Contrary to what Jon Snow says winter is leaving. I’m guessing it’s the same all round the world when winter recedes and spring pops up. Hope, energy and a sudden realisation we can be bothered to go out again. When the hedgehogs decide they want to get up and go out, we do too.
Historically, this hit me at Easter. From school holidays all the way though adulthood and all day drinking Easter is the gateway to the summer. The doom and bleakness of winter and the necessity of summer is never felt more in a seafront bar in Worthing.
Back in 2013 I decided to celebrate the onset of all things positive with a grassroots music festival. I named it Pangalactic due to our loose connection to Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy via our name 42 and our free birthday shot, the Gargleblaster. I knew enough bands to make it work and the cash would come in handy as the queue of creditors was longer than the queue of punters at the time. It was ambitious and I’d never done anything like it before but we smashed it. Headlining we had three of my favourites at the time, Collisions, Screama Ballerina and The Watermelons. I didn’t realise at the time we would go on to provide that kind of quality week in, week out in the coming years. It was the start of the bold decision making that has seen the bar survive an eventful few years since.
The tricky second year was only held back by constant rain and a bunch of bands pulling out on the Sunday but we were back in form for Pangalactic 2015 when the bar was a joy to behold on all five days. The main three days were particularly busy.
So now it’s Pangalactic 2016. Curbing my natural instinct to go bigger I’ve kept to the same formula as previous years. When the quality around is such there is no need to look further than the ones we know for the purposes of making a statement. These bands make the statement for us all we have to do is provide a stage and some booze.
The event kicks off on the only Thursday of the year that’s not a school night, the one before Good Friday. Local hero Greg Vernon hosts a night of some of the best young bands on the grassroots circuit headlined by Battle of the Bands Finalist, The Lazzeretts. Friday is traditionally the heaviest day and this year has 6 previous weekend headliners playing. King Leviathan being the headliner on the day but with others such as Bleed Again, Core Of iO, Derelict Dream and a very special guest band it’s going to be a great day. Saturday is for rock fans and will be headlined by Scout Killers who travel all the way from the West Country, we have a tour package with Go Primitive and Cardinal Bay, both awesome on their first visit and a bunch of locals including Graces Collide, Igloo and Vega. Sunday is the lighter day headlined by the epic Doppler Shift with support from London-based Hvman along with staunch locals Imbium. Others include Friars Lantern making the short trip from Brighton. Monday is an experimental afternoon with a spot of punk as presented by Train of Thought and Disconcert who do plenty on the Worthing and Brighton circuit.
If you come to all the days you’ll see a gradual decline in my health due to constant visits to Bookers, too much fast food and too many 13 hour days in a row. I almost dread it because of the work it involves but on completion I can see only positives regarding the music scene in this town and the increasing foothold the bar is getting in the local community. I sleep well on Bank Holiday Monday. Usually until Thursday!
Getting visitors from Brighton is always nice too and if you’ve not been before this event makes it worth the visit.
Thursday 24th March to Monday 28th March
Thursday – £2 Doors at 7pm, First band at 7.30pm
Friday/Saturday/Sunday – £2 until 6pm, £4 after Doors at 1pm, first band at 2pm
Monday – Free starts at 3pm
Weekend wristbands – £6
Facebook – Mark Knowles or Forty Two Worthing