Make me lose my breath

Tony Clayton-lea on 10 acts to catch at this year’s Ox­e­gen

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Save its wide range of au­then­tic Tu­dor toi­let roll cosies, it’s fair to say that not many truly ex­cep­tional things have ever come from Totnes, Devon. Un­til, that is, Metron­omy fetched up in 1999. Al­though not un­duly pro­lific (three al­bums in 12 years), the band, no­tably found­ing mem­ber Joe Mount, has passed the time clev­erly remix­ing the likes of Kate Nash, Ladytron, Gold­frapp, Brit­ney Spears, Air, Lykke Li and U2.

Songs To Go Men­tal To: My Heart Rate Rapid, She Wants, The Look


Main Stage

They’re reg­u­lar vis­i­tors to Ire­land (their pre­vi­ous visit here was late last year when they stuffed the O ), so while it’s a no-sur­prises gig

2 you can still be guar­an­teed that MCR will raise a few smiles and eye­brows. Of course, now that they’ve been fea­tured on Glee it will mean a wider de­mo­graphic spread, which is good for the recog­ni­tion of their most re­cent (and solid as a very large rock) al­bum, Dan­ger Days: The True Lives of the Fab­u­lous Killjoys.

Songs To Go Men­tal To: Wel­come to the Black Pa­rade, Teenagers, Vam­pire Money


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We’re not so sure you can ac­tu­ally go men­tal to any songs by Noah and the Whale (see be­low for op­ti­mistic list), but you can cer­tainly nod your head to ’em. In­deed, this Lon­don­based in­die-folk act have upped the mu­si­cal ante since the re­lease of this year’s su­perb al­bum (and the band’s third) Last Night on

Earth. Sur­pris­ing many with its up­beat, of­ten dreamy and al­ways res­o­lutely 1980s pop sen­si­bil­i­ties (think Pre­fab Sprout meets Tom Petty), you can bet that tracks from this will get to the Ox­e­gen con­tin­gent be­fore ma­te­rial from the band’s rather more down­beat al­bums, Peace­ful, the World Lays Me Down and The First Days of Spring.

Songs To Go Men­tal To: L.I.F.E.G.O.E.S.O.N., Tonight’s the Kind of Night, Give It All Back


Main Stage

Arc­tic Mon­keys live? There’s a bit of a Kings of Leon vibe to this band’s stage per­for­mances: while the mu­sic is miles more quick-wit­ted, Alex Turner and co kind of stand there, just state the mu­si­cal facts, ma’am, and scarper af­ter an hour. Thank good­ness the songs – es­pe­cially the dozen or so on the crack­ing new al­bum, Suck It and See – de­liver the sort of as­sertive patter and smart-Alex quips that are miss­ing from so much of what we here these days.

Songs To Go Men­tal To: I Bet You Look Good on the Dance­floor, Brick by Brick, The Hell­cat Span­gled Sha­lalala

“Of course, now that My Chem­i­cal Ro­mance ve been fea­tured on Glee it will mean a wider de­mo­graphic spread”


Main Stage

Win­ners of the most re­cent Choice Mu­sic Prize, with Tourist His­tory, one of the best al­bums of last year, and the Ir­ish act that has de­liv­ered one of the gigs of the year (at Dublin’s Olympia Theatre last March), 2DCC are def­i­nitely on the cusp of some­thing very big. The Ban­gor/Don­aghadee trio of Sam Hal­l­i­day, Alex Trim­ble and Kevin Baird have, so far, de­liv­ered the kind of ki­netic pop-punk mu­sic that al­most takes on a life of its own. Songs such as Some­thing Good Can Work, Do You Want It All, Undercover Mar­tyn, What You Know, Cig­a­rettes In the Theatre and I Can Talk are so bloody good it’s get­ting to be bor­ing say­ing it so of­ten. Fol­low­ing the spate of sum­mer shows, the band head into the stu­dio for al­bum num­ber two.

Songs To Go Men­tal To: Cig­a­rettes In The Theatre, Do You Want It All, I Can Talk


Heineken Green Spheres

Say hello to the Ox­e­gen vir­gins! Al­though this Lon­don band has been around just over a year, they have man­aged to col­lect quite a few high-pro­file fans (Zane Lowe loved their demo of If You Wanna so much he de­scribed it as “the hottest record in the world”) and a fan­base that loves short, sharp, fun­da­men­tal pop-punk (think a nifty blend of Ra­mones, Clash, Je­sus & Mary Chain) played with a keen edge and no small level of ex­cite­ment. Hon­estly, peo­ple, back to ba­sics has rarely



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