Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Go wild in the country! Wilderness Festival 12th-14th August

Organised by the dudes/dudettes behind Secret Garden and occupying the same beautiful site that used to be home to Cornbury (which has now moved down the road a bit) Wilderness is an intriguing new addition to the boutique festival calendar. Bringing together music, art, literature, theatre, food and ‘wellbeing’ it boasts some suitably eclectic quality acts including the swoonsome Anthony and the Johnsons and the gypsy punk mentalism of Gogol Bordello along with Guillemots, Mercury Rev (performing their legendary Deserter Songs album in its entirety) and...amazingly...the king of outsider music himself, Mr Daniel Johnston. We’re not worthy. There’s even a spa and wood fired hot tub under the stars...a hot tub at a festival...jeez I think I’ve died and gone to heaven. Whether Daniel Johnston will pop in for a quick dip we'll have to wait and see.

Festival food generally sucks big hairy ball. In fact I'm pretty sure I've tucked into a pair once or twice, masquerading as the filling in a 'pasty'. But happily Wilderness seems to be catering for the stomach as much as it is for the mind, soul and ears. Fine dining comes courtesy of Moro Restaurant on Saturday evening and The Petersham Nurseries Cafe on Sunday. Sure as hell beats a spinal column in a bap eh? If you’re in the mood for a bit of a ponder Tom Hodgkinson of The Idler (rapidly becoming my personal bible) is running (well...walking probably) The Idler Academy too. All in all it’s the perfect event for people who like the idea of a festival but probably ain’t so keen on the grotty bits.

It all takes place 12-14 August at Cornbury Park, Oxfordshire and tickets are a not unreasonable £99.50 + booking fee. I'll see you in the hot tub...I'll be the one next to Daniel Johnston.

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