1. Janelle Monae (Friday)
Catching this lady in her ascendency is quite a coup for Electric Picnic. Her recent album The ArchAndroid is scoring well deserved rave reviews. With her trademark tuxedo and quiff, expect psychedelic funk, hip-hop, pop, even rock. Watch out for ‘Tightrope’, her collaboration with Big Boi, along with ‘Cold War’ and ‘Faster’.
Janelle Monáe – Tightrope [feat. Big Boi]
2. MNDR (Friday)
New York’s electro-pop duo MNDR, aka Amanda Warner and Pete Wade, are a late but very welcome addition to the Picnic. A self confessed nerd, Warner designed the keyboard rig for the Yeah Yeah Yeah’s last tour. A recent collaboration with Mark Ronson & QTIP on ‘Bang Bang Bang’ was a hit earlier this summer, think Santigold with geek chic.
3. Hurts (Friday)
One of BBC’s Sound of 2010, Manchester duo Hurts are very much inspired by the 80’s with an austere avant-garde image. Not the neon bright fun part of that decade, but the dark, moody, melancholic side circa 1983 when pop took itself too seriously. While debut single ‘Wonderful Life’ is brooding and dark, ‘Better Than Love’ is light and poppy.
4. Freelance Whales (Friday)
Indie-rock outfit Freelance Whales boast an impressive array of instruments, including banjo’s, glockenspiels and mandolins. Debut album Weathervanes drew comparisons with Sufjan Stevens and Broken Social Scene. Rustic and folksy with a twist of electronica, perfect for the chilled environs of Body and Soul.
5. Fever Ray (Sunday)
Fever Ray is Karin Dreijer Andersson also lead singer of The Knife who enthralled a small Oxegen crowd last summer with an affecting and dramatic set, misplaced however in the cavernous dance arena. Her self-titled debut album topped many ‘best of’ lists in 2009. Fever Ray’s Electric Picnic appearance is eagerly anticipated with her enigmatic stage presence and haunting vocal style.