When: Thursday 17th May – Saturday 19th May
Where: Across 35 venues in Brighton
The annual seaside showcase and new music mecca, The Great Escape returns to Brighton next weekend.
Like some sort of SXSW on the Sussex coast, The Great Escape has made a name for itself as the festival for new music. Not surprising considering over 450 emerging artists from all over the world will be hitting its stages from DIY dive bar, Green Door Store to the more grand setting of the Grade I listed Brighton Dome.
Post-Eurovision, pop fans will be pleased to hear that the Netherlands are this year’s lead international partner at the event with sets from a slew of homegrown talents; bedroom beatmaker Naaz, Amsterdam-born folk songstress Pitou and guitar slackers and Breeders touring buddies, Pip Blom.
If that’s not enough to get stuck into, we’ve rounded up our top selects to catch across the weekender (when we’re not scoffing 99s by the seafront, mind!)
The brainchild of one-half of twee indie kids Slow Club and all parts Rebecca Taylor, Self-Esteem is fuelled by the singer’s experiences on the road with a band she loved but was no longer the place for her creativity. Lead single ‘Your Wife’ has the bedrock beats of Taylor’s drumming days with the duo and a new electro-front fuelled by Django Django’s Dave Maclean’s polished production.
Self-Esteem perform at John Peel favourite, Prince Albert on Saturday night.
It’s ironic really that in recent single ‘Cool’, Nashville native Sophie Allison is longing for some kind of street cred. Despite performing under the decidedly less hip alias, Soccer Mommy she sure knows how to effortlessly turn out a captivating chorus. Much like the creekside cadences of Waxahatchee, her delicate strums and soothing harmonies bleed through your headphones into a whirling summer haze.
Soccer Mommy kicks off the weekend at the Beach Club on Thursday night.
It’s hard to be at a seaside weekender and not enjoy the symbolism of Canadian quartet, The Beaches but this band is more than just apt. Since their support slot in the UK alongside raspy-voiced punk icon, Brody Dalle back in 2014, they’ve been busy on their debut, Late Show; a suckerpunch to the chops when it comes to bludgeoning rock and roll beats and snarls.
Catch them early at DIY indie bar, Green Door Store on Thursday.
That Nordic lot seem to be brimming over with the elixir for artful electronica, don’t they? Norwegian newcomers, Sassy 009 are no exception. Former single, ‘Are You Leaving?’ (a taster from EP, Do You Mind) is heavy with lovelorn lyricism and artful eccentricities like that flitting flute riff. This is Scandi-minimalism, shaken not stirred.
Dance the night away to Sassy 009’s mystical minimalism on Friday night at Komedia.
What happens when you mix the frantic fight pop of indie kids, Dananananaykroyd and the bubblegum brilliance of Aussie yelpers, Operator Please? Bossy Love is said lovechild with Amandah Wilkinson and John Baillie Jnr coming together over a shared love of RnB jams and a knack for club bangers. Stick on their debut ‘Sweat It Out’ and get those hips in place for a bloody good time.
Get down in the afternoon delight with the band on Friday at One Church.
Childish sniggers aside, Chester trio Peaness handle some right on topics with EP track ‘Ugly Veg’ tackling green issues and food waste. The band has been hurtling across the UK on multiple tour supports with everyone from fellow Northerners The Cribs to Fortuna Pop’s The Spook School so their set should be primed to indie pop-perfection.
Kick back with Peaness at Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar on Saturday night.
In an online age where women and girls are continually pushed towards ‘beach ready bodies’, LA quartet The Regrettes are a group of friends ardently trying to dispel this destructive nonsense. Former single, ‘A Living Human Girl’ is Shangri-Las swagger with a Kate Nash sneer as vocalist and guitarist, Lydia Night chimes: “An ass full of stretch-marks / And little boobs / A nice full belly that’s filled with food”.
An apt weekend finale, The Regrettes take hold of Horatio’s on Saturday night.