Friday, 29 April 2011

Indietracks DJs announced!

(Photo: inuitmonster)

Hello! Hope you’ve been enjoying our recent band announcements, and that all the recent Bank Holidays have helped to get you in the festival mood. We’re already digging out our tents, bunting and sunglasses for Indietracks - hopefully we won’t need those wellies though!

We’re now VERY excited to announce the DJs for Indietracks this year. We’ve got a fantastic range of disco treats for you, from sublime indiepop and 60s girl pop, to top-notch post-punk and new wave. So make sure you bring your dancing shoes – as you’re sure to be shimmying away for most of the weekend!


Scared To Dance (main shed)
A monthly club night in London playing indiepop, post-punk and new wave.

Unpop (marquee)
Edinburgh club night playing C86, twee, jangle pop and generally heavenly pop hits.


Little League (main shed)
Little League is a quarterly club night in Glasgow run by the legendary National Pop League and Butcher Boy's John Hunt. Expect to hear indiepop, C86 and post punk!

Big Pink Cake (marquee)
Big Pink Cake is a club in Bristol (and sometimes not Bristol), dedicated to playing classic and new indiepop, 60's girl groups, the poppier moments of punk, Motown and soul.


Half My Heart Beats (main shed)
Half My Heart Beats is an indiepop club night in Glasgow, who also put on regular gigs in the city.

The Boys Who Couldn't Stop Dreaming (marquee)
An indiepop club night, based in Athens, Greece, who put on their first ''pop n roll'' party two years ago.

For more information about all the DJs, please visit the artists page on our main website.

And finally, just a quick reminder that there’s just one week left to pick up tickets at cheaper early bird prices. Please visit our tickets page before Friday 6 May to buy cheaper tickets.

Thursday, 28 April 2011

Indietracks interview #2: A Little Orchestra

Today we're interviewing A Little Orchestra, a London-based indiepop orchestra led by Monster Bobby of The Pipettes. We're joined by Bobby and violin player Nat, who tell us more about their orchestra....

Hello Nat and Bobby! We've never interviewed an orchestra on the Indietracks blog before. Why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourselves?

Bobby: We're A Little Orchestra, a small instrumental chamber group playing original material, avant-garde classical music, minimalism, pop music, film scores and variously structured improvised pieces, and in the tradition of the Scratch Orchestra, the Portsmouth Sinfonia, and the Boston Pops.

Nat: We have been together for just over a year now, and we all met when Bobby advertised for members to come and join a small pop orchestra. We’ve got around 12 full-time members, although the number does change! Recently we have been playing a lot of indiepop shows and also collaborating with indiepop singers and bands.

What music are you enjoying at the moment?

Bobby: Prokofiev's opera based on Gozzi's The Love of Three Oranges; the midday hip hop throwdown on New Jersey's Hot 97 radio; 'Let's Talk About Sex' by Salt'n'Pepa; FaceCrimes; Les Rita Mitsouko; Benjamin Britten's string quartets; Wagner's Wesendonck-Lieder; Stockhausen's LICHT; Daft Punk's music for Tron Legacy; the revolutionary operas of Madam Mao.

Tell us about an unusual place you've played a gig in the past.

Bobby: I once played a show in a bar in Berlin which was run entirely by French people and everything was upside down. Upside down furniture, discarded keys and bits of crap stuck to the ceiling, a bookshelf, hanging from the ceiling, all of its books stacked along the top of their respective shelves. On stage, the light was so bright in my face that I couldn't see any of the audience!

Nat: As an orchestra, we played in Nettlefold Hall at Norwood Library as part of the Read and Shout festival in March. We weren’t quite playing amongst the book stacks, but it was so lovely to play such an unusual venue.

What's going to be on your compilation tapes as you travel down to Indietracks?

Bobby: Barry Gray's early sixties advertising jingles; Delia Derbyshire and Brian Hodgson's music for The Legend of Hell House; songs from The Backyardigans; songs from the Ghana Special compilation; 'Cool in the Pool' by Holgar Czukay; 'It's not the bullet that kills you - it's the hole' by Laurie Anderson; 'Sacrifice of the Virgin' by Les Baxter; Billie the Vision and the Dancers; Belbury Poly; Vanity 6; Inga Rumpf & I.D. Company; and lots of French disco - Claude Francois, Dalida, etc.

