I was running late due to heavy traffic on the horrible M5, but had to rush to get to The Lanes venue to grab my credentials – luckily with no drama – and catch the end of True Heights‘ set who are blowing up in the UK right now. The festival is in its second year, and with a turn out that I witnessed, you would have thought it had been going longer than that. Fat Lip Fest is set in three different venues along one street in the city of Bristol, and all within a stone’s throw of each other. The Lanes had an inside stage and also an outdoor courtyard acoustic stage. Karl Ficarotta kicked off to a decent sized crowd in the courtyard, and rightfully so, with the release of his new video.
I thought a festival set in three venues would be a nightmare due to the amount of people walking around, but the organizers I dealt with and the whole staff ran a well-oiled machine throughout the whole day – Well done guys; give yourselves a pat on the back. As a spectator, the whole day seemed to run smooth. There was a great, friendly vibe everywhere with absolutely no trouble whatsoever. Festival toilets are not a problem like outdoor festivals, as I never queued, and they were always clean.
So onto the bands – I’m not gonna review each band, as there was so many, but I’m going to highlight a few gems. I have shot and witnessed a lot of these bands live before (though not all) and ask Metal Nexus readers to just take a few minutes and go and search these acts on Spotify and YouTube. One band I had never witnessed live before was Astroid Boys. Damn! Get that one on the list for sure! With a mix of grime and heavy guitars, it’s a perfect match.
Also with Black Peaks playing, it just proves the caliber of this festival. The lads always put on a great performance. With Radio One playing their new tune “Electric Fires” and their new album ‘All That Divides’ up for pre-order means these boys are gonna be something else in 2019. The following acts are worth seeking out: Hacktivist, Tigress, KidBrother, Press to Meco, Silent Screams, Carcer City, Napolean, and especially Lotus Eater – a band not to be missed. These guys have so much energy. What you see in their video for “Break It” is what you get live for sure.
The biggest venue out of the three is the SWX which opened later in the afternoon. It holds 1050 people. I thought there was going to be too many people as everyone would be wanting to get in here. It was three-quarters full all day long, and when I was switching between The Lanes, Rough Trade and SWX, all three venues were bursting with people. A true mix of fans showed up. The lineup for the whole festival was perfect in my eyes due to rushing from venue to venue to catch the next big up-and-coming band, or to watch the more established acts.
Mallory Knox headlined the festival, and rightfully so. I’m not going into who, but a few media outlets have not been in favour of them as of late. All I have to say to them is are you deaf? and have you seen them live? This band is well-established and don’t need gimmicks. They just get out there and deliver performances flawlessly. This was the third time I have seen them and I look forward to the next time.
Again, this isn’t a full review on bands. It’s basically to let people know about festivals like this and to ask for you to get out there and check out new music. You will be blown away with the talent out there – and they need our support.
If you are in the UK, I would truly recommend getting tickets for Fat Lip Fest 2019 as soon as they go on sale, so as not to be disappointed and miss out. I can just tell that next year is going to be a belter!