Tuesday, 16 March 2010

First BBC 6 Music and now Camden Crawl

The Sugarbabes at Camden Crawl – what’s that all about then? It’s like putting ketchup on a Chinese takeaway.

Camden Crawl has always been about curious young (and not so young) minds coming together for two days to discover the very best in new music. It’s about discovery, and chance surprises. It’s about popping into a bar for a drink and finding the place going off to a group of Norwegians in matching tracksuits playing slap bass (trust me, it was good!).

Of course there are always headliners, and they can sometimes be a bit predictable. Last year we were treated to been-there-done-that Kasabian, and the dullsome Macabees. No doubt they delighted fans, and that’s fine - festivals need headliners and everyone has their own tastes. But still, there is a big jump between that and the Sugarbabes. They are not what Camden Crawl is or should be about.

I did really like the Sugarbabes when they first came on the scene in the late 90s. For a start they looked different from all the other pop acts around (wow, a red head in a girl group – whatever next!). Their debut single Overload won a Brit award and seemed as at home in a Hoxton club as a teen disco. That’s a pretty hard combination to get right.

Then in fighting caused the departure of our flame haired wonder and bit by bit they dissolved into yet another plastic Barbie pop band. What once seemed so filled with promise had turned into dull predictability.

I don’t know whether headlining Camden Crawl is the Sugarbabes way of trying to appear a bit more edgy, or the organisers trying to bring the festival to a wider market. Whatever it is I find it really disappointing. If the Sugarbabes are going to be at a festival then they should jump on their bandwagon and head off to V.

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