Before you venture into the woods, get the low-down on the artists you need to be looking out for.
Farr Festival returns to the idyllic setting of Hertfordshire’s Bygrave Woods this July for what is shaping up to be its best year yet. The tight-knit party welcomes a stellar run of DJs and live acts encompassing everything from the classic Chicago house of Mike Dunn to the off-kilter dance floor jams of 1080p’s Project Pablo. There’s also the small case of a six hour, back-to-back set courtesy of Joy Orbison, Ben UFO and Midland.
Yet with so many quality acts colliding, we thought we’d make life easier for you when July 14th rolls around. When all’s said and done, you’ll be pleased you checked out at least one of the below artists. Through scorched techno, squelching acid live shows, and taut drum and bass assaults, here’s our top five picks for the weekend.
1. Paranoid London – 16th July, Adventures In Success
Simply put, one of the most electrifying live acts around today. We all know by now that the duo don’t do press or marketing. What really matters is the sheer energy these purists bring to a live show. Armed with a cluster of analogue gear, Quinn Whalley and Gerardo Delgado can set fire to any party with their gritty acid workouts, and the pair’s set at Farr will no doubt see them do the same. In fact, it’s their no bullshit approach that earned them our best live act of 2015. Highly recommended.
2. Young Marco – 16th July, Adventures In Success
Revered equally as a producer and DJ, Dutch talent Young Marco’s mercurial selections often encompass a motley of Balearic, new age, jacking house and cosmic disco. His 2014 LP Biology was a brilliant effort that coalesced his wildly varied tastes, informed by years of digging. And though he’s a self-confessed non-clubber, he’s most at home when simply “making people dance” – and it shows. Never one to fall back on hackneyed crowd pleasers, Marco takes his audience on a journey through timeless obscurities and sounds you’re unlikely to hear elsewhere. What else are DJs for?
3. Helena Hauff – 16th July, Adventures In Success
It’s become increasingly banal to tie Helena Hauff’s abilities as a DJ in with her Birds and Other Instruments residency at Hamburg’s Golden Pudel. Whilst her time there has undoubtedly set a particular deftness upon her performances, Hauff can tear a crowd apart just about anywhere. Skirting rugged EBM, bare-bones techno, or screeching acid, the Werk Discs artist has proved to be one of electronic music’s most exciting prospects in recent years. Re-visit some of her favourite YouTube videos for an idea of how wide-ranging her taste is.
4. Funkineven – 15th July, Hidden Palace
Steven Julien, aka Funkineven, first made waves in 2009 with his ever-so-funky debut record Kleer. Going on to hold close ties with the Eglo family and release music via his own Apron Records, the west Londoner has crafted a sound that blends analogue house, futuristic funk and classic electro effortlessly. It’s also seen him collaborate with fellow soul explorers Kyle Hall, Jay Daniel and Seven Davis Jr. His DJ sets are no different, with emphasis on imperfect rhythms and an ability to change direction when necessary. The only common thread is the underlying soul of his playful approach to the dance floor.
5. dBridge – 15th July, This Must Be The Place
A legend in the game, dBridge has been at the heart of the drum and bass scene since the mid-’90s, from his time as Future Forces and member of legendary group Bad Company, to the hugely influential club night/label Autonomic that he co-ran with fellow heavyweights Instra:mental. With solo releases for the likes of Metalheadz, Hotflush and his own label Exit Records, dBridge continues to break the mould and exceed expectations. His DJ set at Farr Festival promises to be a winner, as we can expect further explorations in lethal bass.
Farr Festival comes to Bygrave Woods, Hertfordshire, 14 – 16 July. More info and tickets available here.
Featured image (L-R): Funkineven (India Rose & Christina Paik), Paranoid London, Helena Hauff (Katja Ruge)