We headed down to Slam Dunk Festival in Leeds last weekend, with this being our third visit to the festival in a row now. Whilst, it wasn’t quite our writer’s favourite trip there, we did have a great time, with the festival once again producing a fantastic line-up that we simply couldn’t keep ourselves away from.
Review by Jane Howkins
Photos by Chris Mackins
Before the main event, Friday night was all about Punk and Ska, a night that featured legends such as The Selector, The Beat, Stiff Little Fingers and Buzzcocks.
Stiff Little Fingers
On Saturday, the first band we decided to see were The Dangerous Summer on the main stage. While I admittedly didn’t know much of their stuff, they were fairly enjoyable – if a little generic. Still, they were perfectly adequate at what they did, and they served their audience well.
The next band we checked out were Creeper – a band that we’ve wanted to see for a while now but hadn’t previously managed to see (despite a very thorough touring schedule over the past few years!) They were generally very good, despite some issues with with the sound quality in the arena. The first couple of songs from Creeper’s set were indistinguishable from each other, although after that the sound got markedly better. Apart from that they were great, although it did put me off seeing further bands in there later on.
We decided to stay for a while at the ska stage and caught Zebrahead, who practically have a residency at the festival now. They have a great stage presence and their act involved lots of crowd surfing, free beer, and members of other bands from the stage dressing up as Prince Harry and his new wife. All in all they played a great set, although the sound quality was a little worse than it should have been.
Lower Than Atlantis were up next, and seemed to be a firm crowd favourite. Their music does stray into the generic at times but they do have some catchy tunes, and I found myself nodding along and making a mental note to check out some more of their stuff when I got home. It’s summery music to drink a cider to anyway!
Our penultimate act was ska-punk legends Goldfinger, who were fantastic as ever. John Feldmann did look a little like a faith healer on stage in his suit (he must have been boiling), and he certainly had the charisma of one! He was joined by a selection of musical legends from a slew of other bands, and they put an an extremely energetic peformance, being our favourite act of the day.
After that, it was time for one last pint and one last act, and we decided to check out rock legends Jimmy Eat World. The band tend to have a reputation for having a slightly middling live show, but at Slam Dunk it was perfect, with the set list looking and sounding incredible. They were definitely a good choice of headliner, and we can’t wait to see who Slam Dunk pull out to headline next time around!
Slam Dunk Festival 2018 took place in Leeds City Centre on Friday 25 and Saturday 26 May 2018.