- Tue, 2012-05-29 22:53
Tucked beneath a cove of trees in a small corner of Glastonbury Festival, the Glade Stage built up a reputation for blaring out underground electronic sounds, late late into the night. When the Glade crew announced they were branching out into a festival in 2004, the alternative dance community rejoiced...
Denouncing sponsorship, Glade Festival took their reputation to the next level. Emerging genres of dance music weren't just added to the bill, they were given their own stage, creative installations were swept across their beautiful Berkshire site and four days of mind-expansive, free-party informed fun rolled naturally into 'Best Dance Festival' at the UK Festival Awards, creating a hoarde of loyal attendees.
After four years in Berkshire a bulging new trend for UK festivals blossomed, forcing the heart and soul of Glade Festival through licencing problems, hiked police costs and a number of site-changes. A month after our April 2010 interview with Nick Ladd (one of the four original Glade founders), Glade 2010 was cancelled...
Triumphing over adversity, Glade returned in 2011 after joining up with Secret Productions, the masterminds behind UK festival Secret Garden Party. Breathing a sigh of relief, we packed our bags and headed towards their shiny new Norfolk site check out our 2011 pics here!
2012 sees Glade return to Houghton Hall, Norfolk - the first time in five years that the festival has been able to return to the same site for a consecutive year. A better knowledge of the site, more time and space to plan plus a bigger, crazy creative team, Glade 2012 is truly set to return as the UK's premier, alternative electronic music festival. Woop!
We called up founder Ans to see how things were looking so far this year;
"This year is going to be an absolute cracker! The difference between last year and this year is massive. Last year was all so last minute. The site plan was kind of rushed. It's much more compact this year. Plus, we're allowed into the woods! We have two stages in the woods! One is the return of the liquid stage, which captures that free-party-psychedelic-trance thing, then the new meteor stage, which is going to feel like a spacecraft has crashed landed in the woods, left a dancefloor with bass pits underneath and DJs in the cockpit, which is like a flying saucer in the trees... "
Toddla T, Foreign Beggars, Sven Vath, Andy C, Dub Pistols, Rusko, Dillinja and Vitalic are a small selection from an impressive line-up of alternative dance music across 14 stages this summer. We spoke to Jimmy Edgar about the 'complete visual experience' he's developed to accompany his Overkill Tent set, "it's basically an LED installation. Bright colours, light, animation in a way..." while festival stalwarts and official party openers Ben & Lex let us in on their plans for Glade this year;
"This year's Glade is going to be a great one for us as we have been given the honour of returning to the main G stage for our now traditional opening set of big party festy tunes - from old skool hop to D&B and everything in between to get everyone in the mood. Then on the Saturday night we have our Bassment stage set with some of our bezzy mates joining us on the night, where we will be showcasing some new material off our forthcoming album - big rave-a-geddon!"
As the term "festival" gets bandied about a bit these days, we asked Ans how it felt to be part of the UK festival scene in 2012...
"It's kind of lost its way a bit, I think. The culture surrounding people like us has kind of gone, people who do it because all we want is to have a party in a field, and we'll do it for the fun of it. Sadly, there are a few casulties. As soon as things become popular the money follows and then the intention changes, it starts to become packaged and sold in different ways. Having said all that, it does mean that if you retain that true reason for doing things, you shine through. I think. Certainly that's the ethos we have at Glade."
With Glade fully back on track for 2012, what about 2013, 2014....what's the future of Glade?
"It's definitely here to stay. Next year? Who knows! It's unchartered! All I know is, it'll be pretty awesome. Plan is to keep it going for as long as it has a natural life. If that's 30 years, brilliant. If it's not, c'est la vie..."
Get yourself to Glade 2012: 14-17th June, Houghton Hall, Norfolk