posted on April 22, 2010 19:00
Rock en Seine might be familiar to you, by name at least. Last year the annual Paris summer festival earned its place in rock history/pub quiz trivia when Oasis split up mere minutes before they were due to go on stage.
Indeed, Rock en Seine has had recurring problems with its choice of headliners. Two years in a row, Amy Winehouse cancelled at the last minute. Such are the perils of booking tabloid-friendly big-name rock stars.
It seems that the festival organisers have learned their lesson: this year Rock en Seine goes for weekend-wide credibility rather than putting all their eggs in one basket-case.
And they've done well - Rock en Seine 2010, on 27-29 August in the Parc de Saint-Cloud on the edge of Paris, looks much more impressive than recent editions. Mainstream and alternative music fans alike will find much to enjoy.
That said, the first day doesn't appeal greatly to your indie-kid correspondent. Blink 182, of all people, top a bill of '90s nostalgia acts - Cypress Hill, Skunk Anansie and Underworld. Foals, The Kooks and Black Rebel Motorcycle Club fill out the field.
Day two makes up for it. True, the headliners are another '90s heritage act - Massive Attack - and a safe-hands rock band - Queens of The Stone Age. But LCD Soundsystem, Two Door Cinema Club (for their monthly French concert), Kele Okereke (of Bloc Party) and Jonsi (of Sigur Ros) bring a breeze of cool freshness that should clear the flatulent stink of Paolo Nutini.
On the third day: Arcade Fire, Roxy Music, Beirut, Eels and Wave Machines. Oh yes.
More acts will be revealed in June. At the time of writing, there are no French artists booked for Rock en Seine. None at all. No doubt a token 'new bands stage' will be cooked up for appearance's sake at least.
A weekend pass for the très tasty Rock en Seine 2010 costs a trifling €99, and can be booked online from FNAC and other French ticket-pushers. The festival site is at the end of a Paris metro line and even has the LUAS passing by. On-site camping is available for three-day passholders and must be booked online: €45 for a two-person tent-space and €90 for the four of you.
Full details, including online ticket and campsite reservations, are available in English and French at the Rock en Seine website.
No French acts yet, so for the moment this is as French as Rock en Seine gets - LCD Soundsystem's 'Daft Punk Is Playing At My House':