Larmer Tree 2011 Review A stimulating glorious feast

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Larmer Tree 2011
Following a rapturous opening by Jools Holland on Wednesday, the Larmer Tree festival reached a climax on its last night yesterday with an incredible performance from Seasick Steve. The blues crooner wowed the biggest audience of the five day festival with a beautiful solo on his three-string guitar.

Despite the non-stop rain, festival goers were replenished with increasingly captivating performances night after night, sandwiched between some of Britain’s quirkiest young comedians namely Russell Kane and Andi Osho. 

Other highlights include a special set for children by Ozokidz and a full Ozomatli performance, blazing through Latin, Hip Hop and Rock in brilliant mashed up tracks. 

Giving a taster of what it might have been live to witness Jimi Hendrix play was Vieux Farka Toure, who is described as the Hendrix of the Sahara. This might now be an understatement following his extraordinary world-class performance.  

Providing a drop of colour to the Folk extravaganza was the genre-busting Asian Dub Foundation who transformed the lawn into an 90s punk-metal rave with their performance of their 2002 hit Fortress Europe. The defiantly political 7-piece band highlighted the current hacking scandal surrounding red top tabloids and touched on immigration and multiculturalism. The brazenly middle class crowd languidly responded in agreement but were soon bowled over halfway through the set. Some of the wackiest shapes were thrown during this set, even more than the six-hour silent disco!

Although a stark diversion from the very folky line up, there couldn’t be a more suitable stage for Asian Dub Foundation who have remained defiantly un-commercial in their 15 year union. The 2011 festival marked Larmer Tree’s twenty-first year since inception. It proved again that it is possible to run a festival truly for people and with cultural stimulation of varieties at its core.

Larmer Tree is not about headlining acts and debate over which genre of music is acceptable. It is simply about music and people, spreading a peaceful energy of magic and calm. Particularly fascinating was its site art installations of the Wishing Tree and one thousand floating origami doves and of course, the secret garden. Truly in touch with its environment in the beautiful pleasure gardens, it is really of feast of music, adventure, culture, nature and celebration.

Published on 20 July 2011 by sarahpeace

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