Posted by: TomA | 6 August 2007

Tales of the Jackalope


It isn’t every day that The Fall play a couple of miles up the road from you in rural Norfolk. Yet even that (serious) temptation wasn’t enough to initially tempt me to the Vice Magazine run Tales of the Jackalope in Kimberley this weekend. £35 for a ticket seemed a touch steep, a free spot on the guest list turned out to be just the thing I needed to head down…


The line up wasn’t really my cup of tea to be honest. Full of far too many “trendy” “nu-rave” bands, most of whom appear to feel wearing bright colours and pretending its the early 1990s is a sure fire recipe for success. There were a few glimmers of hope though, notably in the appearance the Mark E. Smith and The Fall, along with a few other bands well worth listening to: Fucked Up, Gang Gang Dance, 2ManyDJs and the chance to finally see Dizzee Rascal (again, not someone I’ve listened to a huge amount – I prefer my grime less shiny).


In truth, the festival was a slightly fearsome experience. While the both the setting and the weather was gorgeous, the same can’t really be said of your typical Vice reader. It was all rather too like being stuck in an episode of Chris Morris‘ fantastic take of the fashionable London media circus, Nathan Barley. Sitting in the sun, barely ten minutes went past before another photographer came to take photos of the crazy and individualist folks around us, all, entertainingly, dressed in a delightfully similar way. It was very much the place to be seen.

Vice Magazine



On a side note, please take a look at the website for Vice magazine (entirely non-fictional), linked above, and the Trashbat website from Nathan Barley, a product of Morris’ warped and wonderful imagination. Or purely a copy of Vice? Who’s to say.


[To the left, Vice magazine]




Back to the festival. One or two bands caught my attention through the day. One, purely because the drummer was naked. Shame that’s all they had going for them, everything else was entirely unmemorable. Had she not been young, Japanese and naked, no doubt they’d be playing pubs to disinterested drinkers.

Mark E. Smith of The Fall

The Fall were entirely different. Mark E. Smith has never failed to be exciting, interesting and controversial, as far as I know, always fully clothed. He might have been doing this for over 25 years, but every snarled syllable brought utter delight (from me, at least). Vice readers seemed unsure what to make of a man old enough to be their collective fathers on stage, displaying some degree of contempt for the majority of the audience (albeit, not a new concept for Fall gigs).


As far as other artists go, I can’t say I saw enough of anyone to pass judgement, beside those I did see, I rarely wanted to see another song. Shy Child were painfully dull, and the hour spent after The Fall, waiting for what I expected to be Fucked Up turned into massive disappointment then complete disgust as The Hours turned up on stage. I’d (luckily) not come across them before, but 60 seconds of their whining, wet and insipid balladry could only make one wish to see them all thumped by Smith.

By now the festival was running well over 2 hours late, with little sign of Dizzee, Fucked Up or Gang Gang Dance in the near future, just a field full of hipsters on a diverse selection of non-prescription drugs. With nothing to eat besides a cold pasty at 2am, the time had come to leave them to it.

By way of an entirely unrelated observation, it was rather enjoyable watching security try and enforce the smoking ban in the tented stages. Needless to say, as soon as a crowd had gathered, it really didn’t happen.



  1. I believe we never did quite discuss the agreements of my guestlist services. Also I take back what I said about Barley, it reminded me more of Narnia. Narnia with more grub beer and ill-fitting trousers….x

  2. The food was like something out of nathan barley; Organic chilli bean pies!?

    Trying to get the timings of different bands was near impossible because they were so behind the time schedual.

    The Alcohol policy was crazy aswell, you could take as many class A’s past security as you wanted, but as soon as a drop of alcohol from outside of the site was involved consider it conviscated!

    But afterall that, the nathan barley trendyness of it all is kinda endering!

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