THE Inland Sea of Sound festival is a work in progress.
The launch on Thursday of this year’s lineup of talent again revealed a broad mix of styles and experience.
The festival will bring together established music acts from around the country to perform alongside home-grown local talent spanning a wide range of genres including classic and alternate rock, folk, jazz, electronic and more.
This year’s biggest name act, The Cat Empire, brings a real music festival credibility to the event.
The Cat Empire has been selected to target a specific demographic – the young festival-goer who may have given the Inland Sea of Sound a miss in years gone by.
The other big name, Deborah Conway, will appeal to a different group.
Conway’s heyday was in the ’80s and ’90s and she will bring back the 40-something crowd that has previously gone along to ISOS to see the Black Sorrows and Bernard Fanning (pictured) perform live.
All of which might suggest the Inland Sea of Sound remains a festival still looking for an identity, but it must be given time.
In eight years Inland Sea of Sound has grown from a series of small backyard gigs to a two-night festival featuring some of Australia’s biggest music names, but there is still a long way to go.
But we should all be aware of just what a tough job the ISOS organisers face in trying to create a festival that can remain viable and popular in the long term.
Those difficulties are highlighted by the fact that even one of the biggest festival names in this country – Day on The Green – is no guarantee of longevity.
After several years of bringing such big-name acts as Hunters and Collectors. Hoodoo Gurus, Thirsty Merc and Baby Animals to Mudgee, Day on The Green will bypass that region this year due to concerns over a lack of support.
And it will be the same factor – support – that decides the long-term of success or otherwise of Inland Sea of Sound.
The Bathurst community must get on board because this region needs a music festival of its own.
And with a university at the foot of Mount Panorama, there is a ready-made music festival audience just waiting to be entertained by the right mix of acts.
As always, it’s a case of use or lose it. Get behind ISOS to ensure it’s still here for decades to come.