Anyone cynical enough to write off Camden Crawl as an excuse just to get leathered and listen to floppy-fringed frat-boys, should check out the newly-announced 'evening' line-up right now and hang their heads in shame and awe. Ladies and gentlemen, please be up-standing for one of the most melodic and down-right bloody good bands from the 90s, Teenage Fanclub.
Norman Blake's fuzzy surf-pop dudes were flavour of the month with many indie-heads and critics alike, yet never seemed to cross-over to a wider audience (probably because they were busy buying shite instead). TC did, however, rack up 5 top 40 hits and oodles of near-misses including 'What You Do To Me', 'Star Sign', 'Mellow Doubt', 'I Don't Want Control Of You' (one of the best pop songs EVER) and 'Ain't That Enough' during their spell on Creation. They played second-fiddle to Oasis and Primal Scream I guess, but they did at least get loved just a little. You really must get to see them - oh, and a new album looms on the horizon, entitled 'Shadows'. Their previous album 'Man-Made' even reached number 34 while issued on a tiny label - theirs.
Alongside the Fannies, The Drums from Brooklyn will appear fresh from their nomination as 'BBC Sound of 2010', their performances on the recent NME Shockwaves Tour and as confirmation as Florence and the Machines' support on their Cosmic Love Tour. They look like a good bet for a Mercury methinks, mind you they need an album out first (hint hint). Citing The Smiths and The Wake (who are playing Popfest!) as major influences on their sound, their style is jolly jingle-jangle and, boy, don't we need a little spot of that these days.
Other must-sees include Cornershop, Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip, The Delays, Speech Debelle, Billy Childish, the bonkers thrashinistas Chickenhawk, Pulled Apart By Horses and another legendary act that got Kurt Cobain and Love in a lather (and rightly so), Young Marble Giants. Definitely in the DIY post-punk ball-park, YMG released a landmark album, 'Colossal Youth', back in 1980 to widespread acclaim. In NME, Cobain is quoted as saying, "This music relaxes you, it's total atmospherics. It's just nice, pleasant music. I love it. The drum machine has to have the cheesiest sound ever. We're going to be on a Young Marble Giants compilation, doing 'Credit in the Straight World'. I had a crush on the singer for a while-didn't everyone?". Grunge-rock it ain't, minimal electronic ear-candy it is.
There are still some weekend tickets left, priced at £57 - this gets a wristband pass to all the Crawl events on May 1st and the 2nd. Get in!