June 9th -12th
VIDEOS ARE CURRENTLY BEING UPDATED – BACK ONLINE SOON
As the eighth annual Eden festival is just beginning to melt once more into its woodland surroundings, its time to take stock of what was a supreme belter of a weekend. So welcome to the garden of Eden. As you drive down the main road to Dumfries the site is situated in a wee valley with woodlands and a river. Adding to the beauty is the village of Eden, with lights, stages, shops, food stalls, childrens’ area, Drive-in Cinema, healing garden, sauna and much more… the theme was set for a wild weekend of bliss.
Just like that wicked early computer game, Sim City, Eden expands each year block-by-block. With a nifty little one-two shimmy, last year’s Melodrome stage was moved into the woods above the Boardwalk stage & became the centre-piece of a wonderful woodland world. Also newly arrived was a five-a-side football pitch & the superb Thunderdome, a brilliant place to hang out & watch folk have dance-offs, which in the afternoon was invariably won by the under-5s who honest to god had some reyt shlinky moves.
All the stalwarts of Eden were there; the eco-friendly Devorgilla main stage, the circussy second stage in the Furry Chillum tent, Rabbies Tavern which somehow manages to cram two stages underneath its roof, the dance world with its various tents & the cycle driven Boardwalk stage up from Yorkshire. To this were added a plethoric selection of global foodstuffs. The mellow & mixed punters were well caterer’d for, with essential oils, reflexologists, small axe workshops, henna, handmade waistcoats, silver ring making all on offer & a load of good nik-naks for the kids comblended with the pleasant & soul-warming hippy world of peace, healing & variety at the Garden of Eden Bandstand.
This year 8,000 kids & big kids were maxing the festival out for the first time, about which Eden’s kapitano, founder and Co-director Adam Curtis, told the Mumble, “I think the festival has been a resounding success, we have had a very good crowd this year, the atmosphere has been fantastic! There’s been a huge increase in young families attending which we very are happy to see, and we have had a great response to our young performers on the bandstands.” Two of these 8000 actually became one, when Tessa Brechin and Ben Gray from Mochrum, Wigtownshire had a surprise wedding on site watched on by happy festival goers.
Entertainment wise, things began with a bang, with Thursday night seeing Sheffield’s 10-piece Mango Rescue Team fill the Furry Chillum with their avant-garde, footstomping blend of Flamenco, Samba, North African Rai and Central African rumba. A wicked way to start the proceedings. The highlights on the main stage on the Friday was for the Mumble, The Langan Band, who somehow manage to create an eerie, dancey sound from just three musicians, & the snappily-dressed Gentleman’s Dub Club, who both got the site jumping & gossiping about their stellar performances.
Elsewhere on the site, the Mumble really dug Dexter (The Psychedelic Yardie) a Brixton genius whose tunes were proper jumping, while Edinburgh’s Tinky Disco continue their recent meteoric rise with a fresh & funky set in the Furry Chillum. ‘Superstylin’ Mike Daniel of Groove Armada has really settled into life with a full band & his rappin’ is among the best on the British islands. Funky, soulful and slightly kinky they slided through their set with ease, giving us an delightful start to the weekends musical extravagance … See you at Audio Soup Tinky boys…
Walking through the compound there is a wonderful variety of stalls. For food you have the Noodle Bar, which for £5.00 you can have an array of dishes to select from to go with your noodles. Bargain !!! Pizza is widely available as is good old Fish and Chips. With a corner shop selling toothbrushes, sweets and midge repellent all your forgotten items can be purchased here. Mexican and Haggis are some other options that are available and can be washed down with some local beers served at many of the bars that are around the village. With many a clothes stall you can replace you old festival clobber with some new and amazing pieces from all around the world. One of my favourite shops is “The Monkey Temple” with reasonable prices you can pick up jackets, backpacks, trousers and many other quirky wee gems. There is also a Locker Hire for your personal belongings should you feel the need to protect them. Overall you will not go hungry or cold at Eden as all areas have been taken care off.
Moving through a well happy crowd of weekend warriors I took in the set by King Charles at the Devorgilla Open Air Stage. Thankfully the weather held out and a sweet vibe flowed through the audience as they took to the stage. King Charles are a West London act with singer / songwriter Charles Costa at the helm. With a musical fusion of Alternative Rock, Folk-Pop, Indie with a Latino twist they got the Edeners jumping about like they had ants in their pants. Dance, boogie, jump , shout and scream, it was all going on… Great to have witnessed King Charles at last. Good luck with the tour. Mumbling about in the wee early hours on Saturday morning I placed myself at the mercy of Samedia Shebeen in the Furry Chillum Tent . This concoction of pineapple and coconut music delivers Latino and Caribbean delights to all present. Smooth and silky tunes to twist and shake your soul too, the infectious beats soon took us to a paradise island. Would like to see Samedia in the Snake Pit next year as I think that arena would explode with Samedia Shebeen delivering the goods.
