Festival Review: The Brighton Mix Up 2019

The Brighton Mix Up 2019

The Black Lion, Brighton

Words: Nick Jacques
Photos: Elena Katrina

It was great to be back in Brighton again! I had missed its distinctive layout and large community feel, each trip always provided fun memories in this super friendly seaside town and on this occasion, yet again, Brighton delivered the goods!

After I wandered my way through the charming twists and turns of the famous Lanes, I came upon the Black Lion pub, the temporary home for the Brighton Mix Up festival and die-hard indie-rock cohorts! I was in good company, I could not complain and nor could I about the bands I saw on the day too.

The first band I laid my eyes on came in the shape of Oxfordshire’s Luna Common. Their opening track caressed my bones and I was grateful for it. Their brand of indie lofi-charged rock certainly made me nestle into my new space (by the bar, of course) I hope to cover these guys more in the future. They have a single and new material coming out soon so watch out for them.

If Luna Common made me nestle into my new surroundings then Truro’s The Rezner did everything to throw me off guard and send my head spinning. Their lairy and uncompromising attitude of rumbling bass lines, frenetic drum rolls and razor-sharp vocals bowled me over – and to know they came all the way from Cornwall impressed me all the more! All of sudden Cornwall has added more bite to its pasty! We’d like more please!!

Next up were the much-touted Dutch Mustard. They have been picking up plaudits all over London on their recent excursions and there was a real buzz about the venue now – a big crowd gathered to witness the pick of the bunch from the day in my opinion. Their soring, epic ocean-sized riffs had me grinning so much I was hurting. Their sound is definitely underpinned with a strong appreciation for early smashing pumpkins (Think Gish/Siamese dream era) spliced with early foo fighters on top. They had the crowd in stitches of excitement, much love was being shown for them. Extra mustard for me, please!

Then as the big crowd spilt out of the pub to catch the sea breeze after Dutch Mustard’s crowning set, next came the refreshing sounds of The Pagans S.O.H – another band who had also made a long journey from the black country capital of Birmingham. They delivered a blistering combo of rap, rock and drrrty funk which had me grooving and kept the festival engine room ticking over nicely!

I decided to wander over to the Richmond Pub and catch some of the bands which were on as part of the Alternative Great Escape Festival. Amidst the sweltering heat of the backroom and tiny stage, the heart-felt synth big beats of Drusila really hit a note with their propulsive sounds – the singer literally threw himself into his performance! Compelling stuff! Afterwards, we were treated to a hefty dose 70s power rock vibes from Creeping Jean. Their good-time, carefree attitude definitely hit it on the nose. The attire of the band was pretty impressive – think Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young but with a lot less baggage and a lot younger!!

After this quick pit-stop, I was back over at the Black Lion and the good times just kept on rolling! The Garage Flowers’s set was crammed with character, passion and with a rock ’n’ roll sassiness to boot! They played their hearts out and they probably would have collapsed with the amount of effort they put in. Top set! Definitely watch out for them.

As the moon continued to rise, so did the rousing sounds of Sisteray. They blasted their way through a penetrating set of distinctive heavy indie rock laden with clever socio-political messages. They bring something different to the table and Popped will continue to sing their praises as long as necessary!

The last band I managed to catch were Liverpool upstarts The Cheap Thrills. I was not familiar with them but to my surprise, they conjured up a tight energetic set of synth indie rock which was very pleasing to the ear and was anything but a cheap thrill!

And with this, I signed off and said farewell to this awesome place. Brighton had yet again surpassed my expectations and the good times had just kept on rolling with no signs of stopping. Because we all know that it doesn’t hurt to mix it up now and again.

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    Popped Music has been going since Feb 2010.

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