Nat: I take my pre-Indietracks musical preparation very seriously, so probably the Indietracks compilation!

Do you have any exciting plans for the rest of the year?

Bobby: I'm going to Thailand soon, and hopefully I'll finish writing my book too before too long.

Nat: I’m actually getting married the weekend after Indietracks, so I’ve got a pretty exciting summer in store! As an orchestra, we’re playing for How Does it Feel to be Loved? in June, and we’re also hoping to put on our own charity show at the Kilburn Tabernacle before the end of the year. It’s a tin church built to look like the inside of a ship, and the interior is absolutely beautiful.

Do you have any surprises planned for the Indietracks festival?

Bobby: Oh, just the usual laser shows, pyrotechnics, circus acrobats and flying monkeys....

Nat: We’re hoping to invite along some very special indiepop guests, but you’ll have to wait and see! To give you an idea of the sorts of collaborations we've done before, here's a video of us playing with Darren Hayman at the Read and Shout festival.

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the Indietracks festival, and why?

Bobby: I shall be particularly looking forward to seeing Edwyn Collins, whose A Girl Like You was a teenage favourite when I used to stay up listening to Mark and Lard's Radio One graveyard shift long before I fell in love with Orange Juice. Also, I have never failed to gain tremendous enjoyment from watching Suburban Kids With Biblical Names, Chris T-T, Moustache of Insanity and Pocketbooks.

Nat: It's really hard to choose, but I'm a massive Gorky's Zygotic Mynci fan so probably Jonny, although I'm also really excited about seeing The Sweet Nothings and A Fine Day for Sailing.

A Little Orchestra are playing with Electric Soft Parade and Ooberman this Saturday (April 30) at the Amersham Arms in New Cross, in a tribute concert for their late euphonium player Edd, who sadly passed away from an undiagnosed heart condition last year. The concert will raise money for Cardiac Risk in the Young and the Ruby Lambert Trust. Further details are available at We Got Tickets.

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Indietracks interview #1: Simon Fox

Today we're kicking off our series of 2011 Indietracks interviews. Between now and the end of July we'll be chatting with as many of this year's line-up as possible. Last year we interviewed 27 bands, and by a spooky coincidence we also interviewed 27 bands in 2009. Will it be 27 again this year? Stay tuned over the next few months to find out!

Our first interviewee from the Indietracks 'Class of 2011' is Birmingham's Simon Fox. Since disbanding post-rock pinoeers Grover, Simon has quietened down a bit, trading sweeping guitar theatrics for more intimate, acoustic-led songwriting. His songs have a personal, reflective quality, with deceptively rich arrangements, a disarming wit and a flair for creating intimate moods. Simon plays a wide variety of instruments, including guitars, banjo, percussion, keyboards, theremin, mandolin, even occasional brass and woodwind. We can't wait to see him at Indietracks this summer! 

Hi Simon, tell us a little bit about yourself

I'm Simon Fox and I'll be playing solo at the festival. I used to be in Birmingham post-rockers, Grover, and now I do stuff as Fox, World Of Fox, Lonesome Fox, etc. I have released a bunch of singles and a couple of solo albums: "Everything Is For The Best", which is all original material, and "Respect", which is a collection of covers of songs from the 1980s which I released one song a month in 2010. The full CD is now available on Where It's At Is Where You Are Records. I'm pretty self-sufficient, recording all my stuff myself, playing all the parts. Live, I generally play acoustic guitar and banjo, but use effects pedals to build up different moods. You can stream all of my releases from the website:

What music are you enjoying at the moment?

I recently played with label-mates Eux Autres when they came over for a UK tour. Their album Broken Arrow is lovely - spiky, classic indie-pop. Jonny are also great. They've managed to take the best elements of Teenage Fanclub and Gorky's songs and make something really special. They're also hilariously chaotic live.

Tell us about an unusual place you've played a gig in the past.

Grover once played the Oxford Union Debating Hall for a launch of a student magazine. That was pretty strange, playing full-on heavy feedback in the ancient oak panelled hall surrounded by busts of the great and good (and a bunch of slightly disturbed posh kids). When we first started out we also played a Velvet Underground set at Wolverhampton Art Gallery to accompany their pop art exhibition. That was a laugh - playing Sister Ray to polite gallery goers.

Do you have any exciting plans for the rest of the year?

