Kendal Calling logo

Kendal Calling logo

We take a look at the bands you need to catch if you’re heading to Kendal Calling in Cumbria this weekend.

If Glastonbury is the city of festivals then Kendal Calling is your village green. The festival, now in its eighth year, is still small enough to keep the friendly feel of the boutique while having a big enough reputation to pull in some amazing bands.

The line up for the sold out 2013 event is another corker. Headliners on the main stage are Basement Jaxx, The Charlatans and Primal Scream with Public Enemy, Seasick Steve, Ash, Johnny Marr and I Am Kloot also set to make appearances.

With the top of the billing looking that good it’s even more pleasing that the rest of the line up is bursting with excellent acts and emerging talent.

If you’ve heard the call of the fields and are heading to Lowther Deer Park this weekend here are our recommendations across the festival’s three days.


Ease yourself into the festival weekend with a good mooch around to check out all the stages – Ryan Jarvis over on the Jagermeister stage, Mobius Loop on the Woodland Stage, Hatcham Social and Dave Haslam on at The Houseparty, The Heartbreaks and Theme Party on the Calling Out Stage and Bondax in the Glow Dance Tent.

The pull of the main stage as darkness falls is going to be hard to resist – Public Enemy and Basement Jaxx close up the first day and it’s bound to be packed with festival ravers reaching for the lasers in the open air.


Keep a close eye on Tim Burgess, if today’s line up is anything to go by he may well be quietly making a play for world domination. Of course, the day will end with him and The Charlatans headlining the main stage but his hand is across much of the rest of Saturday.

There’s signings from his O Genesis label Throwing Up and Slowgun on the House Party stage as well as a DJ set by Burgess late afternoon. And of course the Tim Peaks Diner will be serving up coffee and damn fine cherry pie as well as musical magic and surprises. Last year his guests at the diner Roddy Frame and Edwin Collins provided one of the festival’s highlights with their sing-a-long of girl like you so it’s definitely worth hanging out and seeing what fun’s to be had.

Elsewhere there’s plenty to get your ears around – The Gramotones open up the Calling Out stage to be followed later in the day with slots for Sweet Baboo, London Grammar and British Sea Power.

Hallouminati and Dub Pistols (who are also set for a DJ slot in the Glow Dance tent) are worth catching at Chai Wallahs and back at House Party you’ve also got Velveteen Saints and Calling All Astronauts.

The Tea Street Band are first up on the main stage and there’s plenty of picks here before the headliners – Ash, I Am Kloot and Dutch Uncles all worthy of your time.


Don’t for a second think this is a day of rest – the good times keep rolling right through the last day of the festival. The Houseparty is hosting some top DJ sets – Prince Fatty (and the Horsemen), The Whip, Baggy Mondays and Clint Boon all take to the decks.

Over on the Calling Out stage you’ve got A Plastic Rose, Public Service Broadcasting, The 1975, Wave Machines and Lucy Rose to entertain you.

Main stage has the Tom Watson endorsed Drenge, the crowd-pleasing Beans on Toast and a final three of Johnny Marr, Seasick Steve and Primal Scream. Not too shabby, eh?

It’s looking like a bumper weekend for musical delights in the Lake District so we’ll see you in the fields!

All words by Sarah Lay. You can read more from Sarah on LTW here or follow her on Twitter.

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Sarah is a former editor of Louder Than War and a freelance music writer for numerous other publications online and in print. Co-owner of Reckless Yes Records she has put out music by LIINES, Pet Crow and lots of other awesome bands as well as put on shows by bands including Bivouac, Mark Morriss, Desperate Journalist and Dream Nails. She's an author, user experience designer and digital content strategist, as well as an occasional broadcaster. Sarah is a compulsive collector of coloured vinyl, a believer in the boogie and is in love with possibilities.


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