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Reading and Leeds 2017: the top five

The August bank holiday mash up has once again delivered a stellar bill - but who are our favourites?

Skiddle Staff

Date published: 26th Jul 2017

 Image: Leeds Festival (credit)

For many, the August bank holiday represents the opportunity to for many to head over to Leeds or Reading for a weekend of youthful abandon, soundtracked by some of the biggest live acts in the world. Despite fairly obvious rock music roots, the duo of festivals have become increasingly diverse with regular main stage slots from big name rappers and dance acts, which in recent years have included Disclosure, Kendrick Lamar and Eminem.

Marshall Mathers returns in 2017, along with fellow headliners Kasabian and Muse, helping to form one of the most mouthwatering headline trios festival season has to offer. Add this to a Reading Festival line up and Leeds festival line up that also includes Liam Gallagher, Giggs, Blossoms, Haim and tonnes more, and what you have is a truly unmissable end of summer blowout.

With plenty to choose from, we picked our way through Reading and Leeds' delights to highlight the five must see acts of the weekend.

Liam Gallagher

Another twist in the career of the youngest Gallagher sees Liam take on the world this time as a solo star. Early signs of debut release As You Were are more than positive, with both 'Chinatown' and 'Wall Of Glass' exhibiting the singer's iconic vocals in glorious fashion.

With an increasingly tight band that includes Babyshambles bassist Drew McConnell, Gallagher delivers numbers both new and old in typically snarling fashion, and those eager to catch and early listen of Liam's forthcoming record, slated for an October release, will be in luck. 


Arguably the biggest rock and roll band the UK has to offer at the moment, Kasabian delivered once again with 2017 release For Crying Out Loud, arguably their most compete record since West Ryder Papuer Lunatic asylum.

The big riffs, even bigger choruses and lyrical wit ,"now go get me a milkshake/don't forget the straw" a personal favourite, amounts to yet more anthems to bolster an already massive setlist at the expense of the Leicester outfit. Those fortunate to witness the band headline Benicassim reported only good things, and their shows at Reading and Leeds look to set to be nothign short of gargantuan.


2016 Best Newcomer nominee at the MOBOs and winner of the BBC Music Sound of 2017, RAY BLK is a straight talking London singer with the world at her feet. So far she has recorded with the likes of Stormzy and Wretch 32 as her profile contunes to grow, and via her releases has shown off a cool, sassy style of delivery both lyrically and vocally. 

Latest track Doing Me is a prime example of that, with bouncing pianos, a trembling bassline and the inescapable hook of "Some days I roll up in the hood and a trackie, turning up your nose cause you think I look tacky" - adding to the ever increasing Lauryn Hill comparisons. Her slot on the NME/Radio 1 Stage on Friday at Leeds and Sunday at Reading is a perfect opportunity to see one of the UK's brightest stars shining bright.

Katherine Ryan

Leeds isn't just bands and booze, there's also plenty available for those who want a lol. The alternative stage boasts two music friendly comedians in the shape of Simon Amstell and Bill Bailey on the Sunday, but for us it's acerbic Queen Katherine Ryan who wins out.

She's reached a wider audience via her own show How'd You Get So Rich? alongside appearances on Mock the Week, Never Mind the Buzzcocks and Have I got News for You, but it's the acid-tongued stand up where she's been at her best, lassoing everything from the pitfalls of being a single mum to politics, sexism and more.

High Contrast

An artist who has been on the drum and bass scene since the early 00s, High Contrast, aka Lincoln Barrett, is one of the genre's best-known names. Bursting on to the scene with his debut album, True Colours in 2002, the Welsh DJ set himself aside from more traditional DnB with his penchant for disco beats and melodic, eclectic style.

Still going strong, High Contrast is known for being a prolific remixer having reworked music from the likes of Adele, White Stripes and Kanye West, his most recent single 'The Beat Don't Feel The Same (feat. Boy Matthews)' was released last week.

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