Bumper line-up of bands for this year’s Indietracks festival

British Sea Power, Honeyblood, The Lovely Eggs, Dream Wife, Girl Ray and Sacred Paws are among 35 artists confirmed for this year’s Indietracks festival.

The festival takes place on the weekend of July 27-29 at the picturesque Midland Railway, based at Butterley, near Ripley.

It’s a celebration of independent, creative and DIY pop music, with bands playing across the heritage steam railway site, including its main outdoor stage, in a locomotive shed, a tin tabernacle and on the steam trains themselves. Early bird tickets are now available until Sunday May 13.

The above artists are joined by Darren Hayman (playing Breaking God’s Heart), Even As We Speak, Haiku Salut, Onsind, The Smittens, Anna Burch, Boyracer, Night Flowers and Eureka California.

Plus, the following bands are also joining the bill: Happy Accidents, Let’s Whisper, Wolf Girl, Just Blankets, Dream Nails, Mikey Collins, Sink Ya Teeth, Tugboat Captain, The Baby Seals, Life Model, Cat Apostrophe, Strange New Places, Melenas, Panic Pocket, French Boutik, Ghum, Rebecka Reinhard, Tekla, Whitelands and The Sunset Beach Hut.

Around 20 more artists and DJs will be added to the bill shortly.

British Sea Power are based in Brighton, and their members live in Sussex, Kendal and on the Isle Of Skye.

Their music has won them some remarkable admirers, including Lou Reed, David Bowie, London’s National Maritime Museum and Doctor Who’s Peter Capaldi, who wrote in his foreword for the reissue of the band’s 2003 debut album: “BSP’s songs bring you the bite of the wind, the fury of the sea, and music that is simply exhilarating.”

They’ve played atop the Great Wall Of China, at the CERN atom-research labs and beside the diplodocus skeleton at London’s Natural History Museum. They’ve played at London’s Czech Embassy and beneath the big astronomical dish at Jodrell Bank. They’ve played on ships at sea, deep inside Cornish slate mines and set up their own micro-festival at the Tan Hill Inn, the most elevated pub in Britain.

BSP’s debut album, The Decline Of British Sea Power, swings boldly from 30-second choral swoons to the 14-minute epic Lately. Since then, they’ve released a series of wildly imaginative albums, including sweeping film instrumentals, neat electronic pop, epic brass band collaborations, and celebratory odes to Eastern European migration.

Most recently, in 2017, they released their first new studio album in four years. ‘Let The Dancers Inherit The Party’ is a streamlined blast of modernist rock music now infused with more pop immediacy than ever before in the band’s history.

For frontwoman Stina Tweeddale, the title of Honeyblood’s second album, Babes Never Die, came from somewhere close to her heart, literally. “I have those words tattooed on my ribs,” she smiles. “I guess you could call it a war cry; to have the faith to never let yourself be defeated.”

“The title is my own mantra,” Stina explains of the follow-up to their eponymous 2014 debut, which landed in many of the year’s most revered Best Of lists, with perfect score reviews from everyone from NME to DIY. But if the Glasgow band - Stina, alongside drummer Cat Myers - has created anything of a signature atmosphere, it’s one that’s as playful as it is impassioned.

The band that burst forth from Glasgow’s DIY underground scene just a few years ago, recording cassette tape releases and hosting ad-hoc parties in disused hairdressers is still in tact. But the evolution that’s taken place is undeniable. Together they’ve managed to brilliantly capture the duo’s notorious live energy that over the past two years has shared stages all round the globe with the likes of Belle And Sebastian, Courtney Barnett and more.

For a while now Honeyblood have been talked about as one of the most exciting new UK bands, but you get the feeling that before long they’ll be simply be known as one of the most important bands around.

Tickets are now available at an early bird discount price of £72 (weekend) and £39 (day), excluding booking fees. These cheaper prices are available until 9pm on Sunday, May 13. After this date, prices will be £79 (weekend) and £41 (day). Weekend tickets for children aged 5-15 are £10, or £6 for a day ticket. Children under five get in free. Tickets are available by calling the railway directly on 01773 747 674 during office hours or by visiting: http://www.indietracks.co.uk/tickets/

Around 50 artists from across the globe will be playing across four stages at Indietracks, and the festival will also host a range of art and craft workshops and a selection of discos after the bands finish.

This is the 12th annual Indietracks festival, which takes place at the Midland Railway in Ripley, in the heart of the Derbyshire countryside. The site houses a whole range of lovingly restored steam diesels and locomotives. Festival goers are able to have unlimited rides on the steam railway over the weekend and full access to other railway attractions and museums.

Previous headliners at Indietracks have included Teenage Fanclub, Saint Etienne, The Go! Team, Camera Obscura, Gruff Rhys, Edwyn Collins, Los Campesinos!, Cate Le Bon, The Wedding Present and The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart.

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