Arts and Entertainment

Festivals can be challenging enough considering summer weather in Britain, but they're even trickier to enjoy with a toddler in tow, as David Taylor found out...

Festivals: Warming to the power of the summer’s sun

Many festivals are taking steps to become more eco-friendly. Elisa Bray reports on the trendsetters

Festival themes: show me the way to the cosmodome

From fantasy to philosophy, there’s much more to today’s festivals than bands, beer and burgers, as Nick Hasted discovers

Music & Me: When Saints Go Machine

When Saints Go Machine produce ice-cool shimmering pop that belies their tongue- in-cheek moniker. Signed to hip dance label !K7 records, expect to hear a lot more of the Danish foursome’s stunning songs this summer. Nikolaj Manuel Vonsild took time out to answer our questions.

Music & Me: Bibio

Bibio aka producer Stephen Wilkinson creates the kind of lush, heart-tugging melodies you’re sure you’ve heard somewhere before. Indeed, the gorgeous “Lovers’ Carvings” from his last album is that catchy hum-along summer -drenched song that lights up the Kindle TV advert.

Lykke Li, New Trinity Centre, Bristol

The dry ice, ominous synth and reverberating bass that is the prelude to Lykke Li’s stage entrance suggests that she has been taking notes from fellow Swede Fever Ray on ‘How to Spook An Audience’. However, she stops short of the stuffed bear's head approach of her contemporary and instead opts for a less disturbing and more flattering black kimono that gives the impression of Lykke Li as a trainee ninja.

Badly Drawn Boy, Travelling Band and guests, Union Chapel, London

“Hey, I can do this after all,” says a grinning Damon Gough – more popularly known as Badly Drawn Boy – as he basks in the applause of an appreciative Union Chapel crowd towards the end of this feelgood-fuelled charity gig. “F*ck LA.” There’s a roar of laughter from the pews. The evening is a validation for Gough, who had a much-publicised meltdown at the Troubadour Club in Los Angeles last December, threatening to fight an unruly crowd and then publicly quitting the music business (“I’m never playing live again - this has been a disaster,” he said).

Music & Me: Carrie Mac

Rising soul pop star Carrie Mac gives us the skinny on her favourite tunes, pop idols... and Jedward.

Music & Me: Younger Brother

Younger Brother began life as an electronica side project of psytrance producers Simon Posford (aka Hallucinogen) and Benji Vaughan (Prometheus) but without the full-on bpm of their usual dancefloor fare. Rather than rely on their sample-heavy, synthesized sounds, the band has instead organically evolved into a live show that fuses together their trademark sonic soundscapes with real bass, drums, guitars and the soaring vocals of Ruu Campbell. It’s a collaboration that works well – and although new album Vaccine might at first alienate fans more used to the beats and beeps incarnation of the band on their first album A Flock of Bleeps, the album looks set to gain more fans than those who fall by the wayside. Change is a good thing folks – it never hurt Bob Dylan after all.

Music & Me: Breakage

Breakage (James Boyle to his mum) drops the kind of bass heavy D’n’B meets breaks beats that hits you square in the chest. This producer du jour’s tracks have now been voted “Hottest Record in the World” five times in a row by Zane Lowe. He took time out from hitting chests and wooing Lowes to answer a few of our questions...

A Month In Music: February

Spring might not yet have sprung but at least the desolate month of January has finally been laid to rest. Forget about the freezing weather – the post-New Year hangover period is never the best time for bands to get out on the road, and labels aren’t exactly falling over themselves to release their prize gems to a partied-out public. Three cheers for February then.

Music & Me: The Shoes

Guillaume from Gallic duo The Shoes takes time out from the band’s January tour to answer a few questions for Music Magazine.

Music & Me: Kisses

Sun-splashed LA-based electro duo (and couple) Kisses sound a little like Hot Chip if they’d jumped in the Tardis to jam with late Eighties New Order alongside Talking Heads’ guitar. Listen out for them on a cool dancefloor near you.

Music & Me: Dave i.d.

Genre-mashing post punk meets ambient artist Dave i.d. takes time out from recording his debut album to talk to Music Magazine.

Music & Me: Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs

Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs – or TEED to those in the know – is the brainchild of one Orlando Higginbottom, the on-the-button producer of the moment who serves up a veritable smorgasbord of cutting-edge bleeps and beats.

Music & Me: Fred Ruddick, 6ix Toys

6ix Toys are a funk-laced seven-piece band based in Liverpool. Check out their eponymous debut album to hear why they are rapidly gaining acclaim as one of the hottest acts around.

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