Unless you’ve been in hiding over the past few months you’ll know that Colchester Free Festival returns next weekend, after a break last year. One thing that really stood out for me at the 2013 festival was the lack of representation from Colchester’s dance music culture. It’s great news that this is being covered well again this year with DJs in the bandstand (both days) and the Holllytrees Stage (Saturday). And it’s the Hollytrees stage that’s caught my eye with Paul Hagger and Alex Graham (Pinkeye) taking it over on the Saturday with their successful SubCulture brand, the line-up representing the diversity of their nights and the local scene.
The opportunity to curate a stage at the Colchester Free Festival is invaluable to both SubCulture as a brand as well as the collective of artists we work to promote, and we have to give a lot of credit to the festival organisers for giving us the opportunity to showcase the music we believe represents elements of our parties, the town, and bass culture in general.
For us it’s very important to focus on showcasing the very best musicians and creatives based in both our musical family, and the Colchester area in which we operate. Within our locality there is a massive amount of talent, and more importantly the development of professional film/music studios, venues and resources which allow them to be harnessed.
Across our collective years of promotion we have seen many of our friends take national, in some cases international stages, and the musical progression from artists based in Colchester and the surrounding areas has proved to be both non-genre specific and shows no signs of slowing down. Colchester Free Festival is the one day of the year where everyone pools resources to create both a celebration and a spectacle, and to have SubCulture feature as part of the towns rich cultural tapestry is an honour.
With an after-party taking place at Tribal Nightclub it’s also a rare opportunity for us to display the full spectrum of sounds that we promote. We’ll start the day with Reggae veteran Bopper Rankin in the park and end with local Drum & Bass producer Heist showcasing his upfront UK style in the club. Our day & night programme will encompass everything from Reggae, Dub, Hip-Hop and Ska to Garage, Grime, Jungle & DnB.
In a wider context the digital age now has a firm grip over the music industry. There’s an increasing dissolution between commercial and independent markets and we are living in an age of self-promotion and artist opportunity. SubCulture will continue to represent niche genres and the future is looking brighter for many of the hard-working independent musicians that we work with. We believe that is what is worth truly celebrating!
Paul Hagger & Alex Graham
SubCulture are set to takeover the Hollytrees stage at the Colchester Free Festival 2015 on Saturday 29th Augusts with an official afterparty at Tribal Nightclub in the evening that will feature Jungle & Drum and Bass, Garage & Grime and Reggae & Dub with performers including Heist, Dream Mclean, YT & many more. Check here for details and tickets for the afterparty.