Isle of Wight Build Up // Arno Carstens // Luna Tear // Anavae // deVience // Hashtag // Freazy // Alex Ohm // Rival Bones // Glass Peaks // Noble Jacks //

Ranging from mainstream South African rock god Arno Carstens to Madonna tribute acts and foot-stomping fiddlers Noble Jacks, the Isle of Wight has something for everyone. To prepare you for this four-day musical extravaganza, Nexus Music Blog has infiltrated the line up (electronically, of course) interviewing the artists as a build-up to the festival.


Arno Carstens

Credit: One Small Change

Arno Carstens, platinum-selling singer-songwriter and frontman for cult rock band Springbok Nude Girls, has released multiple albums, with a string of successful singles and awards including ‘Best Rock Album’, ‘Best Alternative Album’ and ‘Song of the Year’. He has toured with INXS, U2 and the Rolling Stones and performed internationally at Glastonbury, Hard Rock Calling and VFestival. He’s been called “The Godfather of South African Rock” by Mail & Guardian and Sunday Times have hailed him as ‘one of the most prolific songwriters and performers of our time.’ Arno Carstens will perform on Sunday at 1:55 pm at the Hard Rock Stage.

How would you describe yourself as an artist/band for those who haven’t heard of you?

Arno: “I’m a conglomeration of everything I like, with influences from the UK and the US, set on a solid South African foundation. My background is alternative rock, and I started my career as the front man of Springbok Nude Girls. In my solo capacity, as a singer-songwriter, I perform with an acoustic guitar in both English and Afrikaans. My band includes drums, electronica and trumpet.”

How are you feeling in the build-up to your performance at the Isle of Wight?

Arno: “I’m very excited to share what I’ve been up to since last time I visited the UK, to see old friends, and to enjoy all the talent that John and his team have in store for us this year.”

What sort of preparation do you have as an artist for a festival of this size?

Arno: “Just put together a nice set that represents the best of yourself. I’ll be coming with two very talented musicians so I’ll be safe.”

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

Arno: “Depeche Mode,  Kasabian, Manic Street Preachers.

Who do you feel should be on the lineup for next year?

Arno: “Tears for Fears and Pearl Jam.


Luna Tear

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Credit: Luna Tear

Luna Tear is an English rock band from the Isle of Wight. With Ed Hart on guitar and vocals, Henry Holmes on drums and backup vocals, and Merton Lansley on bass, this threesome is starting to build their repertoire. According to Ed, “at the moment, we’re looking into just recording more of our stuff, finding our feet and getting songs together.” You can enjoy their performance at the Platform One Stage on Friday at 4 pm.

How would you describe yourself as an artist/band for those who haven’t heard of you?

Ed: “We typically label ourselves as just rock or indie rock.”

How are you feeling in the build-up to your performance at the Isle of Wight?

Ed: “In the build-up, I personally feel pretty calm, you kind of know what to expect.”

What sort of preparation do you have as an artist for a festival of this size?

Ed: “Our preparation isn’t different from any other show we do, just practise as much as we can and get it as good as we can.”

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

Ed: “I actually haven’t looked much at the line up this year, the other two might have a better answer for that one.”

Who do you feel should be on the lineup for next year?

Ed: “As for next year’s line up. Personally, I’d love to see St.Vincent, who has a pretty creative live show. She’s paraded at a lot of festivals and would suit the environment. Maybe something like Talking Heads or Regina Spektor would give the line up a bit more of a diverse soundscape.”

 


 Anavae

Credit: Rebecca Need-Menear

Anavae is an English alternative rock duo based in London. Rebecca Need-Menear and Jamie Finch are highly talented and friendly twenty-something musicians who are tearing up the UK festival scene in 2018. Based on an overwhelming response to funding their music independently, Anavae is now unsigned and are using a PledgeMusic campaign to record new music. Anavae is performing Sunday at 8pm on the Hard Rock Stage.

How would you describe yourself as an artist/band for those who haven’t heard of you?

Becca: “Two people who make a lot of noise. We’re a mixture of rock, dark pop and electronics. I usually sing about having an identity/existential crisis.”

How are you feeling in the build-up to your performance at the Isle of Wight?

Jamie: “We’re excited to be playing a festival that even my Dad has heard of, and he’s coming too. He can’t wait to see Jessie J.”

Becca: “We’ve never actually been to the Isle of Wight festival, so to be playing it as first-time visitors makes it feel even cooler.”

What sort of preparation do you have as an artist for a festival of this size?

Jamie: “We try not to get too caught up in how big or small each of our shows is. We want to play the same show every time regardless of the stage or crowd size.”

Becca: “Apparently, we’re on at the same time as the Manic Street Preachers, so we’ll be grateful if anyone shows up to watch us at all.”

