Kicking off today (12 November) The End Festival takes place in Crouch End, North London over ten whole days (22 November, including a multi venue urban festival in the middle on Friday and Saturday (13, 14) in the middle. Organiser Howard Monk presents some personal picks from this year's bill in playlist form.
Howe Gelb – Vortexas (pictured) "Listening to Howe or Giant Sand feels so laid back. You feel like you know him by listening. I wanted to pick the salvation of egg, which is an old favourite. But this one is super chilled too. Howe plays solo on the piano on Monday 16 and Tuesday 17 Nov in the tiny recording studio The Crypt."
The Mae Trio - Buzzcut Season "Apparently this is a cover of some other antipodean lass I haven't heard of. The Mae Trio are an award winning Melbourne folk act who have loads of trad credibility as well as hints of This is the Kit or Rachael Dadd. Very inventive and brilliant. They play Mon 16 Downstairs at The King's Head."
Lowpines – Call off the Hunt "One of my absolute favourite new bands, Lowpines bring a well crafted sound (their setup is very nice - old amps and stuff). It reminded me of Great Lake Swimmers when I first heard it. They feature Lyla Foy among their number too. Very nice indeed. They're playing Thu 12 Nov at Earl Haig Hall."
R+R – Dolphins "Another Cover. The Magic Number is local to the area and has a project in the offing with Salford lass Ren Harvieu. We get a sneak peak on Thu 19 Nov. There's nothing online of any quality so here's Romeo doing Dolphins."
Ylja – Sævindur "One thing I love about not knowing what on earth a band is singing about is that it just makes you listen to the whole song. The whole performance. And you don't have to care what the content is. I'd love to know, of course, but this band (who are playing a few times over the weekend) really hit the spot."
Markers – Civil Twilight "Markers are a guitar duo from London comprising of Jason Carty and Jodie Cox. Collectively, their musical history has seen them as founding members and collaborators with the likes of Narrows, Geiger Counter, Foe, Exes, Rohame, Art of Burning Water and Earth. Creating music without voice or rhythm section leaves them very exposed, focusing attention on how each note is wrung or coaxed for optimum emotional expression, and relying heavily on tone, dexterity and structuring. (That's their description. I just think this is sparse and beautiful. Again, using awesome old amps helps - and being amazing players)."
The Wave Pictures – Spagetti "The Wave pictures are one of the finest bands in the UK. Ever inventive, funny, and brilliant players. Check this video out! They play Saturday 14 at Hornsey Town Hall. Superb stuff. Very excited to have them!"
Emma Pollock – Paper and Glue "Emma is a Scottish indie VIP. Founder member of The Delgados, and also of Chemikal Underground records. She has a new record out in the new year and we're very glad to have her down for a sneak peek at the new stuff. She plays Sunday 15 at Earl Haig Hall."
Tom Dunne – Storm "We're very grateful to have a partnership with BIMM London music school this year, and we get to choose from a bunch of their hungry and talented acts. This is one of my favourites to be sure. Very moody and quietly groovy. And it's called Storm. There's another act on the bill from BIMM London, called Storme. You couldn't make it up right?"
Collectress – Spell "They're awesome. Really stunning to watch and amazing players and arrangers who collaborate with all manner of folks like Bat for Lashes, Penguin Café, Philip Selway (Radiohead), Icarus, Ron Caines (East of Eden), Mary Hampton, Patrick Wolf. Their music treads a joyful line between the intricate and organic, with a nod to everyone from Philip Glass to Bach to John Adams, improvisors like The Necks to lo-fi chamber groups such as Rachels. They play Sunday 22 as part of an "end of The End weird folk all dayer"
For more, including the full line-up and ticket news, head to Theendfestival.london.