Jupiter Rising: Jupiter Artland, Edinburgh
27th to 29th August 2021
Jupiter Artland has been a favourite day-trip location of mine for many years. A fabulous, predominantly outdoor, gallery just outside the city centre of Edinburgh that positions contemporary art within epic landscaping and eerie woodlands. As a venue for a music and arts festival it couldn’t get much better, and with only 1,000 tickets being sold across the 125-acre gardens it might also be the perfect post-pandemic boutique festival experience.
Kicking off on Friday afternoon with a performance of Lovey and Boy, the lineup across the weekend is packed with a pleasingly eclectic collection of artists from anarchic electro-noise master Lady Neptune to longstanding DJ favourites Optiomo, jazz-punk duo Guttersnipe and Glasgow DIY indiepoppers Nightshift.
Where the larger Scottish festivals tend to cater to the Texas/Proclaimers/Paolo Nutini demographic or almost exclusively ship in middleweight mainstream indie bands from elsewhere, the programme for Jupiter Rising promises to have a well-balanced mix of up and coming, critically acclaimed and more established artists, both local and from further afield. It’s a lineup that shines a welcome spotlight on the many new and exiting things happening in the Scottish music scene without becoming a tartan ghetto.
Interestingly, and unusually, the festival has also commissioned some of the musicians to create new works in response to the landscape itself, and I am eager to see the results of this more integrated and thoughtful approach to a live music event. I love that this level of consideration has been put into incorporating the year-round mission statement of Jupiter Artland itself into the festival, making it more than just another big field with bands in it.
Whether you are solely interested in the music or are also a fan of the visual arts, there is a lot going on over the three days and I can’t imagine many people won’t be able to find something to enjoy. However, if you need any further encouragement please see my top tips below…
5 Things Not To Miss At Jupiter Rising
Previously featured as my single of the month, Edinburgh’s own sardonic son mixes expertly crafted pop sensibility with low-key nihilism to create the kind of misery-bops that sit somewhere in a strange lineage between Arab Strap, Lou Reed and Mark E Smith.
Cinematic synth soundscapes and housey disco bangers with a chic and retro Euro vibe.
Don’t let the sonically laid backs vibes fool you, this lyrically uncompromising rapper and vocalist is not for the faint hearted.
Not just the best name on the bill, this saxophonist and spoken word artist creates music with a melodic, thoughtful and melancholic soul that I’m really looking forward to hearing live.
Chaotic karaoke courtesy of Bent Fest co-founder and ‘international super-nobody’ Ruby Waters. This may not be the most tuneful event of the weekend but it’s bound to be fun!
The full programme and additional information can be found at jupiterrising.art.
Featured photography by Greta Leeloo and Ally Wight.
All words by Susan Sloan. More of her work for Louder Than War is available on her archive. Find her on Instagram as @thesmureviews and view Susan’s website here.