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

Jamie: “Liam Gallagher.

Becca: “I’m certainly intrigued to see what the Cirque de la Quirk stage is all about. I’ll definitely be checking out Mullally. I caught him at The Great Escape last year, and he sounded incredible.”

Who do you feel should be on the lineup for next year?

Jamie: “Oasis.”

Becca: “What? Lykke Li, please! I still haven’t caught her live, and I’m super-cut up about that, or Now, Now. They’re going to be massive. They better be massive!”


deVience

Credit: Scarab Pictures

deVience is a UK-based hard rock band built on attitude, swagger and pulsating tunes. Established in 2013, Giovanni Spano, Donnie Roulstone, Jim O’Connor, Ben Porter and Olli Porter came together to build on their shared passion for making music. Having toured extensively from the UK to the US and back, deVience has a constant electrifying performance to match their rocking sound. deVience is performing on Sunday at 6:34 pm on the Hard Rock Stage.

How would you describe yourself as an artist/band for those who haven’t heard of you?

Giovanni: “We’re a hard rock outfit from London mixing swaggering riffs with catchy choruses. We love to give the audience the party they deserve. With memorable melodies, we aim to have our fans (old/new) singing their hearts out and bouncing.”

How are you feeling in the build-up to your performance at the Isle of Wight?

Giovanni: “We want to be up there right now rocking out. We’ve spoken to so many folks who have been to the festival, and they say it’s epic, so bring on the 24th June. It truly is an honour to be playing #IOW50, and we can’t wait.”

What sort of preparation do you have as an artist for a festival of this size?

Giovanni: “PRACTISE, PRACTISE, PRACTISE. Oh yeah, and get some good rest the night before the show.”

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

Giovanni: “The Killers were a big part of my growing up so it’ll be rad to see them play, but I’m most looking forward to Sheryl Crow. What a rock star!”

Who do you feel should be on the lineup for next year?

Giovanni: “GNR. Why not?”

 


Hashtag

Credit: Anna Mustchin
All three members are long-standing stalwarts of the Isle of Wight live music scene and have played in various local bands over the last 25 years. Following the dissolution of their previous group at the end of 2011, Nigel (guitar and vocals) and Jason (drums) decided they wanted to keep playing (having played together for some 20 years) but they wanted to try a different direction; therefore, they made the journey out to the land of funk. The lineup was completed by Scott who had played in many Island bands and, as luck would have it, played a wicked funky bass! Hashtag is performing at the Electro Love Stage on Saturday at 2 pm.
How would you describe yourself as an artist/band for those who haven’t heard of you?

Hashtag: “I guess you would say that we are a funk/rock trio, we’ll be doing a covers set for Electro Love at the IoW Festival and although we do songs that are straight funk or soul numbers because of the three-piece setup they tend to come over in a rocky kinda style.”

How are you feeling in the build-up to your performance?

Hashtag: “Oh, excited for sure. Being Islanders, it was always something of an ambition to be able to play the IoW Festival and to have been lucky enough to be invited onto the awesome Electro Love stage for three years in a row now is amazing!”

What sort of preparation do you have as an artist for a festival the size of this?

Hashtag: “Depending on the theme, it’s about song selection and getting those songs as polished as we can for the performance so lots of rehearsal – also we usually have a bit of a chat about how we’re going to look, this year has something of a ‘gold’ theme.”

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

Hashtag: “For me (Nigel) personally it’s got to be Chic, you can’t pass up a Nile Rodgers guitar lesson! Also Freak Power at Electro Love, Soul II Soul and Sigrid. Not forgetting our musician friends from local bands, who are also playing.”

Who do you feel should be on the line-up for next year?

Hashtag: “Now that’s a dangerous question to ask a man who likes lists! I would love to see – Earth, Wind & Fire, The Average White Band, Chaka Khan, Brand New Heavies, Brother Strut, PB Underground, Tin Spirits, Steely Dan, Doobie Brothers, Alice Cooper, Saxon, Thunder, Anathema, Todd Rundgren, Joe Walsh, Hall & Oates, Marillion… I’ll shut up now!”


Freazy

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Freazy is a three-piece indie-ish band hailing from the Southern part of the UK. Playing shows with King No-One, Rhythm Method, and VANT, Lily, Anna and Keetan are making waves in the music scene.  Despite being a new band with a debut single only released last year, Freazy is ready to spread their psychedelic wings and fly. Freazy is performing on Friday at 6 pm at the Platform One Stage.

How would you describe yourself as an artist/band for those who haven’t heard of you?

Freazy: “I guess we are a female fronted, grungy, indie pop band that doesn’t take themselves too seriously. We’re basically three friends who make a bit of music, and we’ve had the chance to do some really cool stuff which we are really grateful for.”

