Field Day 2014: Who are the hip new kids on the block?

New bands often emerge at the hip festival and this year is no exception

You can always count on Field Day, which takes place in east London’s Victoria Park next weekend, to come up with an eclectic line-up. In fact the schedule is so cutting-edge, it can leave even the most discerning music fan scratching their head. And the former one-dayer is now spread over the whole weekend, meaning there are even more alternative artists to pick from. Alongside headliners Pixies and Metronomy, there are firmly established bands such as The Horrors, Blood Orange, and Warpaint. But you’ll also find some top up-and-coming artists. To help you navigate your weekend, here is a guide to the freshest acts making an appearance.

Arthur Beatrice

This moody London-based four-piece released their debut album, Working Out, in February. Having first come to attention back in 2011, the Stowe-educated friends then disappeared from public view to hone their craft. Now their mysterious, minimalist sound and boy-girl vocals of Orlando Leopard and Ella Girardot are drawing favourable comparisons to the xx.


This London psych band has already supported the likes of Temples and Charlie Boyer and the Voyeurs, while tracks such as “Follow” impressed Marc Riley enough for him to get them down to BBC 6 Music to play a session. Only formed last year, the Anglo-Welsh band is due to release their debut album later this year.

Fat White Family

You can rely on Fat White Family to draw a huge crowd after their recent spate of unpredictable and raucous live shows. To give you an idea of just how much mischief this south London six-piece gets up to on stage, organisers of the summer series at Somerset House intervened and banned them from playing after Franz Ferdinand invited the band to support them there next month. Expect clothes to be shed, and profanities aplenty from this dysfunctional rock’n’roll band that won the Philip Hall Radar award at this year’s NME awards.

Courtney Barnett

Until last year this 26-year-old from Melbourne hadn’t even left her native Australia. Now Barnett finds her slacker rock in demand across the globe and she is appearing at pretty much every festival going this summer. Her first full-length record will be out later this year, filled with lo-fi tales of booze ups, panic attacks, and, er, masturbation.


Formed over a love of Deerhunter, Childhood frontman Ben Romans-Hopcraft and guitarist Leo Dobson left university and went straight out on tour with Palma Violets. The indie pop band recorded their debut album with producer Dan Carey (Bat for Lashes, Lianne La Havas); it will be released later this summer. Expect a fun-filled show from the up-and-coming Londoners.


Temples won some high-profile fans in Noel Gallagher and Johnny Marr when their debut album Sun Structures was released in February. The psychedelic rock band from Kettering were previously in a number of other projects until they broke through with debut single “Shelter Song”. One of the most exciting live acts around.

East India Youth

William Doyle swapped guitars for a laptop a few years ago and his Brian Eno-inspired, reverb-laden electronic project has been drawing comparisons to kings of the genre, Fuck Buttons. His debut album Total Strife Forever received cheering reviews when it was released in January. Doyle’s set will be worth popping along to for his six-minute anthem “Heaven, How Long” alone.

Shy Nature

A classic indie band that sounds as if it was formed in the mid-Noughties, Shy Nature have yet to release a record. But their jangly guitars and sweeping choruses ensure they are ready for the inevitable stadium shows. Should be a fun one; their big, bouncy tunes have inspired stage invasions at recent gigs.

Charlotte OC

Blackburn-born singer Charlotte OC was signed and dropped by Columbia records when she was a teenager. After taking some time out to work at her mother’s hairdressing salon, she signed with Stranger Records, home of Lana del Rey, and released her first EP Colour My Heart last year. The soulful singer-songwriter has been recording her bewitching tunes in Los Angeles and plans to put out a full album later this year.

The Wytches

The Brighton band has been drawing comparisons to the alt-rock giants Pixies since they emerged on the scene last year with “Beehive Queen”. They have been vocal about disagreeing with write-ups that claim they’re a psych band, instead preferring the term “surf doom” to describe their dark sound. They will release their debut album, Annabel Dream Reader, in August, which was co-produced by Bill Ryder-Jones and apparently recorded in just two days.

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