After the well-documented summer festival season, November sees the indoor festival season get into full swing with a different indoor spectacle every weekend in Holland. Amsterdam’s London Calling kicks it off next weekend, followed by The Hague’s Rewire and Crossing Border Festivals. All Things Loud will be bringing you coverage of Crossing Border Festival this year, and you can find out who our Top 3 recommendations are by reading on.
COURTNEY BARNETT – Friday, 14 November
Earlier this year, we listed Courtney Barnett amongst a list of artists who you should look out for in 2014. This year has certainly been a good one for the Australian musician, having performed at large festivals around the world this summer, Glastonbury amongst them. Her brand of slacker rock and indie folk may make for a relaxing experience on record, yet her live show is filled with plenty of energy and passion. 2013’s Avant Gardener was one of the standout songs of the year, with its witty lyrics and slacker instrumentation catching the attention of journalists and music fans the world over. Having never played in The Hague before (and having seldom played in Holland), Barnett’s set at Crossing Border is one that can’t be missed.
DRY THE RIVER – Saturday, 15 November
English folk-rockers Dry the River are certainly not your usual Mumford & Sons-esque, acoustic guitar troubadours. Various band members grew up influenced by heavier music, and this influence certainly translates into Dry the River’s emotional music. Standout track No Rest takes an originally calm approach, before pounding drums and extremely emotional falsetto courtesy of Peter Liddle give it a heavier edge. This year the quartet released brand new album Alarms in the Heart to various critical acclaim, and this album has certainly enhanced the emotional intensity of their live show. If you’ve got a spare hour going, check out Dry the River – you’ll thoroughly appreciate it.
GREYLAG – Saturday, 15 November
Although you’ve probably not heard of Portland trio Greylag, you will do one day soon. Sharing its name with a breed of goose, Greylag are one of the most intriguing folk rock bands around today. It’s not exactly as ‘heavy’ as Dry the River or as anthemic as Mumford & Sons, yet it carries you away into a whole new world. November also sees them take on Utrecht’s Le Guess Who Festival the following weekend, but the grand surroundings of The Hague’s Royal Theatre will make it the perfect setting to experience Greylag in. As with Dry the River, you’ll thoroughly appreciate their music once you’ve taken out the time to see them live. The name might not say anything to you, but after their show it will mean so much more.
Alongside the above three recommendations, there are plenty more fantastic acts on the line-up that are worth checking out. If you like it more electronic and less folky, Kwabs is an upcoming artist who’s slowly making a big name for himself. Dutch rockers Daryll-Ann, who have been around a good 25 years, are rounding off a successful year of shows in The Hague this year, whereas fellow Dutch group Clean Pete are only just getting their careers started with their slick brand of folk being well-received. Crossing Border isn’t just home to plenty of exciting new music, though. This year sees the already-established likes of Sharon van Etten and Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore take to the Crossing Border stage.
Tickets are still available for Crossing Border, so get them from this here before they sell out completely! You won’t make a better decision this November.
Picture: Glen Hansard @ Crossing Border Festival 2013, by Maurice Haak.