Latitude 2019 – Sunday Highlights Part 1

It’s Sunday and Latitude 2019 may nearly be over, but before we wave goodbye to Henham Park for another year we have one last day of cracking performances ahead of us.

In our Sunday Highlights Part 1 you can rejoice to the sounds of The Kingdom Choir, discover Black Mirror secrets in the Charlie Brooker Q&A, see Rankin at work, swoon to Cat Power, have many jokes and jeers with our comedy headliner Frank Skinner and much more.

The Kingdom Choir

What better way to start Sunday morning at Latitude than with The Kingdom Choir. It’s been a bit of a whirlwind for the choir following their performance at the Royal Wedding earlier in the year.

Taking to the Obelisk Arena stage, their smiles radiate from the front row all the way to the back as they kick off proceedings with a divine cover of Stormzy’s ‘Blinded By Your Grace’.

The Kingdom Choir deliver their note perfect harmonies on tribute medleys, such as to the late great Aretha Franklin, and on iconic songs like ‘Lean On Me’.

Musical director Karen Gibson is charming and embraces the crowd’s enthusiastic voices with ease. The world is paused for a moment as The Kingdom Choir’s beautiful collection of voices lift the crowd through the medium of gospel.

Charlie Brooker

Expectations are high for our Q&A with Black Mirror’s Charlie Brooker and Annabel Jones, and rightfully so, as it delivers a treasure trove of titbits about the show. It kicks off with the duo discussing Bandersnatch – the pioneering interactive episode of the show set in 1984. Jones admits it was a challenge to produce as they had to secede control to the viewers for the first time. Thanks to its branching narrative, Brooker exclaims that there’s over five and a half hours of footage, including a whole section which thanks to some last minute changes, no one can access.

When pressed on the show’s often eerie prophetic nature with the real world, Brooker says he’s sometimes surprised at their accuracy. However, he says that they often taking inspiration from real-world events and, after putting them together, there’s always a possibility of it happening.

The biggest question comes when they’re asked to choose their favourite Black Mirror episode. Jones is pragmatic, saying “it’s like with your children, you can’t pick one”. “Yes you can!”, Brooker immediately blurts out whilst smirking. He instantly says his favourite episode is ‘San Junipero’ as it made him write outside of his usual comfort zone for the first time. Leaving the Music and Film Arena, we all know what episode we’ll be rewatching after Latitude.

Rankin

There is a sense of anticipatory fever spreading through The Faraway Forest today, as the world-renowned photographer Rankin is poised to take photos of the festival crowd in a pop-up portrait studio.

All around people are clamouring for a look of this genius at work, even Rankin’s assistants look truly in awe of the spectacle that is unfolding. Rankin is posing individuals and recreating some of his most well-known celebrity photographs to truly capture the heart of the people who make Latitude such a beloved festival.

Some members of the crowd are huge fans of Rankin’s work and say it has inspired them to also pick up a camera and start exploring the world of photography. Others, are here to witness the man responsible for portraits of their favourite musician and, the two sides to this coin, are eagerly discussing both of these passionate aspects with great animation.

Staying an hour longer later than planned, Rankin’s visit to Latitude 2019 is one that stand out in our history.

The Guilty Feminist

Iconic podcast The Guilty Feminist is a staple of Latitude, and host Deborah Frances-White a seasoned comedic veteran. However, today’s guest is none other than comedian London Hughes – a vibrant and no holds barred star on the rise.

London’s anecdotes are almost too good to be true as she regales, to an to in awe Frances-White, the time she got high at Diplo’s house and had to be saved from getting a tattoo by none other than Leonardo DiCaprio.

The pair are being interpreted by the very talented BSL staff, whom London delights in asking for a plethora of smutty words – providing a learning experience for the entire audience, that is between all the bouts of rapturous laughter.

There is also an appearance from musician Nadine Shah who takes aim at the boring old men’s club of ‘legendary musicians’ as she feels there is little, to no female equivalency. Today’s podcast recording will no doubt go down as one of Frances-White’s finest performances, as the trio end with a very hilarious rendition of Gloria Gaynor’s, ‘I Will Survive’.

