Manchester Psych Fest 2018: Preview

Ahead of 2018's Manchester Psych Fest on 1 September, we take a closer look at this year's line-up

Preview by Hannah Clark | 27 Aug 2018

The countdown is on! Saturday 1 September sees Manchester Psych Fest return for its sixth consecutive year. Hosted across three of the best venues in Manchester’s Northern Quarter: Band on the Wall, Soup Kitchen and Night & Day Café – this year’s epic psychedelic odyssey captures the inclusive and diverse spirit of the city.

Manchester Psych Fest is known as an event that brings together an exciting mix of local talent as well as musicians and artists from around the world. This year’s line-up is no different. Here are some of the bands we are most excited for.

Psych Fest headliners Honeyblood are Scottish duo Stina Tweeddale and Cat Myers who bring with them an effusive blend of shoegaze and true indie grit coupled with beautifully poignant vocals that has taken them from strength to strength since they started out in 2012. Their second LP, 2016's Babes Never Die crackles with vibrant personality and propelled them into the very well deserved spotlight.

The Wytches
Whether blasting their stage with uncontained energy or paring things back to deliver one of their quieter, more introspective tracks, The Wytches roots lie in grungy psychedelia. The noise and mayhem at the core of each strikingly creative set they play makes them a captivating live act.

Krautrock, psychedelia, 1960s pop passion, post-punk. Can you get all of these styles into one quartet? With Brighton based TOY, you most certainly can. Their music is laced with a darkly beguiling melodic quality that suits small and large venues alike and their lyrics, particularly those found on 2016's Clear Shot will leave you with as many questions as answers and you will be fine with it.

Josefin Öhrn
Josefin Öhrn is capable of mesmerising much larger venues but the intimacy of a small space at Manchester Psych Fest will no doubt make her performance all the more memorable. With a haunting, trippy vibe radiating from her stage, Öhrn will captivate with her ethereal lyrics and rich vocal range.

The Asteroid #4
With two decades of wonder under their belts, The Asteroid #4 are seasoned veterans of the psychedelic scene. Their blend of epic melody and delicately shimmering imagery is layered in laid-back guitar riffs and gentle reverb lending their sound a mellow vibrancy that is not to be missed.

For local talent this year, Psych Fest will host some of the most amazing genre-spanning bands that Manchester has to offer. Grimm Twins, Mold, ILL and Slow Knife each bring with them a different and exciting edge to the psychedelic spectrum of sound. Whether it's the growling, challenge of Grimm Twins' synth-heavy noise-fest, or the anarchistic sound of ILL, a band who defy convention and genre alike, Manchester’s bands represent strongly in this year’s festival. Mold are a relatively new act but they aren't shy; their rage and determination is evident across their music and their brutal pacing and bruising melodies are a spectacle to behold, while Slow Knife deliver an unusual mix of spoken word lyricism and avant-garde instrumentals to test the mind and bend the soul.

It's safe to say that this year the only difficulty for festivalgoers will be deciding which of the three venues to visit next but rest assured, there's little capacity to go wrong across the day.

Manchester Psych Fest takes place on 1 Sep; Tickets are available here