For those who have been before, A Carefully Planned Festival will need no introduction. A wonderful weekend full of enthusiasm, excitement and of course excellent music. For 6 years now, A Carefully Planned Festival has brought a wide array of upcoming and established artists to Manchester’s Northern Quarter for the city’s best DIY event. Taking over nine venues – Soup Kitchen, Mint Lounge, Night & Day, Aatma, Gullivers, The Castle Hotel, The Crown & Kettle, Texture, Night & Day & 57 Thomas Street – and a line-up full of indie, math, hardcore, post-punk, folk, pop, electronic and ambient variables popping up around every corner, ACPF does more than enough to keep everyone happy. Plus with weekend tickets going for the criminally low price of £20, it would be rude not to. Buy yours here.
We’ve picked the 10 acts we’re most excited to see over the weekend below, but there’s more than just music to charge up the excitement meter. The specially brewed ‘A Carefully Planned Pale Ale’ makes it’s debut, discounts on local food and late night after-parties featuring DJ sets from Manchester indie-pop legends Underachievers Please Try Harder, local Krautrock experts Dots & Loops , and women-in-music champions Thirsty Girls Collective.
Exhilarating and contemporary math rock to make your bones shudder and turn your mind into a whirlwind of angst and content confusion? Body Hound are your guys. Experimental as heck, every change of pace an unexpected U-turn, it would just be silly to miss the live show from this Sheffield band.
The new project of niche lo-fi artist King of Cats aka Max Levy are perhaps an acquired taste, but one certainly worth acquiring. Debut album of the same name released earlier this year, Levy’s uniquely recognisable vocals perfectly complementing an array of twee lo-fi pop. It’s genuinely wonderful.
Leeds based NARCS join the ACPF line up with fellow Clue Records label mates allusondrugs. Full of political angst and ferocious melodies they are surely the ideal way to start your Saturday morning. See you there to angrily sing along with ‘Bullingdon Boys’ and shout about fracking.
Colour of Spring
It’s tough to find and explain your genre as a new band, Colour of Spring have gone with “slacker-shoegaze”. Well it’s a yes from me. New single ‘Snow’ is exactly that, gorgeous guitars soaked in reverb with hazy yet strong vocals ensuring you won’t want to miss them at this year’s festival.
This young Manchester duo might be in the early stages of life and their band, but they’ve got their sound down to a tee. Fuzzy noise pop engrossed in unforgettable melodies and slacker vocals, Strange Friends are kind of like if Alex G and Yuck had a baby – but cool and actually possible.
Underrated Southerners Fish Tank hit ACPF as part of their short UK tour promoting their new single. Sadly it’s not out for us to listen to just yet, but I’m sure they’ll play it on the day. Luckily we’ve got the energetic sounds of their previous singles in the meantime to keep us on our toes. Ferocious vocals and squealing guitars form the best kinds of pop songs.
Rice Milk are an enigma. Rice Milk make sparse, experimental pop songs. Rice Milk are brilliant. To put things on a personal level, ‘take my weight’ taken from the band’s latest EP (released June 2015) is probably in my top 50 songs. Doesn’t sound like much, but for how much music exists and I listen to, it’s a big deal. Come watch them on Sunday.
There’s more math-rock than anyone could possibly want or have the time to see at this year’s ACPF. But no fear, we’re only recommending the best. Angular riffs combined with Lucy Evers’ dazzling vocals is the best thing since sliced bread, or at least TTNG. Having met at university, Brighton-based Orchards are again giving math-rock new life, showing it’s not dead and never has been.
“Come and see them before they blow up” is an overused and often over exaggerated journalistic phrase. However, on this occasion, in reference to Trudy & the Romance this phrase is perfectly true. With upcoming dates supporting The Big Moon and Slow Club, the Liverpool band head to Manchester to play their modern-day Beach Boys-inspired sound at Soup Kitchen.
Raucous yet melodic, loud-mouth Londoners Brunch are already well-respected and known in the DIY scene for their outstanding noise-pop sounds. Not a stranger to the stage, their live set is an essential part of the weekend, if it could be part of every weekend, I would make it so.
See the full line-up below and buy tickets here!
Alasdair Roberts | Alimony Hustle | allusondrugs | Bad Vibes | Bearfoot Beware | Bearpark | Benjamin Blue | Blanket | Body Hound | Broker | Bruja | Calico | Casual Sect | Cath and Phil Tyler | Championlover | Chorusgirl | Classically Handsome Brutes | Colour Of Spring | Cowtown | Crows An Wra | Crywank | Denuo | Envoys | Falling Stacks | Former Bullies | Frauds | Garden Centre | Gareth JS Thomas | Gideon Conn | Gorgeous Bully | Grotbags | Happy Accidents | I Cried Wolf | Irk | Ithaca | Jacques Labouchere | Jesus and His Judgemental Father | Joanna Gruesome | Johnny Foreigner | Katie Malco | Kemper Norton | Kid Kin | Lake Komo | Laura J Martin | Let’s Talk Daggers | Luo | Madilan | Milk Crimes | NARCS | No Ditching | Oh Peas | Oil | Paloma Cafe | Patchwork Natives | Patty Hearst | Peaness | Perkie | Pijn | Pilosa | Pre-Birds | Proto Idiot | Real Terms | Revere | Scandinavia | Screen Wives | Shipwreckers | Shitwife | Simon Love & The Old Romantics | Strange Friends | Suggested Friends | Sunshine Frisbee Laserbeam | The Capital | The Little Unsaid | The Orielles | The Showers | The Tuts | Tom Settle | Tough Choices | Toy Mountains | Tusks | Twin Visions | Two White Cranes | USA Nails | Yards | Yr Friends
¡Ay Carmela! | Adem | Admiral Fallow | Ajimal | Alfresco Love Sounds | All The Best Tapes | Apidae | Astral Bodies | Baby in Vain | Bruce & Carl | Brunch | BYFYN | Campfires. | Cemetery Of Splendour | Charlotte Cannon | Claw The Thin Ice | Corinthians | Crashtactics | Cult Party & The Eternal Love Orchestra | Duds | Dystopian Future Movies | Easter | Esper Scout | Exploder Than You | Falls | Field Studies | Fish Tank | Foxtales | Freschard | Freakout Honey | Fruit Bomb | Future Horizons | Fvnerals | Gallops | Gdansk81 | Giorgio Tuma | Glass Ankle | Golden Fable | Hannah Nicholson | Hen Party | Her’s | Home Schooled | Hunzu Moonshine | Jo Mango | Jo Rose | John Haycock | July Skies | Katherine Priddy | Lake Michigan | Laura James | LEG. | Living Body | Lost Ground | OhBoy! | One Day, After School | Orchards | PSYBLINGS | Queen Zee and the Sasstones | Rev Rev Rev | Rice Milk | RoBoTaLiEn | Rope | Sealings | Sly & The Family Drone | Soccer96 | Tall Talker | The Blue Period | The Cool Moons | The Gildings | The Last Dinosaur | The Wicked Path | Thomas Ragsdale | Trudy And The Romance | Unwave | Vibracathedral Orchestra | Voo | Weddings | Wren