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24th August 2022

10 Must-See Acts at Reading and Leeds Festival 2022

Whether you’re a rock, hip-hop, or pop-punk fan, you’re bound to discover your new favourite artist at Leeds Festival this year – check out our picks for ones to watch.
10 Must-See Acts at Reading and Leeds Festival 2022
Photo: Leeds Festival Official Logo @ Press

With several big names pulling out of Leeds Festival with little time to go, The Mancunion have rounded up a roster of 10 must-see acts, not performing on the main stages. You may well find your new favourite act!

Beabadoobee (Festival Republic Stage – Friday)

Fresh from releasing her stellar sophomore album Beatopia, the DIY musician is on her way to becoming one of British indie’s biggest stars. Dirty Hit label mates The 1975 and Pale Waves will play on the same day albeit on different stages, so perhaps in later years we can see Beabadoobee playing to a larger audience. A self-taught guitarist, the 22-year-old’s discography ranges from softly strummed ballads to heavier tunes – make no mistake: Bea can shred!

Read our review of Beatopia here.

100 Gecs (Radio 1 Dance Stage – Friday)

With their fizzy hyperpop tunes, the genre-defying duo 100 Gecs will have you dancing in no time on Friday. Recently announced to support My Chemical Romance on their North American tour, their debut album 1000 Gecs became a viral hit almost overnight.

STONE (Festival Republic Stage – Friday)

Liverpudlian upstarts STONE first came to my attention when they were called on with only a few hours’ notice to support The Mysterines at a hometown headliner. Lead singer Finlay Power‘s stage presence is incredible – the band weave Scouse-accented sung-spoken lyrics over post-punk beats with the confidence and candour of John Cooper Clarke.

Courting (Festival Republic Stage – Friday)

Another Scouse group I couldn’t resist plugging – Courting are the next big thing. Their bombastic bops and tongue-in-cheek lyricism, sprinkled with pop-culture references recalls the Britpop of the 1990s without the leery-ness.

Brooke Combe (Festival Republic Stage – Friday)

Brooke Combe has emerged as something of a festival firework this summer. Between duetting with Miles Kane and joining Blossoms during their headline set at Y Not Festival a few weeks earlier, Brooke’s soaring vocals and soulful bops are absolutely worth seeing.

Pink Pantheress (Radio 1 Dance Stage – Saturday)

Her viral hits ‘Just for me’ and ‘Pain’ sent the starlet’s Spotify hits shooting up. BBC Sounds of 2022 winner PinkPantheress released her debut mixtape of infectious bubble-gum pop in late 2021 to critical acclaim. Her short and snappy songs are sure to be a crowd-pleaser.

Bakar (Radio 1 Dance Stage – Saturday)

Bakar’s name seems to have been floating in the ether for an eternity, but only this year did he release his first full length LP – the excellent Nobody’s Home. The multi-talented artist has something for everyone: from soothing soulful tunes to sung-spoken grooves, and even the occasional almost-shouted protest song. Bakar defies the confines of genre.

Read our review of Nobody’s Home here.

Witch Fever (Festival Republic Stage – Saturday)

The Mancunian punks will grace the Festival Republic Stage on Saturday at Leeds Festival. If you were disappointed with Rage Against the Machine pulling out of the festival, look no further as Witch Fever’s politically-charged anthems and riotous riffs may well satisfy.

Cassyette (Festival Republic Stage – Sunday)

2022 has been a whirlwind of a year for pop-punk sensation Cassyette so far and it doesn’t look to be slowing down too soon. A skilled songwriter and producer, with a striking self-made image, Cassyette will whip the Festival Republic crowd into a frenzy on Sunday.

JPEGMAFIA (Radio 1 Xtra Stage – Sunday)

The enigmatic JPEGMAFIA will bring his experimental brand of hip-hop to the Radio 1Xtra stage on the final night of Leeds Festival. Since his 2018 debut Veteran, the American rapper has maintained a steady fanbase and critical acclaim. This marks his second appearance at Leeds Festival and if his 2020 set was anything to go by, festival-goers are looking to be in for a real riot!

For information on the line-up, stage splits, travel, and volunteering, you can read The Mancunion’s Leeds Festival preview here.

For more information about Leeds Festival visit the official website here.

Sarah Taylor

Sarah Taylor

Head Music Editor @ The Mancunion. Freelance Music and Culture Writer @ DIY, The Line of Best Fit, Gigwise, etc. Avid gig-goer and alt-rock enthusiast! Twitter: @tayl0rsarah LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/sarah-taylor-48a562211/

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