Hit The North 2019: One Man's Journey
One man. Two Hours. Seven interviews. Countless more heart palpitations…
Press Accreditation is a very exciting thing. For those unaware. It’s when you’re given free tickets to a gig / festival with the understanding that you’ll cover the event in return.
Hit the North was my first ever festival as an accredited journalist, and as such I grabbed the bull by the horns. I wanted to speak to as many artists as possible.
Unfortunately, many acts were arriving just before they played and leaving soon after, so time was not in my favour.
This culminated in a masochistic, self inflicted challenge.
Seven interviews, in two hours, across five different venues…
The day started at Think Tank Underground, where I met Swimming Tapes in the loudest green room known to man. We were surrounded by dozens of artists all preparing for their sets, including a topless Keith Flint lookalike meditating in the corner, I guess he was trying to find peace before tearing the stage apart.
It was their first gig in the North East, and they loved the crowd. They were also itching to go see Soak who hails from Northern Ireland like them.
The band has got a mad summer ahead of them with several gigs and festivals, but more importantly their debut album is being released on the 24th of May, with a single coming out a few days before.
The album was recorded in ten days behind an old pub, utilising a plethora of vintage analogue equipment, and they’re buzzing to see it drop and will definitely be celebrating with a shandy or three.
Then it was on my bike (literally) to a Mexican restaurant to meet Tamu Massif who turned out to be an absolute dreamboat. Listen to the full interview below.
Another sprint across town took me to the Bridge Hotel, where I met Walt Disco & then Far Caspian. I spoke to James from Walt Disco as the rest of the band were off getting burritos (this was beginning to become a recurring theme). He told me they also got free Doc Martens at Live at Leeds, so Hit The North might need to up their game next year.
They had a great time performing and loved the character of the venue. James said how much they love meeting new fans at festivals, and their upcoming documentary about Scottish bands will definitely showcase this.
Next it was Far Caspian. Listen to the full interview below.
Number five was at the Boilershop to chat to Roxy Girls in the incredibly snazzy press area. I went a bit mad with the free Bourbon cremes, Red Bull and Merlot. It was a strange combo but it worked wonders…
It was one of the local boys’ biggest ever gigs and they loved every second of it. They also enjoyed their earlier slot as it left them free to go and see some of their favourite acts such as Mini Mansions, No teeth and Swine Tax. The lads have got some new music coming soon, but were extremely tight lipped about the release date, merely saying it’ll be ready when it’s ready!
The penultimate interview was over at Riverside, where I met Ed the Dog. We lived, we laughed, we loved, and made plenty of phallic innuendos. Listen to the full interview below.
Lastly, I headed to the Head of Steam to meet Sweets, a new and emerging rapper.
Find out what they’re all about below.
After this it was finally time for me to see some acts. I had the joy of fawning over Another Sky in the Town Wall, followed by Blaenavon at the Boilershop, before finishing my night with a spectacular, raucous performance from Shame.
Monday was a write-off. I had an incredible day meeting some even more incredible acts.
Keep a look out for Jordan’s gig reviews from Hit the North very soon…
Cover image: Ed the Dog
Photographer: Percy Walker-Smith