Festival Preview: Neighbourhood 2017

Neighbourhood 2017

Vaious Venues: Manchester

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Words: Gary Lambert

Undoubtedly one of the highlights of 2016’s musical calendar was the inaugural presentation to the world of Manchester’s Neighbourhood Festival. A metropolitan festival in the middle of one of the world’s great music cities, it managed to instantly cement itself in the mind of Popped Music’s collective hive brain as one of the “Must See” events for the foreseeable future. This is a festival that has everything going for it. Headline bands that it makes your gut wrench to miss them; special events; more bars than you could visit on an all-day pub crawl; a bar that sells the most amazing cheese on toast with dipping soup known to man; and every genre and style of up-and-coming musical talent these shores of ours have to offer. It is a day of making decisions and living by them. Seriously, you will be faced with a mini-Glastonbury day of clashes and scampering between venues. You have to make decisions like Black Honey or Inheaven; The View or Ratboy; and queueing for Blossoms or getting stuck in to an all-day breakfast. It is unfair as a music fan that you are faced with these calls to make.


Our picks for this festival are not based around bands we like the sound of, but bands who we have watched in the name of new music in the last twelve months or so. Go to Neighbourhood, watch great not-so-famous-yet bands, mark it down on your calendar for next year, and remember that Popped Music told you to do it.



Judas (The Refuge @ 12:45-13:15)

This is probably not going to be a set for a music snob. Judas are definitely, in the best possible way, a standard 4/4 rock band, but they show why people turn up in thousands to watch such bands. A set at Live at Leeds earlier this year meant that the next chance I had to watch Judas I was going to take. They are energetic, ballsy, and basically guaranteed to make you enjoy the half hour. It’s going to be very early in the afternoon, let your ears have some fun before checking out the avant garde.

Find Judas on Facebook

Listen to Ceasefire here:


No Hot Ashes (The Bread Shed 14:30-15:00)

Now it would be wrong to not watch a hometown act whilst you’ve got so many gigs going on in Manchester, so why not give No Hot Ashes a try? Whilst they have the usual way around a lyric and a song structure that seems as Mancunian as JW Lees, the sound is more inspired by Happy Mondays with funky, wobbly basslines all over the shop. There should be a good crowd to watch them too which always helps to encourage bands to give a bit more.

Find No Hot Ashes on Facebook

Listen to Bellyaches here:


RedFaces (Factory 17:15-17:45)

I am convinced that if you watch this set at some stage you are going to feel a wow moment. I know I did during Dot 2 Dot at the start of summer. RedFaces might be missing a space in their name, but they make up for it with songs that you feel like you know already. If you are a regular reader of Popped Music, then you should know some of them, but they will give you the feeling of a festival staple band despite their career only starting. This is a band I am certain many people are going to fall in love with.

Find RedFaces on Facebook

Listen to Take It Or Leave It here:


Anteros (Factory 18:15-18:45)

A lot of the time, pop is a dirty word, but when pop has a dirty musical feel to it, then the game changes completely. This is where Anteros come in to their element. Check out Drunk if you don’t believe me. It is an absolute corker of a track, and I am certain that Anteros will play as well as they did at Festevol in Liverpool back in April where they made a cold wind coming off the river and chilled rain falling feel inconsequential to the warmth and power of their music.

Find Anteros on Facebook

Listen to Drunk here:



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