Five reasons Margate’s By The Sea festival will absolutely, resolutely bang

Count 'em

To Margate this weekend, as the third annual By The Sea festival descends upon the trendy seaside town. Step this way for action of the musical kind from the likes of The Libertines, Everything Everything, Metronomy and, oh, so many more. Most of the performances will take place at the Hall by The Sea, a stage in the town’s famed retro theme park, Dreamland, though there will be fringe shows all around Margate. Behold! Here are five reasons By The Sea will absolutely, resolutely bang.

Margate’s a beaut

The once-ailing seaside town resort has experienced a well-publicised renaissance in recent years; it now scales heights comparable to the big wheel that overlooks the town from Dreamland. Coastal Kent is now arty as fuck, thanks in part to the Turner Contemporary art gallery that opened in 2011 and the newly re-opened Dreamland, into which £25m was funnelled this year. A random rundown of awesome places in Margate: Cockles and Muscles, the drag club night spun-off from London’s glorious Sink the Pink; the killer record shop Transmission; and the rooftop bar Ziggy’s, which somehow feels exotic and tropical despite being in fucking Margate.

The Deep Throat choir will be there


First on at the Hall By The Sea stage on Saturday, the London group will bring their saucy moniker and perfectly harmonised near-a capella (there’s a tiny bit of percussion and guitar in there as well) to a town that truly understands them. After all, seaside folk know all about wrapping their lips around something salty.

You might spot a Libertine in the wild

Yes, we all long to witness Pete Doherty tottering along the beach with an ice cream in hand. Perhaps he’ll have himself a little flake, too. Maybe a sprinkling of hundreds and thousands and, yes, possibly a squirt of strawberry syrup for good measure. The man is not known for his restraint. Anyway, your chances of seeing such a sight have now increased exponentially, what with the news that Pete, Carl and the gang have bought a B&B in Margate. Readers, according to The Daily Mail, this B&B has previously been voted “the WORST in Kent” (capitals the Mail’s own). But don’t let that deter you: according to Carl, The Palm Court Hotel and Health Suite is to become “a hotel, bar, restaurant, recording studio” as soon as the band has “the planning permission”. Rock’n’roll!

There will be “Dodgem DJs”

Perhaps the Dodgem DJs will shout, “SCREEEAM IF YOU WANNA GO FASTER!” Perhaps they will call out to the universe: “SHABBA!” All we know is that A) commandeering dodgems with frankly reckless abandon to a soundtrack of banging tunes sounds like hella fun and B) Jarvis Cocker manned the decks last year. We’ll see you there and, with a bit of luck, inflict some bone-shuddering dodgem-violence upon you.

HMLTD will be legitimately quite frightening


Have you ever seen HMTLD live? People say they’re better live than on record, which is the kind of cliché reserved for new, buzzy bands – but in the south London group’s case, it is horrifyingly and brilliantly true. Onstage, their brand of proggy punk becomes a kind of vaudeville horror show, as the fabulously dressed six-piece leer menacingly at the audience, looking like they’re preparing to knock you down with a feather duster and rifle through your pockets. They’re real droogs, as Rhys from The Horrors recently pointed out to us, and everyone knows droogs are best when stalking seaside towns. Look out!