After some of us slipp’d to slumberland to the sonic bibidee-boom of the site’s late-night revelry, the Saturday was another riot of fun & colour. The Dumfries Community Choir got everyone in a good mood with their romps through classic tunes, such as Like A Prayer & Titanium, a colourful hip bunch driven by their madcap, ubercamp songleader.
Meanwhile, Edinburgh’s No Quarter were young, nubile & brilliant in Rabbies Tavern. At the Boardwalk stage, Nottingham’s beat-boxing street poet Motormouf astounded every dancing & cycling with his boombastic brilliance, setting everyone up for a massive Saturday night.
Throughout the weekend I give myself up to the Children”s Area and helped out by playing games, helping create artistic masterpieces and getting beat by 6 year-olds at football… This is such an important party of Eden festival. Being renowned for having a family and kid friendly atmosphere they can emerge themselves in a weekend of heavenly activities. With so much colour and well planned decoration the Childrens area is like a Alice in Wonderland adventure. It gives me great delight to see families and children enjoying the outdoors and taking home a unforgettable experience.
Rushing over to the main Devorgilla stage to enjoy the addictive energy of Hollie Cook, who we reviewed at the Wee Dub Festival earlier this year”, I was met by a crowd of dub shaking Edeners . Beautiful in voice and presentation Hollie was sharing the same uplifting vibe of those she came to embrace with her seductive songs. Sailing through her sublime set of dub and reggae beats the field soon became a river of musical joy.
A virtual tour of Rabbie’s Tavern by Stephen Scott
The crown jewel of this was Skye & Ross from Morcheeba, who took everyone in the crowd to another level of bliss completely. Such classics like The Sea, Part of the Process, Trigger Hippy and much more were a memorable must for the fans of Morcheeba and they did not fail. With all the hits and a cover version of David Bowies “Lets Dance” Skye and Ross showed that they haven’t lost the ability to set a stage on fire. Skye”s voice melts through you like hot chocolate on a cold day.. An executed set of excellence !!!!! Eden was happening this year, big time, & not even the dodgy weather could dampen the spirits.
The night was then topped off perfectly by Shakti Mama Disco Diva’s sublime set after midnight at the Lost Disco, topping even last year’s magnificent effort. The Lost Disco is a Edeners place of disco and soul, that keeps them skanking until the wee hours. Shakti Mama said, “Wow ! thank you to everyone who came to my set and who not only rocked The Lost Disco but who endured the rain and kept dancing ! You were all amazing and it was a pleasure to play for you. Once again you were my favourite festival crowd. Thank you for supporting what I do and the music I love to share with you all. Eden was a spectacular blast once again ! It is definitely my favourite festival these days, and being able to DJ at The Lost Disco on the saturday night makes it all the more special. The second half of my set was accompanied by heavy rain, but I didn’t even realise from my sheltered DJ booth, until our wonderful sound guy came out to marvel at how the rain was absolutely chucking it down and yet we were still packed out and the dancing just kept on going ! I was so impressed with my crowd – what stars ! If you were there, then I salute you ! There is nothing like staying power in the face of the elements 🙂 Thank you to everyone who came and supported me and who danced like there was no tomorrow, even in the rain ! 🙂 I had a ball and I hope you all did too :)”
Sunday came & pass’d in a fusion of fun, fuzzy heads & more frolicking. All the punters were pals now as the Yellow Movement kicked into gear with a super, crowd-jumping set from Colonel Mustard & the Dijon Five, followed by rockabillying Daniel Meade & the Flying Mules really sitting on the pulse of the moment. A classic afternoon. Last act on was the true blues maestro himself, Edinburgh’s Baz Simpson, who had to wait til 1:15 on the Monday morning to perform. He told the Mumble, ‘ Well Eden it was a belter of a weekend. Amazing new people met, great jams in the campsite, campfire banter and tunes, great set at Rabbies, late night movies at the drive in, loads of random, good vibes, spins on the big wheel both night and day, a beautiful morning spent down by the river at 6am with my partner in crime, Veronic Casey, conga limes, crepes, Boogie and eternal partying…Massive thanks to all in The Tavern for another stompin year in The Garden. Huge amount of work and hours worked by all your crew and always felt very welcome despite festival fatigue. Loved playing the final slot on Sunday night. Just wish the midges didn’t like my blood so much….covered in bites. Still we will be back next year.’
There was more, much more, in every nook & cranny. But the Mumble can’t be everywhere, & so why don’t you investigate yourself next year – & make sure you get your tickets early, as its sure to be a sell-out.
Reviewers – Emily Beeson & Raymond Speedie
The Yellow Movements Reputation Grows.
The Yellow Movements Reputation Grows.