With music fans across the country still in Splendour fever, with all tickets to the three-day winter music festival now completely sold out as more and more sideshows get announced, the rumour and speculation has already begun turning to other festivals that are further down the pipeline, including Laneway Festival and its American expansion.
One that’s (slightly) closer than 2014 is November’s Harvest festival, and now thanks to the reunion dates from an influential art-folk act, a few official details for Harvest 2013 have begun to leak.
Just over a week ago, Neutral Milk Hotel announced they would be embarking on their first official reunion tour in some 15 years, and though only a handful of American dates were confirmed for October and Asian dates in November and December, The Vine promised that Australian dates could be expected from lo-fi folk pioneers very soon.
It’s been 15 long years since Neutral Milk Hotel released their last long player, In The Aeroplane Over The Sea, a cult album that invented countless scores of bands, and while ringleader Jeff Magnum has partaken in solo shows over the years, the 2013 reunion tour is the first in an age that will feature the classic 90s lineup with Scott Spillane, Julian Koster, and Jeremy Barnes.
As we first speculated, the gap between November’s Taiwanese date and the December 1st date in Japan led to a Harvest-sized hole in the band’s tour plans, turns out that’s exactly what’s filling the gap, with Pitchfork revealing Neutral Milk Hotel’s expanded reunion dates – including a three-date stopover in Australia for Harvest 2013.
Following a swathe of extra dates in October across North America, Jeff Magnum and co. will touch down in Melbourne on Sunday 10th November for Harvest at Werribee Park, followed by Sydney on Saturday 16th and then Brisbane the next day.
Following the initial announcement of the Neutral Milk Hotel reunion shows, enterprising fans began hitting up Harvest promoter AJ Maddah who, as FasterLouder points out, offered up the following cryptic message:
“Too late” for any other festival, since Maddah had already booked them for Harvest ‘months ago’. No surprise, as Maddah and his Harvest team have no doubt been busy behind the works for some time, especially given they already tried their hand at booking another popular reunion tour to make its way to Australia.
Following the 10 year anniversary of The Postal Service’s one and only record, 2003’s Give Up, Maddah told fans that he’d attempted to book the iconic indietronica duo of Benjamin Gibbard and Jimmy Tamborello for Harvest, but to no avail.
While Postal Service are definitely out, the Harvest boss told a follower that as of March, the festival already had “8 bands booked” for the November festival.
Given Neutral Milk Hotel is now a lock, a strong contender for another of the seven is indie Scots Franz Ferdinand, who let slip en route to the Chilean leg of Lollapalooza 2013 that they would be heading to Australia for a headline tour this November. Having recently completed a new studio album, the follow-up to 2009’s Tonight: Franz Ferdinand, they debuted new material at Lollapalooza Chile.
Based solely on the busy thumbs of AJ Maddah and his Twitter conversations, other potentials for the third Harvest outing would be reclusive Irish singer-songwriter Damien Rice, who “would be great for Harvest 2013,” while a suggestion that Philly rock band Mewithoutyou would return to our shores prompted Maddah to “invite them to Harvest right away!” He also told a user he would consider inviting Jack White too, and goth pioneers The Cure were on his personal wishlist for Harvest.
Harvest 2013 Dates
Sunday 10th November – Melbourne
Saturday 16th November – Sydney
Sunday 17th November – Brisbane
Neutral Milk Hotel 2013 Reunion Tour Dates
10-11 Baltimore, MD – 2640 Space at St. John’s Church *
10-12 Richmond, VA – The National *
10-14 Covington, KY – Madison Theater *
10-15 Urbana, IL – The Canopy Club *
10-18 Memphis, TN – Minglewood Hall *
10-19 Chattanooga, TN – Track 29 *
10-20 Birmingham, AL – Iron City *
10-22 Athens, GA – 40 Watt Club *
10-23 Athens, GA – 40 Watt Club #
10-24 Athens, GA – 40 Watt Club %
10-25 Asheville, NC – Thomas Wolfe Auditorium (Mountain Oasis Festival) #!
10-26 Atlanta, GA – The Tabernacle #
11-10 Melbourne, Australia – Harvest
11-16 Sydney, Australia – Harvest
11-17 Brisbane, Australia – Harvest
11-28 Taipei, Taiwan – Hostess Club Taipei
12-01 Tokyo, Japan – Hostess Club Weekender
* with Elf Power
# with Half Japanese
% with Circulatory System
! with Daniel Johnston