How are you feeling in the build-up to your performance at the Isle of Wight?

Freazy: “Super looking forward to the performance and the weekend as a whole. It means a lot to be playing at this festival in particular because we’ve all been going since we were young having grown up on the island, and being inspired by seeing live music at the festival.”

What sort of preparation do you have as an artist for a festival of this size?

Freazy: “From past experiences of playing at the festival we’ve learnt that if anything is going to go wrong, it’s Anna’s gear, so she’s finally got round to actually fixing it in preparation!”

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

Freazy: “Sigrid! The girls love a bit of sing-along-pop. We’ve been fans of Blossoms for a long time too, so we are definitely going to catch them. Of course, we couldn’t miss The Killers.”

Who do you feel should be on the lineup for next year?

Freazy: “The Japanese House, Wolf Alice, St Vincent, and Tom Misch. Foo Fighters and Biffy Clyro should definitely come back, we could go on…”

 


Alex Ohm

Credit: Luke Jones

Midlands based songsmith, Alex Ohm, has become a renowned name on the local music scene who is currently writing and recording new material to release later this year. Alex’s alternative, cinematic symphonies reflect the full range of influences that inspire his work and come together to create his unique sound. Alex will be performing in the This Feeling Tent.

How would you describe yourself as a band for those who haven’t heard of you?

Alex Ohm: “That’s a tricky one. I always say come and find out for yourself. Imagine The War on Drugs wrestling Alt J with Hans Zimmer as the ref, and you’re getting close.”

How are you feeling in the build-up to your performance?

Alex Ohm: “We can’t wait! This is our first major festival ever in England, and we’re all feeling pretty electric about it! What a line up to be part of as well! We’re looking forward to sharing our songs with a whole new bunch of people.”

What sort of preparation do you have as an artist for a festival the size of this?

Alex Ohm: “No preparation as such other than playing gigs in the run-up to it. I’m not sure you can prepare as such. When you get onto the stage in that sort of setting you just get immersed in it and whatever happens, happens. We’ve recently played London and Liverpool with Pirate Studios, which was good as we were playing to new crowds. We’ve got a hometown festival in the Midlands coming up next Saturday too which will be our warm up so to speak.”

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

Alex Ohm: “That list could go on and on. Kasabian always on puts a mega live show. They always get the crowd buzzing. The Hacienda Classical set would be good to catch too. I like writing with orchestras in mind, and when I first heard The Hacienda Classical, the hairs on my arm stood up. On the day we play, The Killers and Travis are playing, that’ll be a top way to round the weekend up.

Personally, I’m looking forward to catching some of the up and coming bands on the This Feeling with Pirate Studios and Pretty Green stage. It will be good to see The Surrenders, Sugarthief, The Assist, Red Rum Club, Yves, The Seamonsters and too many others to name tear it up.”


Rival Bones

Credit: Rival Bones

Formed in North West England during late 2014, Rival Bones are a raucous rock power duo consisting of James Whitehouse and Chris Thomason. Influenced by bands such as Audioslave, QOTSA, DFA1979 and Rage Against The Machine, Rival Bones began establishing themselves as one of the hottest rock bands of the last decade. Playing shows at the O2 Academy in Liverpool, The Arts Club, and a headlong gig for BBC Introducing in 2016, Rival Bones are a real force to be reckoned with. You can catch this group at This Feeling tent.

How would you describe yourself as an artist/band for those who haven’t heard of you?

Rival Bones: “We were recently described as a ‘stoner crafted wall of sound’, but we think we’re just a heavy, raucous rock band! We’re loud, sweaty, in your face and full of riffs and heavy drums.”

How are you feeling in the build-up to your performance at the Isle of Wight?

Rival Bones: “We’re feeling good! We’ve had a long summer of festivals, and gigs playing Sound City, Live At Leeds, The Great Escape, and we’ll have had around ten days off before we travel to the Isle Of Wight, so we’re really pumped to play it. We’ll also be playing a bunch of new songs, so for us, it’s going to be awesome!”

What sort of preparation do you have as an artist for a festival of this size?

Rival Bones: “Isle of Wight is huge for us, but I think preparation-wise, nothing much will change. We’re constantly rehearsing and refining the set all the time, so we’ll keep up with that. We had a big rehearsal this week of the set we’re going to perform for the Isle Of Wight!”

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

Rival Bones: “Unfortunately, we only get to stay on Friday until about 8 pm as we’re off to InMusic in Croatia the following day! I think we’re definitely going to try and watch Nile Rodgers and Chic  because that guy is a legend!”

Who do you feel should be on the lineup for next year?

