The festival season may be slowly winding down for the year but one of the biggies is still to take place – the legendary Leeds and Reading Festival. Since there’s so much going on over the weekend with so many genres of music being represented, we thought we give you a few of our recommendations for each individual stage, starting with The Pit and The Lock Up. Don’t go missing any of these…
After making their long-awaited return to these shores last August for Hevy Fest, Thrice are back for 3 UK dates as part of their European tour in support of this year’s ‘To Be Everywhere Is to Be Nowhere’. Their warm-up show in London and appearances late in the day on The Pit Stage at Leeds and Reading provide lucky fans with the first opportunity in years to hear new live material from the 4 piece. Being masters of the bone crunchingly heavy, the beautifully ambient and everything in-between, their set is sure to be one of the highlights of the weekend for many. The band have been quite open about touring much less since their reformation so take the chance whilst it’s there!
It would be too easy to assume that SWMRS (the cool, vowel-less spelling of Swimmers, obviously) have made it this far through well-known connections but a few listens to their debut album, ‘Driving North’, and you’ll be persuaded otherwise. Okay, the fact that drummer Joey Armstrong is the son of a certain Billie Joe of Green Day has definitely helped along the way but SWMRS have been working away for over half a decade under various names before releasing their first effort under their new moniker this year. Their brand of summery & quirky west coast pop-punk with indie sensibility is perfect for the smaller tents at a festival, go and see for yourself.
Milk Teeth have had quite the year. After building up anticipation in 2015 with some great single, the band released the GIGsoup (and many others) acclaimed ‘Vile Child’ in February and haven’t looked back since. Their 90s-tinged grunge has captured the UK’s attention and led them to a European tour with Title Fight and a US jaunt with Citizen and Turnover. All very impressive! Other than a support slot with the aforementioned Thrice and a September appearance at Bestival, this weekender is the only other remaining date pencilled in for the group this year so, if you haven’t already (and even if you have), be sure to check in on them on The Pit Stage.
Last year, for all the right reasons, Philadelphia rockers Modern Baseball pulled out of this very festival. Co-frontman, Brendan Lukens’ battle with depression came to a head resulting in him seeking treatment and the band cancelling their tour plans. Thankfully, Lukens, with the help of bandmates and others, is back and in a much more positive frame of mind. The quartet have released ‘The Perfect Cast EP’ as well as the brilliant album ‘Holy Ghost’ since those events of last year with both releases tackling mental health head on – they would have been vital to see last year and this year will certainly be no different with a set guaranteed to be full of anthemic singalongs.
The Lock Up Stage – Friday @ Leeds // Sunday @ Reading
With the September release of James Alex’s men’s second full length just around the corner, fans of these feel-good Philadelphians (Yep, that place again) will be hoping for a few more tasters from ‘A Loud Bash of Teenage Feelings’. We’ve already been treated to ‘Punks in a Disco Bar’ from the follow up to 2015’s ‘The Things We Do to Find People Who Feel Like Us’ and, by all accounts, the new record sounds to be following in a similar vein to their stellar debut. Anyone that has witnessed frontman James Alex’s boundless energy on stage will testify that theirs is a set not to be missed – you will walk away smiling, the positivity is as infectious as the songs themselves.