This year's Manchester Punk Festival is fast approaching and it's safe to say that Emma and I are quite excited to attend for another year. Over the past few months the organisers, the fine people from TNSrecords, Moving North and Anarchistic Undertones, have been putting together a fine roster of bands for the festival to make it bigger than ever. The calibre of bands that they've managed to book this year is ridiculous, especially considering this is only the third year of the festival. Over the next two weeks Emma and I will pick ten of the bands that we are most looking forward to seeing. Here's my top ten.
I was so pleased when Strike Anywhere were announced for MPF. I was hoping to see them at The Fest last year but sadly missed out due to clashes. I'll make sure that's not the case at this festival. It's the legendary Richmond, Virginia bands first trip to the UK in seven years and you know it will be well worth the wait.
Canadian hardcore band Brutal Youth had a massive year in 2016 following the release of their new album Sanguine and look set to continue the wave of momentum that they are riding into 2017 with a tour of Europe. Being one of the most talked about bands of the moment, it's pretty clear that Brutal Youth will be one of the not to be missed bands at MPF.
I think I'm right in saying that Clowns are the first Australian band to play at Manchester Punk Festival. I've been listening to a lot of punk from Australia recently and Clowns are one of the bands that really stood out. Their fast paced, aggressive hardcore really catches your attention and I'm sure that the energy that explodes out of the recordings will translate brilliantly to the stage.
Essex's finest The Filaments are returning to Manchester Punk Festival for the first time since headlining the first festival in 2015. I believe that it will be my first time seeing them since that festival as well, so it will be well overdue. The ska punks have been going for years now and have earned a reputation for being one of the most ferocious live bands around, whilst keeping a lot of their Essex charm.
Dutch punks Sweet Empire make a welcome return to the UK. The four friends started Sweet Empire in 2008 and have since gone on to create some of the most unique sounding tunes in the world of skate punk. There is also a big socially aware side to Sweet Empire with topics of abortion, religion, the environment and politics all raised in the band's music.
Last year these legendary Canadian punks released what was considered by many to be an album of the year contender. A pretty good achievement from a band that had actually split up in 2005 and only decided to start writing music together again in 2014. Revenge Of The Fifth is already considered a classic by their fans and this chance to see the band reunited, and seemingly at the top of their game, is not one to be missed.
Jakal are a ska, punk, reggae, dub band from London who I've been aware of for years but have never gotten around to seeing - this will finally change at MPF! Something that really helps set Jakal apart from many of the other fantastic ska bands in the country is the dual vocals of Plug and Tali. If you like bands such as King Prawn, Operation Ivy or Sublime you're going to love Jakal.
ONSIND are a long time favourite of mine and any chance to see them live is not an opportunity to miss. The duo are celebrating their tenth year as a band in 2017 so a first time appearance at Manchester Punk Festival seems appropriate. Expect sing-a-longs so loud that you won't actually be able to hear the band when you go to see ONSIND.
The Human Project
The Human Project are one of the stand out bands in the burgeoning UK melodic punk rock scene. Returning this summer with a brand new album, the Leeds four piece look set to have a massive year in 2017. One of the most exciting live bands on the circuit, The Human Project's technical skill is only matched by their energetic performances.
The Living Daylights
No festival is complete without a reunion set and MPF has one from Lincoln's The Living Daylights. After splitting in 2012, The Living Daylights are back with two special shows to celebrate ten years since the formation of the band. I love the nostalgia that a reunion show brings and hearing so many great The Living Daylights songs again will put a great big smile on my face.
I CAN'T WAIT FOR MY THIRD MANCHESTER PUNK FESTIVAL!
For more information about the festival go here: https://manchesterpunkfestival.co.uk/
This top ten was written by Colin Clark.