Rockness Countdown Begins

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The countdown to this year’s RockNess officially begins today as the Stage by Stage line up, revealing who is playing where and when, is announced!

Getting the party started on day one of the Most Beautiful Festival In The World – is the quite excellent MUMFORD & SONS who along with NOAH & THE WHALE, THE DRUMS, MYSTERY JETS and ADMIRAL FALLOW charge the MAIN STAGE, whilst Breakthrough Star ED SHEERAN, WRETCH 32 and ETIENNE DE CRECY head up the GOLDEN VOICE ARENA. The first class electro for which RockNess is famed commences in awesome form with EATS EVERYTHING and HUDSON MOHAWKE headlining the mighty CLASH presents SUB CLUB SOUND SYSTEM, with Baron of Techno DAVE CLARKE and CLAUDE VONSTROKE assuming control of the new ARCADIA UFO presented by SOMA RECORDS. The HOWARDS END ARENA in association with SOUND CITY presents the finest new music including THEOPHILUS LONDON and STARBOY NATHAN, topped with the much loved ROCKNESS CEILIDH ALL STARS.

Day two of RockNess - NME award winning ‘Best Small Festival’ for two consecutive years running - promises to be a moment of quite simply epic proportions as two of the world’s biggest names in dance head to Scotland.  With what is arguably the most spectacular show out of all the major electronic headliners right now, Californian superstar DJ and producer DEADMAU5 on the MAIN STAGE precluded by ANNIE MAC and DJ FRESH will be truly unmissable.  And in a double whammy, there is no bigger act to headline the GOLDEN VOICE ARENA on Saturday night than French electro Gods JUSTICE!  Not since Daft Punk played RockNess – a moment so iconic and mind bogglingly awesome that it is now widely acknowledged as one of the most seminal moments in Scottish music history - has there been an act that so frequently tops the wishlist of fans. With an all-French support of BUSY P, JACQUES LU CONT and MADEON, the GOLDEN VOICE roof will without any shadow of doubt be blown off.

International comedy superstar TIM MINCHIN heads up a first class comedy proposition at this year’s festival and is guaranteed a full house in Saturday afternoon’s GOLDEN VOICE ARENA with fast rising Scottish star DANIEL SLOSS and a host of other supremely talented funnymen (and ladies!) on the weekend bill too.  Saturday’s CLASH ARENA welcomes Special Guests THE VIEW to what is sure to be an ecstatic home crowd welcome. THE PIGEON DETECTIVES and GUILLEMOTS precede the Dundee rockers in the CLASH ARENA.  And as day becomes night, the CLASH ARENA transforms into the hedonistic clubbing utopia of the SUB CLUB SOUND SYSTEM with HARRI & DOMENIC headlining alongside LEVON VINCENT, IVAN SMAGGHE and SENSU. Over on the ARCADIA UFO, in a techno treat of cosmic proportions, BEN SIMS, JAMES HOLDEN and SILICONE SOUL are joined by ANDREW WEATHERALL and SEAN JOHNSTON who present ‘A Love From Outer Space’.

New music is well represented in Saturday’s HOWARDS END ARENA with BASTILLE, SAINT SAVIOUR and others, plus fun and games from BEARDED KITTEN (who also get the RockNess Express party antics going!).

From start to finish, day three of RockNess 2012 is simply heaving with quality.  Last time they played, the response was thunderous. This time they’re back and bringing the festival to an almighty close on the Sunday. Get set for the biggest finale you’ve ever seen as Scotland’s rock superstars BIFFY CLYRO bring the MAIN STAGE to a close!  Joining BIFFY CLYRO on Sunday’s MAIN STAGE is ZANE LOWE whipping the crowd into a frenzy as only he does best, the brilliant FRIENDLY FIRES, and the legend that is NILE RODGERS who along with CHIC will deliver a set of back to back all time disco classics.

Sunday’s GOLDEN VOICE ARENA is a stormer as THE KNIFE, METRONOMY and ROB DA BANK get the party well and truly rocking, while the CLASH ARENA sees ASH headline with a very special 20th Anniversary set alongside RIFLES and ERRORS.  Changing over into the SUB CLUB SOUND SYSTEM once dusk falls over Loch Ness, the arena goes into full effect with an exclusive 3 hour set from Detroit legend JEFF MILLS.  Over on the ARCADIA UFO, MYLO brings his famed EPP Party to Dores in another amazing exclusive with YUKSEK and TIGER and WOODS joining the Skye born maestro. Sunday’s new music proposition includes FOXES, CHARLOTTE O’CONNOR and STEALING SHEEP.

