The internet is aflame! What is the source of this sordid soirée of swearing and sweat across the United Kingdom?
Gorillaz – our head honcho’s favourite band, and the world’s most successful animated outfit, have finally stepped an official Cuban heel from their West London door to announce a particularly special event.
2D, Murdoc, Noodle and Russel are officially off to Dreamland.
In an enormous venture, the band – egged on, no doubt, by long-time-collaborators Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewlett – are to hold their very own festival at the UK’s only Heritage Amusement Park – Dreamland, Margate. With three stages (full line up TBA), a vast array of food and drink stalls, full open amusements (including the world famous, 97 year old Scenic Railway) and the – as far as we currently know – first major public live show of Phase Four.
This has quite literally been years in the making, and has already provided a storm of excited press responses. But what do you actually need to know? Allow us to break it down for you…
Dreamland, Margate, is an independently run, coastal town centre heritage amusement park – the only one in the country – with a host of vintage, antique and practically ancient theme park rides from leisure periods past. It used to be one of the country’s number one holiday destinations, before the rise of the package holiday – and has now been restored into an almost whimsical caricature of theme park history. It’s becoming an increasingly popular venue for music festivals, and boasts some excellent transport links. We can’t think of anywhere quite as cool for Gorillaz to be! Expect popcorn, icecream, hot dogs and beer. The park is literally in the middle of town, approximately a drunken stumble from the train station.
The park has an event space capable of holding 15,000 people. Separate to this there’s a ballroom, roller disco space, corporate rooms and even VIP huts.
When is it happening?
June 10th, 2017. Doors open at 2PM and close at 10PM. Eight non-stop hours of monkey business. Based upon the usual status quo, we think there’ll be around three or four hours of live music. What will be filling the rest? Who knows. But we want on the Waltzers.
How much are tickets?
Base tickets – just for admission to the festival, full access of the Dreamland theme park and the numerous bars, stalls etc. are £60.
Priority tickets – for an extra £10, you can get into the park an hour earlier and see the sights of Dreamland and the festival quarters earlier than the peasantry.
Admission & Coach Zone 1 – For £85, you can catch the fabled steeds of the Demon Dayz coaches to and from Ashford or Canterbury – thus reducing traffic in the town centre and expanding your options for accommodation.
Admission & Coach Zone 2 – For £90, you can catch the aforementioned horseless carriages from Brighton, Crawley, Dartford, Eastbourne, Gillingham, Hastings, Maidstone or London Waterloo – and they’ll take you back, too, after the festival is over. This gives you a far greater chance of somewhere to stay or getting home. Not to mention that, as a Northerner, that basically sounds like the entirety of Southern England.
ALL TICKETS ARE NOW SOLD OUT
What’s the Line Up?
Gorillaz is as far as we’ve got. We’d guess at all of their past and present collaborators, too, but with such an eclectic range of influences, sounds and ideas under the band’s belt, it could quite literally be anything. There’s three stages, and across eight hours, that’s a potential goddamned ton of music. Early speculative nods are going to the likes of regular collaborators such as De La Soul – we pick them particularly as it’s a nice midway between the US and their dates in Barcelona a week later.
Wait, wasn’t Demon Days released in 2005? Is this just going to be Demon Days live?
No. Demon Dayz is just a good, catchy name for a festival. If you don’t get the new album performed from beginning to end, you’ll likely get an all-encompassing set from every phase of Gorillaz. As it’s such a special event, there may even be a surprise or two worked in.
What else can we expect?
God knows. Exhibitions? Music video premières? Meet and greets? There’s bound to be some element relating to the virtual group, and with a band carrying so much incredible visual history, it’d be very uncharacteristic not to provide some kind of glimpse into the characters. It must be remembered that this is no flash in the pan gig, this is a major event at a pretty huge venue with plenty of indoor areas, capable of holding hundreds of people. think big, and there’s every chance you’ll get it.
(That ballroom is perfect for an exhibition…)
How do I get there?
This is a little more complicated if you aren’t already from Southern England. The festival is laying on the aforementioned coaches, and there’s a park and ride system which you can book for a discount with your tickets. The town is only so big and restrictions are going to be in place to try and lift the strain from its infrastructure.
There’s trains to Margate from London during the day, but when the festival closes, the trains will be stopping, too. As a result, if you don’t have your own transport, or are trying to avoid paying coach fees, you should look for somewhere local to stay or a multi-hundred pound taxi fare…
Where will I stay?
There’s lots of local accommodation in Margate and the surrounding areas, and trains will continue to run to Dover and Canterbury. Most of it has been booked up for now, but cancellations are always likely. Look, we’ve tailored some links for you! Always be wary of places with bad reviews. British seaside hotels can be a bit rough at times.
When looking up your travel plans, remember – 14:00PM start, 22:00PM finish. Local trains will be running, but trains to London will not.
This is likely to be a one-off, once-in-a-lifetime event. Don’t miss it. We know we shan’t be!
Tickets sold out in an incredible ten minutes on Ticketmaster! Evidently Gorillaz have quite a following even after a six year absence.