photo credit: RadioNowhere.org
During our first visit to Indietracks in 2009 we knew we had stumbled across something pretty special. Whilst many niche festivals and their devotees might see those who joined the party later as some kind of interlopers, the lovely people here just stretch out their arms and welcome you into the fold. Being such a small, distinctive scene there is huge potential for pretentiousness and cliquey behaviour, yet we have found very little evidence of these amongst the hardcore who you just know attend every single one of the indiepop events organised in the UK, in Madrid, New York, Berlin, etc.
We have had the good fortune to meet some wonderful people at Indietracks; the friendliness is like nothing we have ever experienced at other gigs or festivals, and it is quite normal to just start chatting with others in the Merchandise Tent, whilst watching bands, and when going to and from the festival on the trains. Most of the bands we have met at Indietracks have told us about a friend’s band that we just must not miss, and most of the ticket-buyers at the festival have a personal connection of some kind with at least one of the bands playing over the weekend. Loads of people have asked us for recommendations for people to watch and, whilst that might not seem all that unusual as we do run a radio station, most of them don’t even know that, they just want to chat and find out something about a new band. Pretty much everyone who goes to the festival is incredibly open-minded about new bands and see more than a few bands each year that they have never heard of before, meaning that most performances have a really good crowd. This extends to the sale of merchandise, as the Merch Tent offers a temporary shop-front to every band playing the festival following their set and the merchandise just flies off the table – I have never seen so many happy shoppers clutching new vinyl, t-shirts, stickers and badges. Not only is the Merch Tent for selling stuff, it is also the venue for impromptu acoustic sets from artists performing at the festival and from other artists who just happen to be there!
If you haven’t been, be sure to next year. It has to be the most relaxing and enjoyable festival experience in the UK, it is totally family friendly, full of nice people, and all for a good cause – providing funds for the Midland Railway Museum.
All of the artists interviewed by RadioNowhere over the weekend will be featured in an Indietracks special and some of those artists will also be serving time in The Vinyl Dungeon very soon… visit radionowhere.org for more information or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.