In its blurb OutCider promises ‘music lovers, free thinkers, eclectic music, no carling lager, no tossers and no hipsters.’ Which is, quite a tall order for an 18+ drinking weekend but there’s a lot more to this festival than Cider and getting drunk (although these, as the name suggests do occur across the weekend).
However before we do start on the line up of beers, the music, much as the blurb boasts, is eclectic with something for everyone. From all-girl pop-punk indie band the Tuts to festival favourites and worthy headliners Ferocious Dog.
Despite the well-programmed line-up of consistently eclectic quality bands, if there was to be an archetypal OutCider act it would be one- man-one-guitar, acoustic-punk, walking-revolution Beans On Toast. As the barefoot troubadour beamed ‘be a breath of fresh air’ to a packed crowd he was almost laying down the OutCider manifesto. Climbing over PA stacks, boasting witty songwriting and dancing in the crowd at every opportunity – with Bobby Banjo at his side - this show was a masterclass in finding festival stardom.
Other musical highlights included Dick Venom and the Terrortones. Dressed in jet black spandex trousers, classic cowboy boots and gothic make-up Dick Venom certainly looked the part. With sporadic thermion solos, electrifying vocals, stage presence you can’t ignore and solid riffs, the Terrortones sounded it too.
Dana Immanuel & the Stolen Band held the crowd with a timeless mix of passion, flawless musicianship and on-point vocals. Theatrical riotous gypsy punk pirates Filthy Spectacula, the unmissable Funke & the Two Tone Baby, Sam Green & the Midnight Heist, the Marksmen, Louise Distras, Counting Coins and a shedload of other brilliant bands also featured on the bill. The two shed stages gave OutCider a signature look and the alternating stages meant people could catch everyone whether they were festival stalwarts or your new favourite band.
In between the music a trip to Nana’s Kitchen was an OutCider must. The travelling café provides a lovely well-priced homemade meal made by festival goers turned chefs in a spotless kitchen. Highly recommended and a perfect supplement to the equally popular OutCider-run café.
While we’re on festival food it feels like a good time to move onto OutCider’s namesake – Cider! The bar was a Cider drinker’s idea of heaven, and a carling lager drinker’s idea of hell. OutCider did exactly what it said on the tin if the joyous energy in the bar was anything to go by. Real ales were also on-sale in the festival’s self-run bar.
After grabbing a pint when the music was over the toasty campfire became a home for the all-nighters of the festival. With ‘campfire sessions’ by EFF OFF, Captain Hotknives and impromptu performances, this was the icing on a value-for-money OutCider shaped cake.
OutCider got it just right. Great music, great people and great weekend to match. Everyone felt part of it from the bartender to the compere to the crowd. Whether they were a drinker, a festival regular, a first-timer or a music lover OutCider had something for everyone and opened its arms to all.
I was sad to leave on the Sunday morning, so please post your own comments about the Sunday below.
5-7thof August are the dates for OutCider 2016
Published on 03 August 2015 by Ned Mansfield