Isn't Indietracks excitement enough? Other than solo gigging and more recording, I also play in James Summerfield's band. For his next album we're going to record it live in the studio, which is something I don't normally do. That'll be good fun - if I can learn my parts properly! I've already had a lot of excitement this year - we recently went on a trip to the southern states of the US. We drove up from New Orleans, through Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee, taking in Clarksdale, Memphis and Nashville en route. It was a real musical odyssey and we got to see some really great live jazz, cajun, blues, country and bluegrass on the way. A real inspiration!

Do any band members have any claims to fame you wish to share?

I took John Peel out for a curry once. Does that count?

Yep, that definitely counts in our book! What's going to be on your compilation tapes as you travel down to Indietracks?

I'm going to do some research and try and pull together a comp of some of the bands playing who I haven't heard before. That'll put me in the mood and give us an idea who to try and see over the weekend. Of course, my girlfriend might just insist on putting Super Furry Animals on, as usual. Not that I'm complaining...

What attracted you to play the Indietracks festival?

Lots of my friends have been before and raved about it. A few friends of mine have also played before (MJ Hibbett, Pete Green) and said how lovely it was. We were planning to come this year as punters anyway, but then you asked me to play! Ta.

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the Indietracks festival, and why?

I love Jeffrey Lewis and always catch him when he plays. We're lucky because he always plays Birmingham (he's friends with Misty's Big Adventure). I saw Edwyn Collins at ATP, backed by Teenage Fanclub. That was a lovely, emotional show. I'm looking froward to seeing him again. I'm a big fan of J-Pop, so I'm going to make sure I check out Sloppy Joe. Sounds right up my street!

Brilliant, thanks Simon - see you in July!

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Another 25 bands added to Indietracks line-up!

We’re delighted to welcome another 25 bands to the Indietracks 2011 line-up, including:

Help Stamp Out Loneliness, whose Krautrock-inspired poptastic debut record is a clear contender for the album of the year.

Milky Wimpshake, Newcastle’s punk pop legends, with three ace albums and numerous fantastic singles under their belts.

Just Handshakes (We’re British), described by Rough Trade as “officially one of the best UK indie pop bands around”, and with a recent single on the legendary Elefant Records.

Band A Part, a charming Spanish indiepop duo, again continuing our festival’s Elefant Records connection.

Amor De Dias, amazing collaboration between The Clientele frontman Alasdair Maclean and Pipas’ Lupe Nunez-Fernandez.

They’re joined by bundles of other fantastic bands. The following have also been added to the main stages:

Guatafan (Spain), A Fine Day For Sailing, Sloppy Joe (Japan), The History of Apple Pie, Horowitz , Frankie Machine, Haiku Salut, Victoria & Jacob, World of Fox, Ace Bushy Striptease, Heroes of the Mexican Independence Movement, Moustache of Insanity, Anguish Sandwich, The Proctors.

And the following will be playing acoustically on the trains:

The Whatevers, Peru, Oxo Foxo, Graeme Elston (Love Parade/Pure/Slipside), Mat Patalano (The Specific Heats)(US), Remi Parson (Electrophonvintage/The Sunny Street).

Headliners already announced for this year’s Indietracks include Edwyn Collins, The Hidden Cameras, Jeffrey Lewis, Suburban Kids With Biblical Names, Jonny, Ringo Deathstarr and Math and Physics Club.

You can find out more about all the bands on the artists page of the Indietracks website.

Early bird tickets!

There are just two weeks left to pick up tickets at cheaper early bird prices.

Weekend tickets are currently available at discount price of £60, and day tickets are available for £32.50. This price is available until Friday 6 May. After this date, weekend tickets will be £65 and day tickets £35. Tickets for children aged 5-14 are £6 for a day ticket and £10 for the weekend. Under-5s get in free.

Tickets are available by calling the railway direct on 01773 747 674 or visiting

Hope to see you in July!

Friday, 15 April 2011

Reminder: applications for workshops

(Photo from the Bunty Collective, Indietracks 2009)

Hi, just a quick reminder that the deadline is approaching for submitting application to run an activity workshop at this year's Indietracks.

In the past we've had songwriting, bunting making, jewellry making, stop-motion animation, quizzes and lots of other activities, some designed for children and others for everyone.

If you'd like to apply, please read our previous post for the full details and then email by 29 April.

