It wouldn’t be Electric Picnic without a trip down memory lane, disco’s greatest band – CHIC make the first ever Irish appearance of their 33-year career. Famed for disco anthems such as Le Freak, Good Times, and Everybody Dance; Chic were inducted into the Dance Music Hall of Fame in 2005 and the legacy of their music has been acknowledged sources as broad as Blondie’s Debbie Harry, Grandmaster Flash and The Smiths’ Johnny Marr. Still led by Nile Rodgers, the 10-piece band maintain its status as the ultimate feelgood party band.
Other acts include one man blues phenomenon, SEASICK STEVE; Belgian mash-up kings 2 MANY DJs who will be playing EP for the first time in three years, honey-voiced songstresss LISA HANNIGAN, US instrumental post-rockers EXPLOSIONS IN THE SKY; ‘80s synth-pop combo ABC; Dublin’s modern trad hero DAMIEN DEMPSEY; the only band who can be described as country techno rockers – ALABAMA 3; acclaimed multi-instrumental singer / songwriter Natasha Khan aka BAT FOR LASHES; Grammy-nominated London chill/downtempo band ZERO 7 who too will release a long-awaited new album this summer; producer, remixer, DJ and all around whizz kid EROL ALKAN; quality hiphop from ROOTS MANUVA and pioneers THE SUGARHILL GANG, political folk punk rocker BILLY BRAGG; enjoy the catchy pop confections of Swedish rising superstar LYKKE LI; the soulful rockabilly of the Liberties’ award-winning IMELDA MAY.
Electric Picnic has always been a festival to tip its hat to history and 2009 is no different. Liverpool’s ECHO & THE BUNNYMEN celebrate the 25th anniversary of their landmark ‘Ocean Rain’ album with a live performance of that record; seminal post-punkers MAGAZINE come to Stradbally play their first Irish shows ever; while Brooklyn veteran all-girl 4 piece E.S.G will show how they produced the grooves and tunes that led from punk to hiphop in their early ‘80s heyday.
For the more electronically-inclined punter, Electric Picnic 2009 will feature the first ever performance in Ireland of MODERAT – the new live project of German electro acts Modeselektor and Apparat, the return of the stomping live show of SIMIAN MOBILE DISCO who are set to release one of thee albums of this year in early summer, Radiohead’s favourite electronic act FOUR TET, the first Irish appearance of dubstep maestros SKREAM & BENGA’s MAGNETIC MAN live show, Parisian hyperactive duo NOZE, Italo disco from HEARTBREAK, the introspective electronic wall of sound of Dublin’s HALFSET and last but most certainly not least, Electric Picnic welcomes a major coup in a rare audiovisual performance by producer CHRIS CUNNINGHAM whose videos for everyone from The Aphex Twin to Madonna need no introduction. This is one of a handful of festivals Chris Cunningham will play across the globe this summer. Chris Cunningham Live is a 55 minute performance, combining original and remixed music and film. It features remixed, unreleased and brand new videos and music, dynamically edited together into a new live piece spread over 3 screens
For those more fond of acoustic guitar-based sounds, EP welcomes cult Americana acts OKKERVIL RIVER, MAGNOLIA ELECTRIC COMPANY, LOW ANTHEM well as VILLAGERS and TUNNG.
Choice-Award winner JAPE returns to Stradbally after a storming show last year, Erland Oye’s underground cult heroes WHITEST BOY ALIVE play their long-awaited first ever Irish show, as do London-based MICACHU & THE SHAPES. New York’s THE WALKMEN bring their distinctly powerful brand of indie rock.
Powerful big bands are represented by classical composer and film score writer MICHAEL NYMAN who will bring a mini-orchestra, Electric Picnic stalwarts DUBLIN GOSPEL CHOIR, the jazz/funk of Will Holland’s QUANTIC SOUL ORCHESTRA, and a very rare full band show of Berlin’s jazz-electro fusion JAZZANOVA.
With lots more acts to be announced in the coming weeks and months the music line-up for Electric Picnic is shaping up to be another cracker,
Of course it’s not just about the music….