough names is a true pleasure and we are thrilled to be able to evolve the musical content of the festival. What’s more, we are very lucky this summer as two of our headline acts are UK festival exclusives which is brilliant. In turn, The Big Chill 2011 will welcome the return of some key elements that have defined the festival over its 17 years including a much enhanced The Big Chill Radio, which will see it having its own stage, and Tom Middleton who, having played at every Big Chill since the very beginning is more involved in the festival than ever this year curating his own stage. Of course The Big Chill extends to much more than our musical line-up and festival goers will once again be able to enjoy the Art Trail in full and we are extremely pleased to be working with the local community to radically expand aspects such as our family and children’s entertainment through the creation of The Little Chill; a festival within in its own right. 2011 is a celebration of all that The Big Chill has been throughout its history and a bold step forward to what will be a very bright future. We look forward to seeing you there, “said Melvin Benn, Festival Republic.

Tickets are still available for the festival at various prices; for more information and to view a full line-up visit www.bigchill.net/festival.