State’s pick of the quiet, the acoustic, the ‘quintessentially English’, the music for ‘those nursing a sore head after the night before’ and so much more. It’s the folky bands at Electric Picnic.
1. Mumford & Sons (Sunday)
The London folk act are known for the communal vibe of their live shows, and by all accounts their set was one of the highlights of this year’s Oxegen festival. They may not be the hippest band on the bill, but there should be an electric atmosphere for this one.
2. Mountain Man (Saturday)
This female trio have released one of 2010’s most enchanting albums, Made the Harbor. Sounding like a more stripped-back Fleet Foxes, their haunting three-part harmonies are backed by minimal instrumentation, creating an otherworldly, primeval atmosphere.
STATE INTERVENTION #5 – Mountain Man from Bandwidth on Vimeo.
3.Laura Marling (Friday)
Rising from the same London folk scene as Mumford & Sons, the prodigious Marling has already been twice nominated for a Mercury Prize at the tender age of 20. It’s not hard to see why, with her evocative songwriting and nuanced vocals drawing comparison to artists like Joni Mitchell and Beth Orton. Her set at Body & Soul in 2008 last year was a highlight. We expect the same here.
The kind of band that the phrase ‘quintessentially English’ was invented for, Stornoway’s elegant, charming sound nods to artists like Belle & Sebastian and Turin Brakes. Beachcomber’s Windowsill is the debut album they’re touring behind.
5. The Tallest Man on Earth (Sunday)
The adopted name of Swede Kristian Mattson is an apt one: his voice – a powerful, Dylanesque rasp – lends his excellent compositions a larger-than-life feel. Current album The Wild Hunt keeps up his high standards: songs like ‘King of Spain’ and ‘You’re Going Back’ should sound fantastic live.