Latitude Festival 2011 - Friday

Fools’ Gold steal the day
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Secluded at the back of the woods, tucked away across the lake, where you can take a punting ride through the floating paper lily decorations, lies Latitude’s Sunrise stage. Not just a wonderful area for lounging under a tree and watching artists construct their installations, but also great for seeing bands with just the right amount of excessive exuberance. Possibly they have been kept away from the rest of the festival for their own safety, possibly because the rest of the festival’s not ready for them yet, but either way it’s well worth the small detour to investigate.

The Phantom Band lasso the crowd with their psychedelic-doom-indie-electronica, a la Tunng (if you tone down the folk slightly and crank up the shredding). They’re simultaneously menacing and twisted, indie disco and effervescently energetic - like an older, “more experienced” brother of Grouplove, who also grace the Sunrise stage. Grouplove cascade life-affirmingly joyous indie; not twee, not rock, but nicely, slightly boisterously, just right for a Friday afternoon early-weekend crowd, who delight in nothing more than dancing to just that sort of soundtrack. Which of course can only ever be improved several hundred-fold, by the addition of a stash of hand-decorated space-hopper-sized yellow and white balloons released into the crowd for set-finale Colours.

But if we’re talking dancing, Fools’ Gold steal the day with their north-African inspired acid pop, totally natural in their delivery and improvisation, accomplished in their marrying of cultures, delivering Western influenced indie as capably as their freestyle jamming - which has the crowd ecstatic. And with Fight Like Apes, Crystal Fighters, and Gold Panda lined up for the rest of the weekend we can expect more highly welcome enthusiasm to come.

Words by Elly Oracle

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