The May Day Bank Holiday is approaching this weekend and that can only mean one thing. Well, depending which century your traditions are originate, it might mean a few other things, from pagan dancing to International Workers’ Day, but for Chapel Street in Salford it can only mean one thing, and that’s Sounds From The Other City festival.
The annual new bands knees up is once again the highlight of the long weekend, commandeering the Sunday by booking in some of Greater Manchester's finest pop pickers. This year, those directing proceedings hop from the buzz band heavyweights at Now Wave to seasoned niche indie selectors at Bad Uncle and Comfortable on a Tightrope, via the pathway of dependable promoters at Hey! Manchester, Grey Lantern and Fat Out, round the record label corner to Gizeh/Little Red Rabbit, Red Deer, Sways, Samarbeta and Tru Luv, and back onto the main road blockaded by visual delights at Video Jam and the comic timing of Sham Bodie. And breathe.
Under those umbrellas, or rather in those venues, you’ll find many of those currently orbiting at the centre of Manchester’s creative universe rubbing shoulders with handpicked touring acts to set your ears ablaze. Ex Easter Island Head’s collab with the BBC Philharmonic Ensemble is sure to be a standout, and you won’t go far wrong with Naked (On Drugs), Paddy Steer, Liz Green, Jane Weaver, Black Josh, Acre Tarn or many more, but roaming around is always a sure fire way to see something unexpectedly great.
Venues-wise, meet at the Islington Mill wristband exchange from 3pm and float whichever way the musical breeze blows you.
Words: Ian Pennington
For tickets and more info: soundsfromtheothercity.com