Check out some articles in these categories...NEWS» FEATURES» SOCIETIES» SCIENCE & TECH» ARTS» SPORTS» OPINION & ANALYSIS» ARCHIVE»
More Music stories...Old Dogs, New Tricks: Elton John and Leon Russell - ´The Union´ (2010)
With Elton John's upcoming album 'The Diving Board' scheduled to be released later this year, now seems as appropriate a time as any to explore the most recent stages of the piano legend's discography. In particular, it seems fitting to revisit Sir Elton's most recent studio offering: his 2010 collaboration with fellow Seventies rock veteran Leon Russell, 'The Union'.Read more...
Talking to John Newman totally put me to shame. At 21, this guy has had a number one single and a top twenty single in collaboration with Rudimental, has performed at festivals with them, performed at Ibiza Rocks and is currently promoting his very own solo material.Read more...
I’m a girl who likes guitars. I listen to most kinds of music, but if I had to pick a favourite genre, I’d choose rock.Read more...
Published 17th May 2012
Sonisphere is a touring music festival which has been held in an increasing number of countries across Europe over the past 3 years. Although Reading, Leeds and Glastonbury tend to spring to mind first when the word “festival” is mentioned, for anyone who is a fan of heavier music, Download Festival now flies the flag alone. Although Sonisphere is not a mainstream festival, it is a popular one, and it caters for a large section of music fans. So when the line-up announcements were late, the line-up itself was controversial (Queen performing with Adam Lambert raised a few eyebrows) and tickets sold slowly, the decision was made that it would be best to cancel all the planned dates. But what do those in the know think? Was its cancellation for the best? I asked a couple of friends who have attended each year since Sonisphere made its 2009 UK debut for their input.
I wanted to know firstly if they thought it was a good thing that the festival had been cancelled entirely. Opinions varied. One thought that the fact they had won the award for the best line-up last year was a poisoned chalice, as this meant expectations were obviously pretty high for the line-up announcements. He thought it was a good idea they decided to cancel the festival as the last 3 years had provided some of the best live performances he’d ever witnessed, stating that seeing a half empty Sonisphere would be worse than seeing it cancelled all together.
However, another raised the point that the experience of seeing Queen live – despite being led by Adam Lambert instead of Freddie Mercury – could still have been well worth it. He also mentioned that he felt the atmosphere differed between the two festivals – where Download, now in its 10th year, is about the overall experience as much as the bands, Sonisphere, being relatively new and the lesser known of the two, can be seen to be for those who are there first and foremost for the music. Also, the variation of having 2 rock/metal festivals in the country did make a difference in terms of Download being during exam times for students. Therefore, the absence of Sonisphere this year is pretty significant.
Now Download has lost its main rival, the point was raised that if Sonisphere doesn’t come back for 2013, then it could potentially have one of its strongest line-ups. However, festivals are a great way for bands to make a breakthrough so if a Europe-wide major festival like Sonisphere can be entirely cancelled, rock and metal music fans lose out on a great way to discover new bands and new bands lose an important platform from which to promote their music.
So can Sonisphere bounce back next year? I got a mixed response. “Unless they can grab themselves 3 major headliners very early on, I can't see a recovery for them, as much as I want them to” one stated. However, given the success of previous years and the loyal fan base the festival has accumulated, another couldn’t see why they couldn’t come back. The conclusion could be that it all hinges on how the organisers approach this year’s setback – if they get discouraged by the blow, Sonisphere’s future is in jeopardy. However if they take the time to regroup and come back strong with an excellent line-up, they may give Download a run for their money. Only time will tell.