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Pete’s Shit Opinions #1 Reading & Leeds (3 min reading time)

You’re 18 years old and you have finished sixth form. No more pretending to revise to keep your parents off your back, you can truly do fuck all until you go Uni or College. Some of you might even go straight out there and get a job. It’s real world time, those lazy students could learn a thing or two from you. Before all that though, it’s time for those summer plans. This is the big one. The final one before adulthood hits (Or you go Uni and postpone it for at least three more years).

So what do you do?

I guess you could fly out to Southeast Asia… beach parties in Thailand, drinking out of buckets in Vietnam. It will be the spiritual awakening you need to be the centred, transcendent person you know you really are inside. Or How about Ibiza? Pop some pills and really get into deep house. Maybe you can buy a mixing deck, you can set up at every house party that you go to and can tell everyone about how ‘The Island’ is the only place in the world worth going.

Those cost money though, so there is one final option. A festival. Not just any festival. Split across two of the most famous (a stretch) and beautiful (not even close) locations in the Country

Reading and Leeds.

Let’s talk about Reading & Leeds. The festival mind you, not the town and city that host it. 2018 has been called the worst line-up of all time, and personally I reckon it’s pretty shite as well. There are a few highlights thrown in don’t get me wrong; Kendrick is possibly the biggest name in music right now and AJ Tracey will put on a show. Whilst at the other end of the spectrum Pale Waves and Shame are must-see’s before they hit the big stages over the next couple of years.

But.

The rest of the line-up just lacks something… Excitement? Imagination? Maybe both, maybe neither. For years Reading & Leeds has churned out the same line-up dressed up slightly differently. It served its purpose; tickets were sold, money was made and it was the go-to festival if you wanted to see some guitar bands and get fucked… No problem there. You didn’t even have to check the line-up each year. You could put good money on Foo Fighters being there somewhere, Kings of Leon would be on that poster and for unfathomable reasons Fall Out Boy too. If you looked a little deeper though, R&L had a good knack for putting together a great mix of lesser known bands and it was these bands that really made the festival worthwhile.

The famous Arctic Monkeys show just before they hit the big time comes to mind. Even the infamous 2013 line-up (Green Day, Eminem and Biffy Clyro headliners… What a load of trash) had Swim Deep, Drenge, Peace and P Money further down the list to help save it.

This year they have torn the formula up. Indie/Alternative is out, Hip-Hop/Grime is in (There is still quite a lot of Indie/Alternative if you actually check the line up released so far).

What a ruckus this has caused.

Chances are if you on Freshborngold, this mix will not be a problem. We love a whole spectrum of music here across any kind of genre. If it’s under the radar but damn good, that’s Freshborngold material.

My problem with R&L 2018 isn’t the change of genre (R&L has gone through various iterations throughout its life), my problem is that they have done it so poorly.

So well done R&L for having the balls to finally mix the formula up from the same stale line-up of the last decade (We almost finally got rid of Fall Out Boy).

I just wish you had done it better.

Peter x

freshborngold