Rival Bones: “Other than us!? Hahaha, Isle Of Wight is great because it’s a super-eclectic festival; however, we’ve got to stick to our heavy roots. We’d love to see Death From Above 1979 or Turbowolf on the bill because they’re both amazing!”


Glass Peaks

Credit: Ant Adams Photography

After bursting onto the scene in 2016, Glass Peaks have earned themselves the title of one of the UK’s biggest breakout bands. Their diverse musical palette sees them pen tunes with hook-laden riffs, driving indie beats and gorgeous bass undertones, all tied up with a distinct vocal and harmonies. The band’s 2017 breakout single, ‘I’m Okay’, hit the “Indie List” on Spotify for four weeks catching the attention of listeners everywhere. Glass Peaks will be performing at the This Feeling Tent.

How would you describe yourself as an artist/band for those who haven’t heard of you?

Jake: “Three idiots who write passionate melodic music in a shed in Welling, Kent.”

Grant: “This is always a hard one to answer. I would have to go with if Foals and Radiohead had a baby.”

Alfie: “An angsty teenager who can cut absolute shapes in a funky, funky disco.”

How are you feeling in the build-up to your performance at the Isle of Wight?

Jake: “We are absolutely stoked to play the Isle Of Wight Festival. It’s always been a dream of mine, at age 12 the first album I bought was Jimi Hendrix live at the Isle Of Wight. I played it so much that it wouldn’t play anymore from all the scratches. I actually went to the festival in 2016 and it was amazing. Such a great festival.”

Grant: “Excited! As Jake said, some of our heroes have played this festival, and we’re honoured to have the opportunity to play. Big thanks to the peeps at This Feeling and Pirate Studios also. They’re all great guys, and we aim to smash it out the park!”

Alfie: “Yeah, we’re definitely very excited about this one. Isle Of Wight has a rich history of incredible musical performances. It’ll be nice to get on stage and do our thing.”

What sort of preparation do you have as an artist for a festival of this size?

Jake: “Lots of practice, sorting tracks, booking the van, buying beers, buying a tent, buying beers, sorting the ferry and buying more beer.”

Grant: “Exactly what Jake said. Lots of practice, making sure everything is as smooth as it possibly can be, oh and buying beers.”

Alfie: “Practice, practice, practice! We’re putting a lot of energy and time into perfecting the set and the sound. The admin stuff is also super important, we almost never had any transport because we were so hell-bent on making sure the music was the best it can be!”

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

Jake: “Kasabian, Nile Rogers, Liam Gallagher, Wild Front, Blossoms, Travis, Submariner and The Killers.”

Grant: “The lineup all over the festival is wicked, but I’m looking forward to Travis, Chase and Status, Sheryl Crow and our boys, Submariner.”

Alfie: “Always Chase and Status – legends in the game. I’m excited to see Kara Marni, Depeche Mode and Nile Rodgers and Chic. Gonna be madness.”

Who do you feel should be on the lineup for next year?

Jake: “The 1975, Foals, The Stone Roses, Tears for Fears, Radiohead and Glass Peaks, obviously.”

Alfie: “If all of Jake’s suggestions make next years line up, I will cry little tears of joy. How wonderful.”


Noble Jacks

Credit: Noble Jacks

Noble Jacks, hailing from Brighton, are out to take no prisoners with their fiddle. Leading the charge as they come on with their high-energy footstompin’ rhymes which have taken crowds by storm across the UK since their first debut album was released in Spring 2017. After several performances at major festivals, Noble Jacks has a second album in the pipeline prepared for release next year. Noble Jacks can be seen at the Kashmir Stage this year.

How would you describe yourself as an artist/band for those who haven’t heard of you?

Noble Jacks: “Rootsy folk rock.”

How are you feeling in the build-up to your performance at the Isle of Wight?

Noble Jacks: “Super excited to be playing at the Isle of Wight Festival since it was one of the first major festivals we attended as punters and inspired us to take to the journey towards being a band.”

What sort of preparation do you have as an artist for a festival of this size?

Noble Jacks: “Musically, we want to ensure we have the biggest, most pumping set, especially since we are playing late on the Kashmir stage – it’s gonna be a party! The Kashmir crew/organisers have been really great helping with our travel/logistics, so we just need to make it into the van and across the ferry with a fiddle and a guitar!

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

Noble Jacks: “There are some great artists, but in particular for us, we’re excited about Nile Rodgers, Blossoms, Hudson Taylor, and The Pretty Things.”

Who do you feel should be on the lineup for next year?

Noble Jacks: “Robert Plant and Mumford and Sons. We were lucky enough to meet/hang out with Robert Plant and Mumford and Sons at the AMAUK awards earlier this year where they performed together at the awards as a supergroup (also with Seth Lakeman on fiddle)! It was one of the most incredible things we’ve ever seen.”

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