The Manx Sound Exchange: Festival’s acoustic line-up

Geoff Murphy 'Uber Room'Craig's Heartstrong Foundation charity night at Paramount night club February 11, 2011''

Geoff Murphy 'Uber Room'Craig's Heartstrong Foundation charity night at Paramount night club February 11, 2011''

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AMID the excitement of The Charlatans joining the list of impressive main stage acts converging on the island for The Garden Party in July, let us take a moment to look at the home-grown acts set to feature over the festival weekend.

New names were announced last week, and now the line-up looks to be more or less finalised, so it is with tentative certainty we can sift through who’s who.

Opening the festival on the PokerStars Main Stage on Friday, July 6 are those crazy surfers Mr Eliminator and The Deadly Vipers, followed by pop punkers This Years Winner Is... From there the main stage roster is made up of visiting acts (albeit some with strong Manx links like Swound! and Yashin), so we look to the new addition - the Jabberwocky Acoustic Stage for our local fix.

Matt Creer gets things started, then the dreamy harp of Erika Kelly, the youthful indie punch of The Cosmos, the hooky synth rock of Native, the energetic harmonies of Panicland, a solo slot from Uber Room’s Geoff Murphy, the djembe-driven beats of Hoodoo Nation and finishing off is the groove and interplay of Tiger Years. A stonking line-up, even if I do say so myself.

Honoured with main stage slots at the start of play on the Saturday is supercharged bluesman Simon Campbell, followed by the super-tight RedGap, and the big, multi-layered sound of Truman Falls.

Over we go again to the acoustic stage for the rest of the day’s local action (and I think this is the correct running order...) starting with the foot-stomping brilliance of Nick Barlow, 12 Miles Out man Chris Winchester, singer songwriter Clara Barker, the golden vocal chords of Joey Wilde, the good-time funky phrases of Teresa Mcnulty, the mesmerisingly intricate instrumental folk of Strengyn, an acoustic version of stalwarts The GASP, and the indie anthems of Chris Gray, before the trio of Christine Collister, Anna Goldsmith and Christy DeHaven lock ambient melodic horns at the top of the bill.

So, despite big names and visiting bands occupying the chunk of main stage slots, there is actually more local music on offer than last year, courtesy of the addition of the acoustic tent. And as experienced festival heads will know; you can’t beat a good tent for atmosphere.

Lee Brooks’ ramblings on the rumblings of the island’s music scene. You can help support the scene by contacting Lee at or on 695674 with Manx music news, reviews and photos

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