The barmiest festival in all the land, the treasured Beat-Herder returns in 2017 with its unrivalled and eccentric party in the Ribble Valley, Lancashire.
One of the few remaining independent festivals in the UK, Beat-Herder is a place where different musical tribes congregate as one. Throughout the event’s 12 year history, they have united the subcultures of dance music and beyond: dub, reggae, house, psytrance, techno, indie, rock, psychedelic, drum & bass and dubstep are all presented across 21 stages.
Performing on Saturday will be anarchic duo Sleaford Mods, in what will be their only UK Northern festival appearance of 2017. Joining them will be Danish multi-instrumentalist Trentemøller, who will take to the main stage with a full live band. In addition, musical innovators from all corners of the globe, each having led the way in their respective fields: dub hero Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, progressive ska and rocksteady legends Toots and the Maytals, celebrated UK figure David Rodigan (MBE), and the hugely influential hip-hop group The Sugarhill Gang.
Other acts include true dub luminary and On-U Sound honcho Adrian Sherwood, and German group Milky Chance, who will bring their own blend of folk, reggae and electronica infused pop. Hospital Records icon High Contrast will play The Ring – a 100ft diameter bank of earth with imposing walls and a stonehenge style entrance, paying tribute to the Ribble Valley’s mystical heritage. Elsewhere, Techno act Slam, and the all-conquering Glaswegian duo OPTIMO (Espacio), celebrate 20 years of their now legendary eponymous party with a special anniversary set in The Fortress, a giant steel citadel complete with fire-spewing turrets.
Spinning his mix of funk, jazz, reggae and more, Beat-Herder stalwart Mr. Scruff returns, alongside dubstep experimentalist Artwork. Post-industrial band Factory Floor, Ninja Tune’s Romare (full live band), Black Butter’s SHY LUV, Richy Ahmed, Mercury prize nominee Jon Hopkins and Denis Sulta, who recently skyrocketed up RA’s Top 100 DJ poll to number 26, are also confirmed.
At Beat-Herder, the music is only just the beginning of the experience. Renowned for its entirely handmade site, which is lovingly crafted from scratch, the eccentric creators source unusual materials to conjure up unique and impressive elements and stages to explore and discover. At a time when all festivals have started to look the same, there is truly no other like Beat-Herder. Testament to their scrupulous attention to detail, they are previous winners of the ‘Extra Festival Activity Award’ at the UK Festival Awards which’recognise that extra bit of attention to detail that creates magical and unforgettable experiences’.
Expect underground tunnels to find and crawl through, a hidden heated swimming pool, hot tubs, vintage cars to dance on, a fairground complete with ferris wheel, taxidermy workshops, chainsaw carving, Christmas crackers, fancy dress, conga lines, talent competitions, pink discos, tattoos, fireworks displays and achurch – complete with Sunday Service and (unofficial) marriages. If a wedding isn’t on the cards, find the on-site dating facilities or vibrator engraving instead!
Originating from roots as a DIY free party on the Northern moors in 2006, the creators of Beat-Herder were inspired to design an intimate party in the Ribble Valley, Lancashire, an area of charming natural beauty and the perfect festival backdrop.
Check out an exclusive playlist from the Beat-Herder team below for a flavour of some of the tunes to expect over the weekend….