Festival season’s not over yet. Some of rock’s biggest names (and some of our favourite newbies) take over Merthyr Tydfil this weekend. Here’s why you should be going…
So you thought festival season was over? Well, it is… almost. But, before you go putting your wellies away at the back of the wardrobe for another year, there’s the small matter of Merthyr Rock this weekend. Packed full of all our favourite British bands (see: Young Guns, The Blackout, Skindred, Funeral For A Friend and a shedload more), it’s set to be the perfect way to book-end the summer. Here are our top 10 reasons to get your arse to Cyfarthfa Park in Merthyr Tydfil this weekend…
1. IT’S THE BLACKOUT’S HOMECOMING
Ever heard the phrase ‘We’re The Blackout from Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales’ uttered from a certain Mr Sean Smith’s mouth? No? Then you probably haven’t ever seen this lot live, as he says it every bloody time (he’s a man of routine, our Sean). As they take to the stage on Sunday evening, you can bet they’ll be given a heroes welcome return to their hometown after a blistering summer, and they’ll undoubtedly deliver a headlining set to match.
2. IT COULD BE THE START OF SOMETHING BIG
Here’s a fact for you: Reading festival started in the summer of 1961 to just a few thousand people. In 2011, Merthyr Rock’s inaugral weekend has the potential to kick-start something just as big. No, really, it does. In 40 years time, when you’re asking for a lift in your mate’s hovercar to South Wales for the biggest festival of the summer, don’t say we didn’t warn you…
3. FUNERAL FOR A FRIEND WILL BRING THE PARTY
Have we mentioned that Funeral For A Friend have featured in more issues of Rock Sound than any other band, ever? We have? Well… good. As you can probably guess, we’re big FFAF fans and with their live performance tighter than ever (Hevy, anyone?), expect greatness from the boys this weekend.
4. OCEAN COLOUR SCENE HAVE AT LEAST TWO SONGS YOU KNOW
There’s no denying ‘The River Boat Song’ and ‘The Day We Caught The Train’ are utter belters. Get your mates around your, a beer in hand and have a good old sing song. They’ll probably play some other songs, too.
5. FIREWORKS. EVERYBODY LOVES FIREWORKS.
The festivities at Merthyr actually start on the Friday night, and they’ve got some treats in store for the early arrivals. Expect a mahoosive fireworks display to ring in the weekend, and some bad-ass stunts by the Bolddog FMX team to accompany them. Yes please.
6. DISCOVER SOME OF THE BEST NEW UK BANDS
Aside from the big guns, there are a whole host of fantastic up-and-coming acts across the weekend that Rock Sound fully endorses. Save Your Breath, Spycatcher, Straight Lines, Tiger Please, Crossbreaker and more are all taking to the stage in Merthyr over the next couple of days, so if you know what’s good for you (which, if you’ve read this far, we’ll assume you do), get there as the doors open to catch them all.
7. GOLDIE LOOKIN' CHAIN WILL BE THERE
Which means we have an excuse to post this:
8. IT MIGHT BE NEW, BUT IT’S PUT ON BY PROS
Merthyr Rock has been put together by the rather excellent people at Hay Festivals. Although MR itself is only in its first year, the good folk at Hay Festivals have been putting on fests of all shapes and sizes across the globe over the last decade: from Nairobi to Beirut to Belfast to The Maldives. Expect Merthyr Rock to be a super-organised and super exciting weekend put on by a gang of pros.
9. IT’S CHEAP AS CHIPS
A weekend ticket for Merthyr Rock costs just £45. The festival runs over three days. That’s less than £1 per hour of unmitigated FUNTIMES.
10. IF DONNY CAN DO IT…
Back in 2007, Donny Osmond played in front of 15,000 people at Cyfarthfa Park in heavy rain and mud. South Wales has been trying to shake the memory ever since. Let's give Merthyr something better to remember this weekend. Get bloody involved! Tickets can be purchased by clicking on the link below the line-up. We'll see you down the front...