Festival Review: Outlines 2017

Outlines 2017

Sheffield 3rd – 4th March 2017

Words & Photos: Elena Katrina

Welcome to Festival Season 2017 – kicking off in early March (yes March!) with Sheffield’s Outlines Festival. The festival is put together by those awesome people behind Tramlines and has a massive focus on new and emerging music. So of course we made it our mission to get our behinds over to check out what it was all about and it was pretty damn good.

What we managed to see of it anyway – we missed Friday night, but we are told that we missed some absolute gems. Saturday though was still a day where we managed to catch some great bands and we were actually thrilled that when we arrived the sun was shining – always love a festival when the sun is out! Who doesn’t though! Upon arrival trying to navigate the way around a city you’ve only ever been to once, about 10 years ago, is always a bit of a nightmare so admittedly I missed yet some more bands while I walked entirely in the wrong direction for a good half an hour or so. But the main band we wanted to see on Saturday night was Banfi in the legendary Leadmill.

Banfi was an absolute treat and I was actually pleasantly surprised by the turn out – not as a reflection of the band or the festival- but because they are very new and they were on at 3pm, but luckily they had a decent crowd all there paying attention and enjoying their set. I loved that they played single Happy As You Go as it was the first time I’d heard it live. It actually felt more energized and the extended guitar break showed off their intensity and skill. I know for a fact they made some new fans that day and what more can you ask for from playing any show. Plus they made a bigger fan in me!

A scuttle across the city to Plug was then in order to catch our pals Clean Cut Kid. It’s getting to the point when they will probably get fed up of seeing my face grinning along as they perform. I’ve actually lost count of how many times I’ve seen them in the last 18 months but I just love seeing them and also love seeing their crowds grow and grow and become more and more enthusiastic. This set at Outlines was a difficult one for the band though; running late made them feel flustered and their set was riddled by technical difficulties – but unless you’d seen them… as many times as I have, you’d hardly have known they weren’t just having a ball as usual. With the band’s debut album, Felt, due out in a few months time it was an exciting week to have seen them play, so lucky us who did!

I admit I then stayed in Plug and roamed between rooms 1 and 2 and chilled out in a little seated area. I wasn’t all that keen on all of the acts but saw some really exciting sets from Girl Ray – who I absolutely loved. A new discovery for me having never seen them before they had a real buzz about them and the crowd was hefty too. Decent harmonies with some proper indie pop guitar feels, this sounds like the kind of band that might have signed to a label like Heavenly or Parlophone back in the 90s. I actually can’t wait to see them again. Especially because I’d love to shoot them and Plug 2 does not give you much of a chance to do that, at all, which made me a bit grumpy if I’m 100% honest, but that’s not really here nor there is it in the grand scheme of things – just means I am lacking in photos for you right now.

I have a little secret to tell you now – my time at Outlines wasn’t quite as I had hoped, and it was nothing to do with the festival – god no that was great – but turns out I have an infection in my tooth! By the time I was half way through the cracking set by Trash, I couldn’t actually stand the pain anymore and had to leave. As I walked back to my car (this time in the pouring rain, well it wouldn’t be the start of the UK festival season if it didn’t rain at all would it?) I thought through the lineup and the venues and all the great things that Outlines had to offer and already started to mentally plan my way around for 2018  – by which point I know I will have made a massive dent in working my way through those missed acts from this year’s lineup.

If you, like me, want to get in on the festival game early next year and love to see bands before they get booked on those bigger stages, then you’ll want to grab a ticket for next year’s Outlines Festival and at an earlybird rate of only £11 you might as well do that now – and you can – here!




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    Popped Music has been going since Feb 2010.

    All articles written by Elena Katrina unless otherwise stated.

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