Review, Yard Life Festival @ Islington Metal Works

I admit it; I’m just not that much of a festival person. This born and bred Londoner panics over the thought of doling out three hundred quid just to spend three days without showering and eating overpriced bacon rolls. Thank god then for Yardlife; a metropolitan music lover’s paradise.

The one-year-old festival in aid of MS Research showcased some of the most exciting new artists around. The historic Islington Metal Works, which was adorned with flowers and bustling with indie kids, ravers, and fashionistas in Lana Del Rey headbands, encapsulated a warm, infectious festival atmosphere whilst remaining defiantly urban.

And there was certainly no shortage of musical treats this Easter Weekend. The twinkly, Belle and Sebasian-esque, Thank Pablo, included both a hoedown and a Paul Simon cover. Then there were Electric Palms, who make evocative, garage rock complete with harmonious riffs and retro, gravelly vocals. New Zealand’s Two Cartoons’ psychedelic surf pop made it feel like the summer months had rolled in early. Upstairs, hotly tipped Courtly Love exuded pure smoky, velvet draped, rock n’ roll glamour.

Special mention should also be given to half-pint sized Iggy wannabe, Ned The Kid’s Dylan- who at thirteen (thirteen?!) had us either gawping in astonishment or, (particularly amongst the more joyless and resentful section of the crowd), shouting “isn’t it your bed time?”. But it was Gorgeous George who won my heart this weekend. These Ian Dury inspired boys from Saaaahf London accompany their anarchic cockney tales of the petty, modern day powers that be and crap aftershave with thundering, European folk and had us all leaping around like drunken, carnival idiots. I defy you to have more fun.

So, thank you Yard Life- I danced, I rocked out, and I discovered some truly outstanding bands without having to leave Zone 2. Hallelujah!

Image: Mr Gresty
Image: Mr Gresty

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