The zone strikes again, as This Feeling take over Reading festival for one last rock’n’roll party of the summer. This Feeling and Jack Rocks have joined forces once more to put on what will easily be the best stage at the festival, featuring the best upcoming bands in the UK. A sick mixture of indie, post punk and garage bands, the tent is gonna be a raucous explosion of fresh talent. If you’re looking for future festival headliners, then the This Feeling tent is the place to be. And if you’re not sure which bands to check out, here’s Indie Underground’s bands to watch.
Palm Honey (Saturday, 12:00 pm)
A trippy blend of drugged up psychedelic rock and distorted indie, Palm Honey are musically and aesthetically a stunning live band. They have a screwy nostalgic 60s sound, very reminiscent of experimental bands like Cream and Pink Floyd. They use distortions and blurred amp effects to give their music a more soft trippy edge, full of hazy psychedelia. The band’s aura has a mesmerising finesse to it, and the guitar brings back a gritty bite which glides through that synthetic psychedelia.
BlackWaters (Saturday, 12:45 pm)
A raw post punk four piece, BlackWaters are proper rowdy on stage. Manic and hectic, they have a deranged intensity live, and Max’s voice is packed with post punk grit and rawness. They’re really heavy both on stage and on record, and live they have a really abrasive uncaring feel to their sound. Their music is mad and loud, and has a thrashing mosh pit-esque feel to it. Messy and full of a post punk vibrancy, BlackWaters create a hectic riot on stage which is always fucking class to be a part of.
The Assist (Friday, 12:45 pm)
The Assist are always insane live, blending indie and rock riffs with rapping and a more quirky hip hop vibe. Mikey raps over funky bass lines, and the band fuse a variety of genres perfectly. The way the band perform is really creative and unique, and the raw indie rock rap sound they have is perfect for dancing and grooving. It’s honest and open indie rap, with funky jazz elements to their sound. I love how they don’t stick to one genre, but instead transcend a vast number of musical genres. The experimental exploration the band have gives them a unique vibe which makes them extra fun to see live.
False Heads (Saturday, 3:50 pm)
False Heads are easily going to be the highlight of Reading this year. Tearing up every single stage they’ve ever graced, the three piece have a really tight solid sound to their sets, packed with deranged heaviness from Luke on lead guitar and Jake on bass. Barney’s drumming amplifies the band’s post punk riotous nature, and the anger and bitterness behind Luke’s lyrics make the band mental live. They’re full of raw passion and energy, and the grit and gravel to False Heads gives them a Nirvana-esque feel. They always blow me away each time I see them, and I can genuinely see them playing headline sets at Reading one day.
Breed (Saturday, 4:30 pm)
Blinding disordered rock band Breed are a killer four piece, the second generation of post punk rockers Jackals Rose. They’re full of heavy grit live with a really intense brooding edge, and Jake’s voice and charisma as a frontman is blinding. There’s this immense force the band have, both on record with tracks like Starman and Get With It, and on stage. The harsh rock grit they have gives their music a messy dirty edge, packed with raw rock’n’roll purity, and they’re KILLER live.
Rosko (Sunday, 9:40 pm)
Another one of my favourite live bands, Rosko are one of the quirkiest most interesting unique bands on the scene right now. They fuse indie, rock, hip hop, rap, reggae…pretty much every genre with a grimy gritty rock feel. Their riffs are meticulous and intricate, played perfectly in sync with the reggae style drumming. Bruce’s vocal has this accented bite too, giving the band a very cocky abrasive feel which I love. Live, they remind me a bit of Jamie T, and the intriguing unique sound the band have makes them one of my favourite groups around right now. A must see this weekend.
Anteros (Friday, 11:20 pm)
Anteros are a stunning band live, with a really fun indie rock/ pop aura to their music. Tracks like Cherry Drop and Drunk are insane live, with Laura’s voice gliding beautifully over the heavy gritty riffs. There’s something quite abrasive and arrogant about the band’s stage presence; their sound is ridiculously tight and polished, and the way Laura struts around on stage gives them this confidence and attitude which is infectious. I love the style and aesthetic to Anteros too; very fashionable and edgy, they’re stunning to watch live as well as to listen to. Their tracks blur the boundaries between indie rock and pop; there’s an anthemic feel to their choruses too, and I can see their set on the This Feeling stage as being a big stepping stone between where the band are now and inevitably bigger things to come.
Strange Bones (Saturday, 6:05 pm)
Heavy, uncaring, riotous punk is what Strange Bones are made of. The energy and heaviness the band have has a raucous sense of anarchy to it, especially live where Bobby puts his balaclava on midway through the set before diving into the crowd and crowd surfing. Tracks like Big Sister Is Watching have a nasty politicised bite, the band never swaying away from the riotous attitude and scepticism which is so key to punk. The nasty rawness to tracks like Spitfire and Pussy Galore’s Flying Circus make them an insane band on stage, with new track Energy unreal live too. Bobby’s rough screams paired with the dark heaviness of the guitar make them one of my favourite live bands; their set this weekend really is unmissable.
The Blinders (Saturday, 1:35 pm)
The Blinders are one of the best live bands around right now, fact. Their music is full of heavy distortions, pounding bass lines and lyrically brooding dark connotations. Their shows are hectic and manic, with a frenzied post punk aura to their sets. Looks and sound wise there’s a very cutting edge sense of political frustration, with lead vocalist Thomas wearing a shirt which said ‘the Tories are a bunch of cunts’ last time I caught them live (can’t disagree with that). Thomas on lead guitar and Charlie on bass is a lethal combination, resulting in vivacious heaviness which rips their stage to bits. If you’re into heavily politicised, abrasive cutting edge rock music then look no further than The Blinders; the dynamic vigour and energy they have is blinding, and their music is packed to the brim with a sensual DIY edge.
The Wholls (Friday, 2:25 pm)
A band who produce alt-rock, post punk music infused with rock rawness and a shot or two of Jack Daniels…The Wholls are maybe one of the coolest most exciting bands to have been picked up by This Feeling. I LOVE these lads. Their guitar sound is roaring, with raucous rock heaviness. The thing which makes their sound so intense and unique is that rough gravel of Tordy’s voice. There’s a gritty undertone which makes tracks like X21 and Take Jimi works of art. Their music is heartfelt, authentic rock’n’roll, and it’s packed with passion and spirit which make them phenomenal live. There’s something brooding and sensual to their tracks too, most of which have a mosh pit inducing aura.
Reading festival this summer has an unreal lineup, and aside from the This Feeling stage I’d recommend catching Marmozets, Black Honey, Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes, IDLES, LIFE, Cabbage, King Nun, and Tigercub