Appliance of science boosts County Durham music festival

We Are Scientists are set to play at Down in the Woods.
We Are Scientists are set to play at Down in the Woods.

What is now the North East’s biggest music festival has been boosted by the appliance of science.

The US act, formed in California in 1999 but now based in New York City, might not really be scientists, but not many, if any, members of the audience of up to 10,000 that Hardwick Hall, near Sedgewick, will be able to accommodate on Saturday and Sunday, August 13 and 14, will be there to put their knowlege of biology, chemistry or physics to the test, so that’s unlikely to be an issue.

Primal Scream's Bobby Gillespie.

Primal Scream's Bobby Gillespie.

What those going along will want is to hear the Americans run through a back catalogue including five top 40 singles over here – 2005’s The Great Escape, a No 37; 2006’s It’s a Hit, a No 29, and Nobody Move, Nobody Get Hurt, a No 56 the year before but a No 21 second time round; and 2008’s After Hours and Chick Lit, a No 15 and No 37 respectively.

The band, formed by Keith Murray and Chris Cain while they were students together, released their fifth album, Helter Seltzer, last month, scoring a No 48 hit.

They join a line-up already boasting the likes of indie rock veterans Primal Scream and Echo and the Bunnymen, drum-and-bass duo Chase and Status and up-and-coming rock acts Vant and Catfish and the Bottlemen.

The Selecter, Lucy Spraggan, Peter Hook and the Light, Kwabs and Clean Cut Kid are among the others on the bill.

Weekend tickets are priced at £99 for adults, £28 for teenagers aged 13 to 16 and £15 for children aged three to 12. Day tickets are also available, priced £55 for grown-ups. for details, go to downtothewoodsfestival.co.uk

This year’s Down to the Woods follows three years of Hardwick Live shows featuring the likes of James, Cast, Simple Minds, the Jacksons, Embrace and Texas.

It reverts to the two-day format tried out in 2014 but abandoned in 2015 in favour of going back to being the single-day event it started out as, but it will be in August again this year unlike the first two Hardwick Hall shows, both held in September.

We Are Scientists will also be playing at Cumbria’s Kendal Calling festival in July, together with Catfish and the Bottlemen, and they can be seen along with Primal Scream again at Lakefest 2016 in Ledbury in Herefordshire in August.