Preview: Beacons Festival 2012

This August YO1 organiser John Drysdale turns to the bigger fish as Yorkshire hails the coming of Beacons Festival. The three day event has been Drysdale’s main project for two years. Burying the disastrous memories of 2011’s flood-related cancellation is this year’s stellar line-up, which has quickly raised the festival’s name out of the ashes and into the top picks of this summer’s music calendar. If 2012 goes to plan, Beacons promises to become the peak of Yorkshire’s musical spectacles. Here’s a look at who’s playing.

Roots Manuva, Mount Kimbie, Willy Mason and Saturday’s big act Wild Beasts make up the handful of long-established names represented at the festival. What dominates the bulk of the line-up are the names of young upstarts and fast rising acts such as Disclosure, Outfit, Kwes, 2:54 and Willis Earl Beal.


Four year old record label Night Slugs have Bok Bok and Jam City playing, joined by big electronic names XXXY, Koreless, Pearson Sound, Julio Bashmore and Montreal producer Lunice, who recently started an exciting collab with Hudson Mohawke as TNGHT . Here’s my personal favourite from two years back.

Oh, and of course he did this. Lest we forget.


For those with a lesser affinity to beats comes a swamp of exciting bands, such as the fast rising Weird Dreams, Mazes, Tall Ships, Errors and Peaking Lights, who recently toured the UK with Circulation favourite Julia Holter and have just released their sophomore album Lucifer. They put together a series of pretty cool mixtapes earlier this year, all available for download via Soundcloud.



Appearances will be made by ex-Circulation cover stars Ghostpoet, Gross Magic and our latest lead interviewee,  Jessie Ware. Her debut album Devotion is set to drop the day after Beacons ends, and it can be guessed that the dales will be the first spot for Ware to air her new material. One of our favourite launch party headliners Theme Park are also scheduled to play, as are ex-interviewees Lanterns On The Lake, Veronica Falls and Oneman (Standard Place). Mix this in with familiar names Freakin, Bos Angeles and Fun Adults and you get a festival that feels 50/50 home and away. That’s an unusual trait.

Final picks. Particular excitement surrounds the advent of a set from Japandroids, whose latest album Celebration Rock already stands as one of the best LP releases of 2012. Then there’s Star Slinger, Au Palais, Maya Jane Coles, off-radar Factory Floor and constant party-pop mainstay Junior Boys. A chance to hear ‘In The Morning’ live is an opportunity to grab by the neck.

Beacons Festival will take place between the 17th-19th August in Skipton, Yorkshire. Weekend tickets are priced at £84.50. For more info and to buy tickets:

Hana Teraie-Wood