Plus there’s more! As one of Scotland’s premier destinations for DJs and clubbers, RockNess is delighted to welcome back Aberdeen’s CLUB SNAFU for more exemplary beats and good times to the new intimate Kopparberg Kube. Epitomising the sublime music policy of CLUB SNAFU, the boutique space will be headlined by Hot Creation’s funk and disco groovemeisters WiLDKATS, with the outstanding BIGFOOT’S TEA PARTY back to tear up the dancefloor again after last year’s exhilarating performance. CLUB SNAFU resident (and inaugural RockNess DJ Competition Winner) FUAD is one of the most hotly tipped producers on the scene, packing out the club on a Saturday night and we’re really happy to say he too is Dores bound along with fellow CLUB SNAFU resident KRAZZY MARTIN. A key member of Aberdeen’s clubbing community, KRAZZY MARTIN has staged some of the North’s most legendary parties in recent years. So he’ll be right at home at RockNess!  

It is with much excitement we can announce our friends at the sublime LUCKY ME collective will take control of the decks in the Kopparberg Kube on Sunday. Firmly at the fore of new hip hop, RnB, house and all things musically experimental, besides releasing vinyl and clothing, LUCKY ME direct in music and fashion. Founded in Glasgow by Mike Slott, Dominic Sum Flannigan, Martyn Flyn, and Ross Birchard (aka previously announced Sub Club Sound System penultimate headliner HUDSON MOHAWKE), LUCKY ME present a triple whammy of outstanding talent with S-TYPE, THE BLESSINGS and DEMA.  

Endorsed by Paul Weller, cult cockney mods THE RIFLES are packing out venues across the land and scooping rave reviews as they go with their no nonsense, no frills approach. Recently released album ‘Freedom Run’, the Chingford band’s third, offers tracks that burst into life with the brightest of harmonies. Catch them at RockNess for as good a guitar pop set as you’re likely to hear in 2012.
Multi-national, multi-instrumentalist and multi-talented. GUILLEMOTS don’t do understatement. Mercury Prize and Brit nominated, their music is a lesson in modern brilliance. Ambitious arrangements, expansive beauty and some seriously large-scale emotion, the quartet make music that is, according to charismatic frontman Fyfe Dangerfield “to be heard across the night sky". And where more seductive than Loch Ness. Unmissable.
The most recent spinoff of the Wu Tang-like Odd Future collective, THE INTERNET is a hip hop soul duo consisting of female DJ, singer and producer SYD THA KYD and producer MATT MARTIANS of LA skateboarding hip hop collective OFWGKTA (Wolf Gang Kill Them All).  The brilliant young duo’s skeletal beats and smoothed out cooing hit the internet a few months back and RockNess is extremely pleased to be welcoming THE INTERNET to Scotland for the first time.
Arriving with her Neon Gold Records debut ‘Youth’ late last year, the resplendent synths, industrial percussion and soaring vocals of FOXES (Louisa Rose Allen) were the talk of the town.  Now the 22 year old from Southampton returns with eagerly awaited follow up EP, ‘Warrior’ on 1st July, with RockNess the perfect precursor to showcase the new material live.
The exquisite STEALING SHEEP have had an impressive rise over the last twelve months. Show stealing performances across the UK and a nod from Sir Paul McCartney has seen the all-female Liverpool trio gain a growing audience. Far from just another folk clone, the influence of 60's psychedelic rock and pop can be clearly heard across their beautifully crafted songs and unusual instrumentation.
Folky and soulful, CHARLOTTE O’CONNOR admits her musical influences are far reaching. Growing up in Blackburn with a half-Malawian/half-Indian mum and an Irish father, she was exposed to all kinds of sounds. And for that we should be thankful. Debut album ‘For Kenny’ released in March was “romantic and fun with a lot of energy” and is set to be swiftly followed up with an as yet untitled EP late summer.
Last but certainly by no means least, Inverness’ KOBI aka Steve Robertson, Gary Thain and Dave Smith have a big vision for 2012. Having spent several years honing their multifaceted, voyeuristic sound on the live circuit, which most notably included a support slot to Shaun Ryder, the recording of the trio’s debut album is soon to commence in Spain.  Catch them this summer at Dores and hear the new material in full effect.
Speaking about the official countdown to RockNess, Festival Director JIM KING commented, “So this is it. Not long to go now. Only 17 more sleeps and then the summer officially starts! Even more acts across the weekend and great that Snafu and Lucky Me are joining the party. Major congratulations to Kottis for winning this year's DJ competition too.”

Published on 23 May 2012 by Ben Robinson

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