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Bearded Theory festival 2013

Mark Chadwick of The Levellers at Bearded TheoryKedleston Hall, Derbyshire 17-19 May 2013

Bearded Theory is, pretty much by definition, a party that got out of hand. It started out as a birthday bash, and is now in its sixth year as a music festival. Somewhere in among this tangled web of history is an obsession with beards, and on the Sunday they have an attempt at the world record for the most fake beards gathered in one place. Which is… definitely a thing. It’s also a sign that it doesn’t take itself too seriously – although everything’s handled incredibly professionally and there are few problems, there’s never a sense that anyone, including organisers and security, aren’t actually enjoying themselves at the same time.

Friday

New Model 

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The Levellers/Dreadzone/Back To The Planet (live at Brixton Academy)

Brixton Academy, London 18 December 2011

Brixton is a place that has changed a lot over the past twenty odd years. It feels very different now then when I lived (well squatted) there in the late eighties, at that time the riots had calmed down but there was still a sense of unease . It now feels less tense and has quite up-market café culture and some of the old dodgy pubs now seemed to have gone. But scratch the surface of the place and its past is still there just under its shiny new veneer. Somehow it seem quite apt that The Levellers would be celebrating twenty years of their album Levelling the Land here.

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The Levellers – Chaos Theory Live

Label: On The Fiddle/Proper Music Distribution Format: 2DVD (PAL)

Chaor Theory Live - sleeve detailThe Levellers are a bit like Marmite, really. You either love them or you can’t fucking stand them. I’m pretty much in the former camp, but, also like Marmite, I can go for ages without them. Then one day I’ll fancy some toast, and there’s nothing better. Sort of.

One thing The Levellers have always been is generous- long sets, free festival appearances… and this DVD is no exception. Well, these DVDs, really- Chaos Theory‘s a double, with a live gig at Reading Hexagon, and extras including an acoustic set among whose guests are Steeleye Span‘s Maddy Prior and Rev Hammer (occasionally part of Red Sky Coven with New Model Army‘s Justin Sullivan in case you haven’t heard of him, which you really should have- he’s fucking great).

The gig

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