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Latitude Festival 2014 review

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Latitude Festival 2014 review

In July 2006, Latitude innovated the great British music festival by adding theatre, art, comedy, cabaret, poetry, politics, dance and literature into the mix. The result put Suffolk on the festival map.

Nine Latitudes later and the festival is still Suffolk’s best – a mantle that it’s unlikely to lose anytime soon.

Latitude also remains one of the UK’s best festivals by virtue of what made it so innovative back in the day. But, given that 2015 will mark its 10th birthday, we’re wondering if now might be a good time for the organisers to make a few tweaks…

The food sucks pretty bad, give or take the odd gem such as wood-fire pizza and decent burritos served up by the Burrito Boys. Festival Republic either don’t care or don’t appreciate that Suffolk is home to amazing local produce that could and should be on the menu a lot more than it is in the huts and vans of the site’s caterers… Yes, we know the Lakeside Restaurant serves avocado and asparagus salad, a retro prawn cocktail, chicken schnitzel, cheese wurst and steak with triple-cooked chips – but we’re not all loaded and middle class!

The same goes for the booze. Tuborg or pure English lager brewed in Suffolk? Somersby Cider or Aspall Cyder? So, let’s have more of The Cockatoo and less of the dross, please Melvin.


So, to the acts…

We loved First Aid Kit and Damon Albarn on Saturday night. The gorgeous Swedish duo didn’t disappoint with pitch-perfect harmonies and folk melodies that seemed a perfect fit with the Suffolk landscape. And Damon clearly enjoyed what has to be one of the best sets that Latitude has ever hosted, as the crowd jumped in the pouring rain to pre Everyday Robots classics.

Local artists did their home county proud, with Horse Party and those old toilet dwellers, Dingus Khan, particularly outstanding.

For the record, we know that there are lots of you Dingus Khan fanatics out there, and we know that you carry around indelible ink pens in your pockets, and grafitti toilet cubicles in honour of your Suffolk brothers and heroes, but… IP1 DOES NOT CONDONE YOUR BEHAVIOUR. IT IS RUDE AND BAD TO GRAFITTI TOILETS THAT ADVERTISE WHEN DINGUS KHAN WILL BE PLAYING THE ALCOVE STAGE…


There was some good stuff going on in the Cabaret tent too – we found the madam able to spin several hula hoops about her personage to the deafening rock of ACDC particularly compelling… And the weirdy beardy live art concealed in the trees was fun, such as Electric Girl.

The surreally beautiful nighttime lake performances were, as they always are, rather magical and hypnotic - particularly when you’ve had a few. And the comedy tent was, when we popped out of the sun and into the dark, generally funny.

We didn’t see any theatre or literature (shame on us culturally starved imbeciles!) We saw some poetry but wished we hadn’t… We preferred to lollop and laze in the sun and go crazy at the parties in the woods until 3am…

So yeah, much fun was had and Latitude still rocks. But it musn’t get complacent, else the magic and the mystery might start to wear thin…


1 getonthesoapbox | on 08 August 2014

How much poetry did you see? If you go to Latitude & don’t give the poetry tent some serious time then you are missing the point. Scroobius Pip. Kate Tempest. Salena Godden. Attila The Stockbroker. And those are just off the top of my head, all known for their work in music & spoken word, with Attila claiming a 30 yr DIY career under his belt. Kate Tempest’s current album in hitting all sorts of charts. Love & Boxes xxxx

2 Howard | on 21 August 2014

Quite right Amy, that was ignorance and sloppy journalism on my part. I confess to spending just 10 mins in the poetry tent - there was doubtless some great talent in there that I missed. xx

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