Monday, 12 March 2012

The Silent Festival: ATP Jeff Mangum

Take a look at that line-up and you will notice some of music's biggest alternative artists. We have 90s indie giants and 80s post punk stars performing on the same stage - modern composers and eclectic artists from all fields of music ranging from (Beefhearts’) The Magic Band to the sweet folk music of Joanna Newsom. Just looking at the line-up makes me want to go, no matter what, it can't be missed. It's not always that simple when the festival is located in Somerset. Yes, Minehead's very own Butlins, which has been the location for music’s biggest alternative names over the years; you wouldn't have thought it. All year round it's a tacky town for sunbathers craving for fake beaches and overpriced cider, but during ATP, It's surreal. 

This was a three day festival with a capacity of 5,500. I understand the differences between ATP: Jeff Mangum and say... Glastonbury. These huge festivals have commercial artists leading the bill, with the eclectic supply of P4K gravy train artists playing on smaller stages. ATP is quite simply an intimate festival for the serious music listener. Not many people could recognise this line-up, it may seem silly to me and you, but how many people do you know listen to The Apples In Stereo or Half Japanese... The Raincoats, Scratch Acid, The Music Tapes, or Jeff Mangum???

So I'm frustrated from the lack of coverage. The festival has now passed and people have returned to their everyday lives, spreading the good word to anybody they see fit. The coverage has been non-existent. I managed to find one review (Which didn't even mention Jeff Mangum.) Stereogum posted a story this morning which read; "Over the weekend, the Jeff Mangum-curated ATP festival went down in Butlins, Minehead, UK, and as a result there’s some footage out there from the likes of Joanna Newsom, Low, and the Fall. We’ll update as necessary". 'as necessary'... AS NECESSARY!!

I'm annoyed that none of the big players have sent reporters or cameras to this festival. Pitchfork especially should be covering this. At least write a story, Jeff Mangum is here for god’s sake. It's not every day you can see Low, Joanna Newsom, and Boredoms on the same night. Then sleep and see Scratch Acid, The Magnetic Fields, and Jeff Mangum the next day. I was expecting an array of reviews, but instead I had to read the four comments on the festival page. Music journalists, where are you... Shocking. 
~Eddie Gibson


  1. that's pretty gay i'm with ya buddy

  2. Completely agree. I was looking forward to getting back and reading through some of the online reviews to see what others made of the event (amazing of course)... and there has been pretty much nothing!! I too was expecting the music press to not only be on this but be a little bit excited. All I could find were the brief reviews on Where was everyone!?


    Here's one, and it was emailed to me by Jad.

    John S

  4. If Coldplay was on the bill...

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