Small but perfectly formed – Nozstock 2014

Small but perfectly formed – Nozstock 2014

Nozstock was a festival we had heard little about, we knew only two of the acts playing, but thought what the hell, we wanted a festival, we had an opportunity and we were going!

Nozstock was a big annual party that had developed into a ‘real’ festival with a ‘rural slice of English eccentricity’ thrown in for good measure. Billed as ‘Jurassic Farm – the land that Noz forgot’.


We were a group of two, an old hand Glastonbury festivaler and me, a festival novice determined to get my stripes. Not only was it going to be compared to the behemoth of Glastonbury, but it also had to appeal to our widely differing musical tastes. My fellow reveller likes dance, I like anything but.

Did it deliver, did it ever… The land that Noz forgot, is definitely one we wont – we promise.

The Fun Loving Criminals, were headlining Friday night. All I can say is we loved you in the rain (yes, I got my rain), you were phenomenal and you have two new groupies. We followed this with Craig Charles who kept us going into the early hours of Saturday as we hit the slightly wet ground running.


With the rain holding off and a bowl of granola (another tick in the festival box) from Ma Muesli, we took in the venue and wandered stage to stage until we got to the Bandstand with Jefferson Duke. You are indeed my newest crush with your indie-folk on stage constructions, but it was ASBO Disco who got our party going in the evening. Roots Manuva headlining Saturday may have been a bit off kilter (or was that me after my gong bath) but great all the same. Disco Panther, we missed you on the Orchard stage with your Funk Disco grooves – next time, we will be there. Sunday was a chilled out affair but, Collective 43, you gave me ‘fever’ on a Sunday afternoon and would’ve ‘all through the night’ had we not been heading back to London.

Gypstep, funk, soul, hip hop, psytrance, drum n bass, indie and some good old guitar music across 9 different stages kept us enthralled throughout the weekend. We learnt Electric-swing, albeit one of us by a campfire, the other in full swing with a Singapore sling! And who knew that folk works with so many other genres – hip hop folk, indie folk, folk pop, psych-folk, folk-punk to name a few…

Nozstock, stay just as you are with a great and diverse musical array framed in an idyllic setting filled with cavemen, stilt walkers, dinosaurs, hula hoopers and the odd grandparent with their grandchildren. Add to this in some top notch comedians (Cardinal Burns, yes you!), a bit of theatre, some fireworks and random activities such as sock wrestling, mushroom making (yes, we both came back having sanded out mushrooms from bits of wood, but it could so easily have been a willow star), and a dusting of tai chi, gong baths (tried and tested), meditation and 14 muscle body balance (emotional!) who needs Glastonbury. You get an intimate, friendly festival where the music is great and new and upcoming acts get chance to shine, people are chilled and you don’t get ripped off. The site of the festival is in a beautiful part of England and compact enough to be able to walk around it in 20 minutes – you try saying that at Glastonbury.


So, finally I got my festival stripes along with a hat, some friendship bracelets, a rug and a wooden mushroom.  The theme of Nozstock may have been ‘The Jurrassic land that time forgot’ but our weekend at Nozstock 2014 will most defiantely not be one we forget.  Bring on 2015…


By guest writer Melissa Haynes.
Photos Courtesy of Melissa Haynes.

Denny Armatrading

is a massive music fan and has been writing professionally about it since 2009. Graduating from University in Digital Arts & Design for Interactive Media, Denny has years of experience working online in various areas. Music is his passion and his work.