Bearded Theory festival – day two – Saturday

Overnight rain had left parts of the festival site rather muddy, so conditions underfoot weren’t great in a couple of the busy places, but generally the site was still fine and easy to get around.


zombieZombie met girl are first up on the main stage.  With a rock/punk sound it’s a good choice to wake the crowd up and get them ready for a day of music.

Ahab came next.  A british band playing Americana they have a great sound – part folk, part rock, part country, with all the influences merging into a very listenable sound. It’s a great set that goes down well with the crowd despite the dull cold weather.


Citizen fish came next.  While they have vocals and guitar that you’d describe as punk, they also have a trumpet and trombone which give more of a Ska feel to the music.  It’s a great combination and they draw a large crowd to enjoy their set.

citizen fish

ruts dcRuts DC were formed from the rhythm section and guitarist of punk band The Ruts.  Ruts DC though aren’t really a punk band – instead they play more Reggae along with some punk.  It’s an interesting combination but one that works well, and coming straight after the Ska/Punk mix of Citizen fish it goes down very well with load of people in the crowd dancing.

Macka B & the reggae roots band came next.  As the name suggests, it’s reggae music from British rastafarian Macka B and his band.  He starts the set by giving thanks to Haile Selassie – the first of many references to rastarians during the set.  It’s a set that goes down very well with the crowd, and is another example of the diversity of the lineup here at Bearded Theory – today we’ve got Rock’n’Roll, Folk, Punk, Reggae, Americana and more – and that’s just the main stage – when you look at the smaller stages as well then there’s even more variety.

macka b

quireboys2The Quireboys came next.  They’re a band that I’ve seen quite a few times over the years, and they’re always good, and tonight is no exception.  Taking to the stage with drinks in hand, The Quireboys are here to party.  Singer Spike is in characteristic fine form, swinging his mic stand around or throwing it up in the air and never failing to catch it before it hits the stage on the way down.  They put in a great set including their new single (Too much of a good thing) which Spike tells the crowd has just been released that week, as well as classic hits including ‘7 o’clock’, ‘Sex party’ and ‘There she goes again’.  Amazingly given how good their set is, Spike tells the crowd that their drummer tonight has never played with them before, and indeed hadn’t even heard one of the songs before – that’s an impressive stand in to be able to play songs so well first time, but as he’s a member of Squeeze then it’s understandable that he’s talented.  They went down very well with the crowd with plenty of people watching their set and lots of people dancing too.


Seth Lakeman came next with quite a change of pace.  Instead of the rock’n’roll of The Quireboys, we got some slower folk music.  Seth Lakeman sings and plays violin, guitar and other instruments, and is backed up by three other musicians.  It’s a set that mixes slow ballad-like songs with more energetic faster paced songs.  It’s a great set, but for me it just felt a little flat after The Quireboys, but he still went down very well with the crowd.


Tonights headliners were Asian dub foundation.  It’s very bass heavy and a mix of rock, electronica and Asian music – with quite a strong dance feel to it. It’s clearly a popular choice with the crowd, but just didn’t appeal to me in the slightest I’m afraid.


As with the other days, there was entertainment all around the site, including a can-can


..and of course lots of festival goers dressed up..


About Ant May

I spend half my life at gigs or festivals and the other half writing the reviews and editing photos, and somehow find time for a full time job too. Who needs sleep - I've got coffee.