Top 5 Acts at Reading Festival 2014



1) Catfish and the Bottlemen

They definitely weren’t the biggest act at the festival as they played the Festival Republic stage, however I think this festival meant the world to them, and the crowd got that. Throughout the set Van Mcann was thanking the crowd and at times looked in disbelief at entire crowd singing their songs, and that brought out some of this raw passion. Hearing the songs on the internet are great, but listening to them live are even better ‘Kathleens’ catchy chorus along with ‘Rango’s’ excellent lyrics just make the songs much more important.

Also the gig was my type of gig as it was relatively small, very intimate, and I was close to the front which makes it all the more better, Catfish and the Bottlemen have forced a place in my mind and I will forever be a fan.



2) Chvrches

This choice may be somewhat biased due to my recent obsession with them, however their set was a spectacle and also made me a fan for life. Their sound just filled the room with ease, and Lauren Mayberry’s vocals were second to none in the entire World let alone the festival.

The only doubt I had was that due to them only having one album under their belt, making me think it may have go stale but hearing it live gave it a fresh feel but simultaneously sounding exactly like it did on the record. It’s hard to pick out a favoured song as they were all performed to a tea, however If my arm was twister it would have to be ‘Under the Tide’.



3) Arctic Monkeys

These may have been higher on the list if the sound was spot on, however due to inconsistent sound they fell down the pecking order slightly. No doubt the people in the thick of it had a great time, but for the people further back a lot of the performance was lost to the poor sound.

However the Monkeys pulled it back with mouth-watering set list and have a very slick frontman. The set was like a highlight reel for the entire festival as they performed at their highest ability, but then again you would if you’d been playing the songs all year round.

Some may think that Arctic Monkey’s was a boring choice for a list, but as I was formulating list I had to put them in because they still mean a lot to that 17 year old inside me.

162944_486257361282_4948268_n4) Bombay Bicycle Club

The anticipation for this band played a big part in them making this list, because I was bursting at the seams to this band. However, regardless to how much pain I was in because of my liver the determination to stay at the front to see Bombay prevailed, and I was in a prime spot to see on of the best bands at the festival.

Playing songs from all of their albums was a smart move as it gave variety to their set list, and a chance for even the most novice of fans to learn what the band are all about.  Their high tempo and high energy set is key for them, and they didn’t disappoint in terms of that side as they had everyone jumping around and urging everyone to give all they could.





2013Peace_AW0240801135) Peace

This was the toughest decision of all because they were a few acts that could’ve have taken this place, those being Drenge, The Orwells and Royal Blood. However, Peace pipped them all. Maybe it’s because of their B-Town roots of how cool they all looked, but those don’t matter because their set list was exquisite.

From the high tempo songs like ‘Bloodshake’ and ‘Wraith’ to their slow paced ‘Float Forever’, the band were all over it, as they set out to make the crowd fall in love with them, which they did.  Peace just seem to be going from strength to strength since they released their Delicious EP, and this festival performance is another impressive stat to add to their CV.


Words by Alex Wise @al4563


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