Drahala

Drahla are a hard band to pin down, which is all part of the fun. The Leeds-based trio flutter through their influences with an assured looseness: there’s elements of the burgeoning UK jazz scene, all offbeat drums and experimental melody lines. Then there’s hints of the dark and brooding rock of the 80s underpinning things as they get heavy. Or, there’s the aggressive punk stylings for when they want to make things really hectic.

They’re the exact type of band who gain a massive crowd by pricking the ears of those passing by The Lake Stage with their singular sound. Dozens at the back take notice with an inquisitive look as they’re about to stroll elsewhere, before diverting from any plans they may have had to head down to the join the swelling throng.

The desire to eke out their tunes to form expansive soundscapes make this an intriguing gig for the newly converted – you’re never really sure where they’ll go next. The moment you think you gain an idea of where their songs are headed, they go down an unexpected path to keep you on your toes.

You really know you’ve got a seal of approval when you get a little headbang from the nearby gate security. Drahla, security staff approved.

Cat Power

Laying down in the sun soaked surrounds of the Obelisk Arena there are few people who would not recognise the syrupy voice washing over them. Cat Power’s idiosyncratic talent is undeniable and it’s a gift to be savoured on this Sunday afternoon.

Standing centre stage, dressed head to toe in black Cat Power is a formidable force as her velvety tones are maximised by the two microphones she holds. Live, the tender acoustic refrains of ‘Me Voy’, taken from her latest album, ‘The Wanderer’, are emboldened with the full backing of her band to overflow with a longing and desperation that cannot be quenched.

Cat Power’s sets are renowned for their eclecticism and today’s show doesn’t disappoint. There’s ‘Metal Heart’ and ‘Say’ from Moon Pix and iconic album title track ‘The Greatest’ and ‘Hate’ from the same record. After ‘Say’, Cat Power laments that, “these songs are sad, they make me sad when I’m singing them” although we can’t help but feel that we’re glad she’s shared them.

Cat Power’s love of covers is still burning strong as she includes a version of our headliner Lana Del Rey’s track, ‘White Mustang’. There also a cover of Frank Ocean’s ‘Bad Religion’, as haunting as the original, and a foray into INXS’ ‘Never Tear Us Apart’.

It’s the last show on the band’s tour and as Cat Power closes the set she says, “It’s a honour to see you and exchange energy and emotions”. We can’t help but hope we can do it again soon.

Frank Skinner

Frank Skinner has been king of the comedy game for over 30 years now, so naturally his material has changed somewhat from the heady days of Fantasy Football. His subjects of choice in the 90s like lager and women have been replaced by family life and having an older body, but Skinner macabre wit or keen eye for observation remains as sharp as ever.

Stories spin off as he describes sitting on the bus and seeing a man comes on with an empty wheelchair and pondering the reasons why. His theories range from benefit scrounging to more twisted interpretations, both keep the laughter keeps coming like chuckling freight train.

Skinner opts not to talk about Brexit, instead positing that the day democracy really died was the day they vetoed the result on Boaty McBoatface. He’s also full of admiration for our BSL interpreters signing the name perfectly, causing him to say it over and over and over.

His many anecdotes include acting out, in full impression mode, the revelation that Bob Dylan is bad at charades and the unexpected advantages of becoming a dad at 52. Towards the end of the set Skinner treats us to some new skits, including an impression of a seagull having an existential crisis.

Ending with another bird related joke about being petrified of catching a falcon, Skinner seems genuinely surprised to be closing the Comedy Arena for another year. After laughing so much, we couldn’t imagine it any other way.

Frank Skinner


In our Sunday Highlights Part Two we’ll be catching you up on all of the action from Sigrid, Talk Art , Pale Waves, Chvrches, Slaves and, of course, our final Latitude 2019 headliner Lana Del Rey.

 


Latitude 2019 Highlights

Thursday Highlights

Latitude 2019 got off to a spectacular start with the National Theatre Live’s screening of War Horse, a secret set by Frank Turner, phenomenal flamenco from Jesús Carmona, and a jaw-dropping opening procession by The Elders.

Find out more