Preview: The Big Chill, Eastnor Castle Deer Park, Ledbury
Cohen will be king of the castle
Tuesday 08 April 2008
The 1980s dance-music pioneers Bomb the Bass return 14 years after their last album and 20 years after their last live performance to air new material at August's Big Chill festival in the Malvern hills. The line-up for the annual multimedia jamboree – for which The Independent is a media partner – is headed up this year by another famously reclusive artist, the cult Canadian singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen, who hasn't toured for 15 years.
The Big Chill has branched out this year to include guest curators including the ICA, the BFI, Underbelly and The Mighty Boosh, who will bring art, music, film, comedy, live entertainment and youth workshops to the festival.
Tim Simenon, the record producer behind Bomb the Bass, couldn't be more excited about his return to the public realm. "It is liberating because it has been so long," he says. The Bomb the Bass show will include an audio-visual show featuring Simenon's co-producers on the new album, Future Chaos, VJ Valerio and DJ Claudio from Switzerland, and the singer Paul Conboy. "We will be playing versions of new songs and reworkings of old Bomb the Bass classics like"Beat Dis", "Megablast" and "Bug Powder Dust," he says.
Future Chaos is a different cocktail from previous Bomb the Bass albums, with collaborations with rock singers such as Mark Lanegan. "It's a Minimoog album withvocals on it," says Simenon. "I suppose the key element is its simplicity."
Other highlights of the festival include the DJ Norman Jay, the dub/reggae seven-piece Fat Freddy's Drop, the Washington DC-based dance duo Thievery Corporation and the legendary Manchester punk band the Buzzcocks.
Also performing are the comedian Bill Bailey, the performance poet and musician John Hegley and the maverick composer John Metcalfe. A collaboration between the British electronic duo Plaid and Wayne McGregor's dance company, Random Dance, should also be a high point.
1 to 3 August (020-7685 0525; www.bigchill.net)
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