Preview: Boomtown Fair: Town Centre


Our second district preview for Boomtown’s Chapter 10 “The Machine Cannot Be Stopped” covers the Town Centre, and its eclectic mix of ska, electronic, rap and more. Over to our writer Katie…

The main Town Centre stage is pretty much in the middle of Uptown and always packs in a huge crowd thanks to its relentlessly good performances. The stage itself is set into the façade of a huge town building and, as with all of Boomtown, the attention to detail is on point. Headliners of this stage include the rap-rock phenomenon Limp Bizkit, and The Skatalities (you can guess the genre) both of whom we’ll speak about more in our upcoming headliners preview. Enter Shikari are another big name on the line-up, whose punk electronicore is accompanied by charged lyrics covering political and environmental issues. We know from experience that they know how to get a crowd moving with tracks such as Rabble Rouser from their 2017 album The Spark.

One of the more unusual groups to grace the Town Centre’s stage is Meute: a techno marching band from Hamburg. Their most listened to track is a take on Âme’s Rej which is genius and we can’t wait to see it performed by live by the dozen drummers and horn players that make up the band. Also sure to put on an amazing live performance are Slamboree. Boomtown was made for groups like these, whose fun and theatrical shows are made up from a combination of dance, circus acts and great vocals. Their debut album The Long Game is finally out this year and they will be bringing their blend of Balkan, folk, dubstep and breakbeat (to name a few genres) as the soundtrack to the above madness. The Dub Pistols, an English electronic group with punk, reggae and ska influences founded in 1996 are another outfit who will without doubt fill the town square. Take a listen to Mucky Weekend or the more recent Crazy Diamonds (ft. Too Many T’s) for a taste of what they’ll be bringing to the Hampshire countryside.

An interesting act to look out for is Elvana, which is essentially comprises of an Elvis impersonator performing a mash up of Nirvana and Elvis tracks. One thing is for sure: you won’t have heard anything quite like it before.

As well as this line-up the Town Centre stage is sure to have some more tricks up its sleeve as it has done previous years including pyrotechnics and surprise takeovers by the overarching Boomtown storyline.

Between bands on the main stage you’ll be able to wander round some of the street venues that make up the rest of the square. Try to get yourself a job at the Job Centre whilst listening to some of the dance and electronic DJs performing inside, including the likes of Dr Cryptic and Hadean. Chat to the Boomtown bobbies around the square or who not head into the Inconvenience Superstore to ‘find everything you never wanted!’.

The other stage to make up part of the Town Centre this year is the bandstand, which once made up part of the Mayfair district and is usually found at the top of the main route between Boomtown’s Uptown and Downtown. With this location it’s one of those stages you can easily pass multiple times in a day, but taking a look at who’ll be taking its stage this year it’s clear that it’ll be hard to wander past without stopping to enjoy some of what it has to offer. The Dutch Roots Rising will be bringing their feel-good reggae / hip hop, whilst Malavita!’s Latin beats and soulful vocals will energise anyone around. We also like the sound of New Zealander Matiu Te Huki, who has performed with many of New Zealand’s artists including Fat Freddy’s Drop and will be bringing his soulful Maori-influenced sound to Boomtown for the first time.

If you’ve managed to so far avoid the temptation of getting yourself a ticket for this year’s festival you’ve still got a chance to give in as there as still some resale tickets up for grabs! Follow this link for more details before it’s too late!


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