Punk bands with their punk vans at 2000trees

Punk bands with their punk vans at 2000trees
Chris Bethell takes Gloucestershire’s best independent music festival to capture ZULU, Cancer Bats, Brutus and more in the comfort and chaos of their tour vehicles.

Imagine, if you will, a music festival where the ‘experience’ is simply… live music. A festival that goes beyond the modern economy of yoga classes, oxygen bars and axe throwing and simply books a load of sick bands to play in a field for a laugh. That festival is 2000trees.

Created in 2007 by six friends, 2000trees has been a bastion of independent music for 16 years. Booking the best new and established underground artists across pretty much every rock subgenre you could think of, its fan-friendly, community-first ethos has only grown more determined with time, sitting in stark contrast to the rapid corporatisation of live music at large and earning it a reputation as one of the best festivals in the UK. As their manifesto proudly states: “Trees is more than an event. It’s a family gathering based on positive community values.” As Huck proudly states: it bangs.

Held on Upcote Farm against the rolling Cotswold Hills, actually getting to 2000trees is a delightful pilgrimage in and of itself. Whether by bicycle, a beat-up Peugeot 107 or a fully-equipped tour bus, everyone’s gotta get there by some mode of transport – the only difference for the artists playing is that, for better or worse, they’re probably living in theirs.

After capturing bands with their vans at Manchester Punk Festival, Chris Bethell headed to this year’s 2000trees to photograph ZULU, Cancer Bats, Witch Fever and more in the comfort and chaos of their temporary homes on wheels.

Cancer Bats

Latest on Huck

In photos: Three decades of Glastonbury Festival’s people and subcultures
Photography

In photos: Three decades of Glastonbury Festival’s people and subcultures

A new photobook explores the unique cultural experience and communal spirit found at the UK’s largest festival.

Written by: Isaac Muk

Surreal scenes from the streets of Tokyo
Photography

Surreal scenes from the streets of Tokyo

A new book by photographer Feng Li uses images of strange encounters to explore the historical centre of street photography.

Written by: Isaac Muk

Re-enchanted England: Exploring Paganism and Folklore
Culture

Re-enchanted England: Exploring Paganism and Folklore

A new book dives into the ancient traditions and rituals that many are turning to in an age of uncertainty, crisis and climate breakdown.

Written by: Thomas Andrei

Inside London’s Museum of Sex
Culture

Inside London’s Museum of Sex

For two days only a derelict house in south east London will become a hub of artwork exploring eroticism, sexuality, gender, and the body.

Written by: Brit Dawson

Why is Neil Diamond’s mega-hit ‘Sweet Caroline’ so intoxicating for sports fans?
Outdoors

Why is Neil Diamond’s mega-hit ‘Sweet Caroline’ so intoxicating for sports fans?

During this summer’s edition of the Euros, one certainty is the ubiquity of Diamond’s 1969 hit. But how and why did it gain such a storied place in England fans’ hearts? Jimmy McIntosh investigates.

Written by: Jimmy McIntosh

Can things only get better, again?
Election 2024

Can things only get better, again?

With the re-emergence of D:Ream’s euphoric 1993 hit and a ’97 style Labour landslide looking likely, Hannah Ewens dives deep into the creation of Cool Britannia, and asks experts whether it could be repeated again.

Written by: Hannah Ewens

Sign up to our newsletter

Issue 80: The Ziwe issue

Buy it now