The Solus Tent 2012

Thursday, April 19th, 2012

For the third year in a row we will be descending upon the Wickerman Festival and particularly The Solus Tent. Detour will be joining us and we will be hopefully causing as much havoc backstage and giving Chay Woodman (Solus Tent curator and chief) and his team a worse reputation than they already have.

Last night at midnight the artist playing the Solus Tent 2012 were announced. We now look at a more in depth view of them all!


I have real respect for Malcolm Middleton. He continues to reinvent himself, but still hold onto the roots that he has previously established. I have previously said that he has the ability to tap right into your emotional core. As one of the headliners of the Solus Tent, Human Don’t Be Angry is a worthy choice and promises to end the weekend on a complete high.


These boys are the other Solus Tent headliners that will take to the stage on the Friday of the festival. Having built up noticeable reputation for being loud and addictive again this is a great choice for a bill topper. They have an antagonistic streak and songs such as Red Letter and Confuse Her Now are some of the best tracks to hit my ears in 2011. Prepare yourself for massive percussion, shredding guitars and lots of sweat.


A group I am familiar with by name and their other project, but not as a collective. This is not my usual headphones listening, but that is the beauty of the Solus Tent, there is something for everyone. Comprising of musicians from a host of other bands, their live performances have been described as incredible with beautiful vocals and a diverse instrumental line-up.


I will always have a soft spot for acoustic artist Beerjacket (Peter Kelly), he is someone I discovered pre-Podcart supporting Tom Vek and continued to follow him about like a puppy. His music, ethos, intelligence and humanity are overwhelming and is one of the artists that have shone most for me over the last 6 years. His live performances are captivating not to mention his banter which is hilarious. Probably the artist I am most pleased about on this bill.


Fuuuuuuuuuuucccccccckkkkkkk! Yes, this is an unconventional way of starting a sentence, however these two are really showing the eclecticism that Solus represents in terms of new music. An MC and a beatboxer that will hopefully hush the audience into submission. Bigg Taj is a talented man, his latest musical releases have been a step up and I am just glad to see him making appearances in places you would not necessarily think.


An artist on the A Badge of Friendship roster and Armellodie Records. These guys have a very accomplished sound and for fans of Pulp and Richard Hawley with perhaps a harsher edge this will be the band. Tracks such as A Modest Refusal are brilliant and really show off what excellent musicians this lot are. They will fit perfectly into the Solus Tent vibe.


According to Lewis Cook of Yahweh/Mother Ganga fame ‘The Cosmic Dead will rip The Solus Tent a new arsehole’. Lewis does help make up part of the band which is also a complete bonus. Described as psych and drone their expansive recordings will not be for the faint hearted, but by the power of James T McKay they will put everything into their performance.


This band are a bit of a guilty pleasure for me. I really think we are going to be giving it yaldi when they are on stage. Having seen them a few times now, this band give an excellent live performance and their fans are some of the liveliest and committed I have witnessed. They compose big songs with electro hooks that just make you want to bounce as if you were on the rump of a really fit woman.


As part of your packing we suggest you bring earplugs and a nappy. One of the heaviest bands playing the Solus Tent, these guys are rapid fire, they create a feverous pace and for a hardcore outfit they still have inclusions of melody tied into titanic riffs.


Another of the notable artists to be playing the Solus Tent, 2011/2012 has proved a defining year for this band and they are really starting to come into their own as a Scottish hip hop outfit. A thought-provoking MC and a female drummer, they are a duo that look to their own and no one else and whilst their lines can be controversial their rhythms will inspire many.


These boys have been at it for a while now and having toured quite substantially around the UK they are finally starting to get people talking. They create exhilarating, dizzying music and are one of the more inventive metal bands in recent times. They are complete indulgence.


A bombastic trio that are raucous and gargantuan both in sound and appearance. Having recently signed to Chemikal Underground Records it is going to be a big year for these boys. Their drummer is one of the best in the country and they will be sure to make many a quim quiver.


Well, this is going to make me cry. I will just tell you now; I am an emotional hippo as it is when it comes to Doogan’s voice and lyrics, but with a choir? This is going to tip me over the edge…… in a good way! Julia Doogan is a naturally gifted lady, her lyrics are poignant and her voice is effortless. This is one not to miss.


This is the weekend’s party band. The T Break tent at last year’s T in the Park last year had to close as it was over capacity so watch out Dumfries, you are gonnae get stuffed Fontmania styleee! This band have supported Twin Atlantic, sold out King Tut’s and generally built a fan base from scratch that now is spectacular. They may not be everyone’s cup of tchai tea, but there is no denying they are one excellent live band.


This Edinburgh band were first introduced by the TAPE crew and went along to see them supporting the mighty Dead Boy Robotics at Nice n Sleazys. I had stereotyped them ridiculously and was pleasantly surprised! They mix old school indie with electro and have a beautifully fresh sound. They are one of those bands that grow on you and before you know it you are listening to them all the time on SoundCloud.


The De Rosa frontman produced one of our favourite albums of 2011, his melancholy songs and black humour go a long way to separating him form a lot of artists and making him as endearing as an elderly couple holding hands walking down the street. His experience on the gig and festival circuit will mean that this is sure to be a faultless performance.


Yet another A Badge of Friendship roster artist and another Idlewild connection! Rod Jones (guitarist from Idlewild) formed another band and have been touring incessantly. Their live performances have won them a host of fans and having seen them in King Tut’s I really cannot wait to witness them in the beer filled scented air of Solus.


Salo are part of the Overlook Records roster (PLEASE CHECK IT OUT) and are definitely one of those bands that you have to see live to fully appreciate them. 3 vocalists, 3 members, puking drummer that will rein hell on Wickerman. You have been warned.


Probably the band that Detour will be looking forward to most. They have it all, anthemic songs, quotable lyrics and humble band members. Foreign Thoughts remains to this day as one of the best songs we have ever played on Podcart and their debut album is still played regularly. I truly hope that 2012 brings them a substantially bigger audience.


Last, but by no means least it is the Edinburgh instrumental trio that are severely underrated. We have seen this band evolve over the last couple of years and they now seem to be comfortably able to blow people’s bollocks off in a clear and concise manner. Their new material is up there with bands such as And So I Watch You From Afar and Vessels and they will in no way be outdone by the rest of the line-up at Solus.

All in all it is going to be a spectacular weekend. Special mention to Chay Woodman that curated a line-up that really is special for us. Fuck the main stage hen do saga, Solus is where it’s at.

Halina Rifai