Neighbourhood Weekender returned to Warrington for another year with a weekend packed full of indie talent.
The festival had minimal clashes and was the perfect size to run between stages. Catching smaller acts on the beautiful Viola Beach stage – surrounded by colourful umbrellas in memory of Swings and Waterslides – to main headliners on the Main Stage, all within a five-minute walk.
Food options were varied from stone-baked pizza to Thai noodle boxes and queues for the bars were reasonably good. The Neighbourhood Inn was also packed with crowds playing pub quiz, singalong bingo and rockaoeke; the festival took into consideration those extra details to ensure fans enjoyed the perfect festival experience.
Kicking off 2019 with a BBC Sound of nomination, British four piece Sea Girls opened up the Main Stage on the Saturday, exciting fans with their upbeat half an hour slot packed full of their most popular tracks which included debut single Call Me Out and their new release, Damage Done.
Leeds lads Marsicans kicked off Stage 2 with their upbeat indie vibes followed by Distiller’s Anteros, who played the festival following the release of their incredible indie-pop debut album, When We Land. Throughout the rest of the Saturday, we saw alternative rock band Maximo Park play a range of tracks taken from their six studio albums including Apply Some Pressure, Books From Boxes, Hips and Lips and What Equals Love?
English indie rock legends The Twang followed Gaz Coombes by opening their set with the popular Barney Rubble and The Hunna, named one of the UK’s most in-demand bands, had fans jumping up and down to the their guitar heavy anthems. Kawala closed the Viola Beach stage nicely with their light-hearted, easy-going acoustics before singer-songwriter George Ezra, well loved for his debut track Budapest (2013), took to the Main Stage to finish off the first day of the festival.
Day two’s line-up was jam-packed full of incredibly talented acts, ranging from emerging local bands such as The Snuts to internationally renown artists such as The Vaccines.
Fiction Records’ The Amazons played Stage 2 mid afternoon following the release of their amazing second studio album, Future Dust. Fans moshed out to brand new tracks Mother and Doubt It, as well as popular tracks like Black Magic, Stay With Me and Junk Food Forever taken from their self-titled debut album which hit #8 in the UK chart in 2017.
Throughout the Sunday, we also heard fans belting out a number of Gerry Cinnamon’s acclaimed tracks (such as Sometimes and Belter) who played Neighbourhood following his sold out UK tour and continues to build his huge fan base with his sing-along, likeable releases and brutally honest lyrics.
The remainder of the day included sets from Brit Awards winner Kate Nash with her famous track Foundations and Liverpool boys Circa Waves with their guitar-heavy What’s It Like Over There?
Skinny Living, known for track ‘Let Me In’ rounded off the day nicely with their chilled acoustic set before Richard Ashcroft took over the main stage with tracks from his solo album Natural Rebel, before thrilling crowds with the glorious sound of some of The Verve’s best tracks such as Bittersweet Symphony, Sonnet and Lucky Man.
Words by Sophie Eastham // @sophyvictoriae