Manchester Psych Fest: 2021 Preview

With Manchester Psych Fest taking place in various venues across the city this Saturday, here are some of the acts on the line-up we suggest you see...

Preview by Nadia Younes | 01 Sep 2021
  • Gwenno live at Hidden Door 2018

If you’ve spent the last few weeks sitting through the endless stream of festival content on Instagram, but felt too nervous to camp or simply didn’t think they would actually happen, why not ease your way back in with a city festival?

Manchester Psych Fest takes place across various city centre venues over one day – running from 2pm-4am on Saturday 4 September – and incorporates live music, DJ sets, art and food. If you’re planning on heading along to the festival this weekend, we’re here to help you plan out your day with a few must-see acts.

Don’t miss a second, and get stuck into the live music as soon as proceedings kick off with London-based eight-piece Kokoroko (O2 Ritz, 2pm), whose jazz and Afrobeat-infused tracks and incredible live chemistry will certainly get your day off to an energetic start. A music and film crossover is next on the agenda, as Welsh musician Gwenno will be performing the live score she wrote for Mark Jenkin’s 2019 BAFTA-winning film Bait (The Watchtower, 4.15pm).

As you head into the evening, prepare to be mesmerised by the alluring presence of Canadian singer-songwriter Dana Gavanski (Factory251, 6.45pm), whose vocal stylings are frequently compared to Nico and Aldous Harding. London-based DJ, producer, and NTS regular Nabihah Iqbal (The Watchtower, 9.45pm) will be playing a live set after the sun goes down, which is sure to be a genre-traversing affair.

If you’re sticking around into the wee hours, bring your day of festivalling (almost) to a close with psych-pop quintet Vanishing Twin (YES Basement, 12.15am). With its members all hailing from various parts of the world and working across multiple projects, the result is a sound that is all-encompassing and gloriously unique.

Manchester Psych Fest, Manchester (various venues), 4 Sep; tickets available at

Important information about Manchester Psych Fest's COVID-19 policy can be found here: