Another year, another festival season. Now in its second year, ArcTanGent 2014 promises to be bigger and better than ever.
The festival – which boasts an impressive line up from the worlds of math and post rock – takes place at Fernhill Park just outside Bristol. After a healthy attendance last year – with name acts such as Fuck Buttons and 65daysofstatic headlining – it’s safe to say that this year will be nothing short of spectacular.
On Thursday 28th August, Fernhill Park welcomes early attendees with a smattering of last year’s talent, including And So I Watch You From Afar, Three Trapped Tigers, This Town Needs Guns, The Physics House Band and Baby Godzilla.
Now operating on an international scale, ArcTanGent bands confirmed to play the Friday and Saturday include Tera Melos, LITE, I Like Trains, Code in the Clouds, and BLM favourite, Adding Machine. And if that wasn’t enough to whet the appetite, four headline acts have also been confirmed after a series of teasing updates.
Foremost we have Chicagoan post metal giants Russian Circles. Now five albums into their career, the band are nothing short of prolific, and have previously toured with the likes of Boris, Isis, Pelican and gothic swoonstress Chelsea Wolfe. Their latest, ‘Memorial’ – via Sargent House – even features a guest contribution from the latter. They play almost exclusively instrumental songs, which fuse sprawling featherlite delicacies with all the bile of a discordant metallic powerhouse. Their appearance at ArcTanGent is not one for fans or newcomers to miss, especially as it marks their only European festival date this year.
Next we have one of Ireland’s finest, God is an Astronaut. Formed in the early 2000s, the band play a style of post rock familiar to fans of Mogwai and Explosions in the Sky, based on a dynamic of steady builds and earth-shattering tumults. In the deeper recesses of their sound, however, lie traces of meteoric space rock and churning Krautrock agility, which came to the fore on their latest studio LP, ‘Origins’. Their ArcTanGent appearance presents a rare opportunity for Bristolian festival goers and gig enthusiasts to see the band perform in the Bristol area for the first time.
The penultimate headliner appears after popular demand; Texans, This Will Destroy You. As their name suggests, their sound is crushing, monolithic and hugely dense, drawing upon creative dynamics and usage of effects-laden guitar work to build lengthy atmospheric rock symphonies. The result is spectacular and ever so breathtaking. ArcTanGent is their only UK festival appearance this year, so be sure to catch them while you can.
Finally, Mono bring us to four. Hailing from Tokyo, Mono are one of Japan’s finest musical exports. Their music is, much like ArcTanGent’s other three headliners, is lengthy and largely instrumental. Influenced by classical music, minimalism, and experimental tendencies, each song is a soaring masterpiece designed to spirit you away. From their albums alone it is possible to grasp that Mono are a band of sheer grandeur, epic divergence, and mystifying tranquillity. They may not be as relentless as 65daysofstatic, but Mono certainly make for a spellbinding experience and a worthy addition to the ArcTanGent lineup.
Listen to Fuck Buttons’ ‘Brainfreeze’ right here: