As Britain’s most reliably brilliant midsize festival, End of the Road has grown up by refusing to expand. Without bland corporate sponsorship or dehumanising big screens flanking its main stages, it is defined by its oddball community, a circus of hedonists, eccentrics and beleaguered parents whose buggies clog paths as toddlers gawp at the peacocks. Hidden sculptures and carved tree trunks give the small site an otherworldly forcefield; the stranger who held forth on avant-garde mixology around the campfire will unfailingly reappear one morning, perhaps during your recuperative stroll around the beekeeping enclosure. It is, for all its twee nooks and middle-class crannies, a winning mix of bacchanalia and earthy mysticism.

Therein lies the EOTR magic, but nobody told Yves Tumor, who prowls the fogged-out Big Top on Friday in a silk stole and thigh-high boots. “I drove down way too many little-ass roads,” Tumor hisses theatrically, turning the sound monitors towards the crowd, “for this shit not to be loud enough.” A primal squall erupts – crashing R&B blown out by industrial beats. After 45 captivating minutes – partly spent thrashing about in the front row – Tumor announces: “Whoever stole my scarf, you better hide that shit because I’m gonna kill you.” They swan off-stage, scooping up the hastily returned scarf along the way. - [The Guardian]

Lauded for its chill vibe, intimate charm, bucolic setting, and excellent curation, UK festival End of the Road held its 2019 edition last weekend (August 29 - September 1) in Larmer Tree Gardens. The lineup was, as usual, killer with performances by Jarvis Cocker, Spiritualized, Courtney Barnett, Michael Kiwanuka, Cass McCombs, Mitski, Deerhunter, Sleaford Mods, Metronomy, Kelly Lee Owens, Baxter Dury, Kate Tempest, Serpentwithfeet, girl in red, Squid (who just released their great new EP today), Westerman, Yves Tumor, Goat Girl, Anna St. Louis, and many more. In addition to the announced schedule, many artists also played secret shows on the grounds, including on the Piano Stage, a miniature living room set hidden amongst a crop of trees. Check out pics from the whole weekend in the gallery above.

End of the Road 2020 happens September 3-6 and reduced price tickets are on sale now.


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