Latitude. A nice family festival, full of wood chipped forest floors, glimmering lakes and green fields. Children happily skip along, parents push buggies, people have a jolly good time. There must be a few bunny rabbits bounding around somewhere. They can probably talk, too. Henham Park is nothing short of idyllic.
And then, in an immediate wave of feedback, along come Drenge. No respect for a chilled out vibe, their bulldozer riffs clear all before them. Resist, and find yourself flattened like a young sap in the path of a hurricane force wind. Like it or not, for the next 40 minutes, Latitude is a rock festival, and it’s brilliant.
By the first chorus, there’s arms aloft, steam rising from a pit of converts. Outright mayhem, captured and compressed into a focused beam, the newly augmented Loveless x2 (+1) fit those Derbyshire Nirvana comparisons better than ever - but that’s only part of their charm. A stalking tension hides beneath every riff, a tensed muscle ready to ride every crunching explosion. There’s blackness in their soul, but their demons dance to their tune alone.
There’s nothing crass in Drenge’s onslaught. Their power may be mighty, but it’s far from brute. Robust, direct, and ready for a riot, there’s no band better to wake Latitude up from a Saturday morning slumber. Consider this party firmly started.
Photos: Sarah Louise Bennett.
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