• Emma Bristow

Festival Spotlight: Reading/Leeds

Reading is a festival that everyone always remembers, albeit not always for good reason, with noses turned up at the memory of the campsite ‘toilets’ (spoiler alert: it’s actually just a giant, smelly cesspit) and the overly priced food trucks that leave you feeling more thirsty than they do full. But despite all of its faults, Reading is still a good weekend and is something that I look forward to every year. - For one, the atmosphere is just amazing; swarms of people all out for a good time, all-seeing their favourite acts, drunk-belting the words out until they sing themselves hoarse, and for two, the freedom you feel from just being there. Being out in the middle of a giant field, surrounded by your mates, with no cares in the world. Just good music, good people and (hopefully) good weather. This year the setup is going to be a little different to normal, with two main stages rather than the usual one, though the organisers have promised no clashes between the headliners, so get in to see your faves EARLY, as they do restrict the number of people allowed up close to the main stage for health and safety reasons.

So, which acts am I looking forward to seeing most now that Reading's being given the green light to go ahead this year?

In terms of the artists performing, Post Malone never disappoints. I’ve seen him both of the times he’s headlined Reading, and both of those times he’s been one of my favourite performances of the whole weekend. He captivates and hypes up the crowd superbly, and always plays the songs that everyone knows, further adding to the atmosphere. Known for his iconic fag in one hand, beer in the other, be sure to check his set out on Saturday evening! Also up there with the other artists’ sets, I’ll definitely be attending this year are: Stormzy (did you see that incredible Glastonbury performance?!), Beabadoobee (her support for The 1975 didn’t even feel like you were watching a support act), and The Wombats (they’ve given a solid performance at Reading every year without fail).

On the flip side of that, Liam Gallagher, albeit iconic, has no stage presence at all. He rarely interacts with the crowd and just stands in the same spot the entire time, leaving everyone feeling a bit lacking. Lewis Capaldi, again whilst iconic, I’m not entirely sure how his slow, love ballads are going to be able to match the energy of a (usually) very intoxicated crowd who love to mosh. - If you’re into moshing, I would suggest giving him a miss, too.

Overall, Reading is a festival that’s constantly changing; going from a Blues festival in the 60s to the more mainstream acts it hosts now, it’s this versatility that keeps it fresh and keeps people like me coming back year after year.

Edited by Jemma Snowdon

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