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Volunteer at Indietracks 2011

(Sunset dancing at Indietracks 2009. Photo: rainonthelens)

This year we're once again looking for volunteers for the festival weekend. It's a great way to gain experience of working at a festival, it can be really fun and it means you can get in for free! We're looking for volunteers for the following positions:


ll stewards will work shifts and, where required, will be directing festival goers to the site, assisting with ticketing and wristbanding and stewarding the site. Some festival experience is an asset but not necessary.

Stage Assistants

We are looking for enthusiastic individuals with some experience of stage management, either at festival or gig level. This would be an ideal position for an events management student looking for some work experience, or someone with experience who wants to assist in the running of the festival. Each volunteer will work in pairs, managing each stage. This will involve meeting the bands from arrival to the site, helping them find their way around, making sure the bands are ready on time, and collecting their PRS forms.

For both positions, you must be able to arrive on site by midday Friday 29 July for induction and site preparation and be available to work throughout the days on 30 and 31 July. In return you will receive:
*The chance to get involved with a unique festival
*Experience of working at a festival for your CV
*Free entry into the festival
*Free camping if required
*Food and drink vouchers (only for use in the railway buffet)

Please note you will have to make your own way to and from the festival site. A deposit in the form of your camping fee will be payable which will be refunded on successful completion of your duties.

If you'd like to apply, please download an application form from the following link and, once you've completed it, send it to before 30 April 2011.

Volunteers application form

If you would like to apply to work with a friend, mention this in the comments and we’ll do our best to make it happen. Please also let us know if you have volunteered in previous years.

If you have any questions, also e-mail us at this address and we’ll do our best to answer them.

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Edwyn Collins joins the Indietracks 2011 line-up!

(Photo: Tracey Mckenna)

Edwyn Collins, Suburban Kids with Biblical Names and Jonny have been added to the headliners of this year’s Indietracks Festival, held on 29-31 July  in the grounds of a picturesque 1950s steam railway in Derbyshire.

Ivor Novello award-winning Edywn Collins formed the Nu-Sonics in 1976 and later went on to form Orange Juice, who had a Number 8 hit with Rip It Up. Collins released A Girl Like You in 1994, which was a hit in both the UK and the US. Losing Sleep, the first album Edwyn recorded following his double brain haemorrhage in 2005, was released in September last year. Whilst making the record, he collaborated with Johnny Marr, Roddy Frame and members of The Cribs, Franz Ferdinand, The Magic Numbers and The Drums.

Jonny are made up of Norman Blake (Teenage Fanclub) and Euros Childs (Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci). The pair first collaborated on Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci’s “How I Long to Feel That Summer in My Heart” in 2001 before meeting up in 2006 at Norman’s house in Glasgow to record some songs. Their self-titled debut album, which was released earlier this year, finds the perfect balance between Childs’ whimsical wit and Blake’s exquisite harmonies.

Swedish indiepop band Suburban Kids with Biblical Names, consisting of Johan Hedberg and Peter Gunnarson, formed in December 2003. Since then, they have released one album and three EPs on Labrador Records and have been described as “lush folk pop” by the NME, with “catchy, clever and coolly complex” songs.

Other bands announced today are Butcher Boy, Withered Hand, Pocketbooks, Ringo Deathstarr, Chris T-T, A Little Orchestra, Dignan Porch, The Bumblebees and Papa Topo. All bands are from the UK apart Ringo Deathstarr, who hail from Texas, and Papa Topo, who are from Mallorca.

Also among the headliners at this year’s Indietracks are The Hidden Cameras, Jeffrey Lewis and Math and Physics Club.

Further bands will be announced shortly.

Early bird tickets!

Weekend tickets are now available at a cheaper early bird discount price of £60, and day tickets are available for £32.50. This price is available until Friday 6 May. After this date, weekend tickets will be £65 and day tickets £35. Tickets for children aged 5-14 are £6 for a day ticket and £10 for the weekend. Under-5s get in free.

Tickets are available by calling the railway direct on 01773 747 674 or visiting

More bands to be announced this evening...

(Photo: Photojonny)

Just a very quick post to say that we'll be announcing some more Indietracks 2011 bands, including a few more headliners, at 7pm today (Thursday 7 April). Please pop back here at 7pm!

Thanks very much to everyone who's picked up an early bird ticket so far! Don't forget, these cheaper early bird tickets are available until Friday 6 May. To buy tickets, please visit the Midland Railway tickets page.