Citadel Festival 2019: Nine things to catch at Gunnersbury Park

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Citadel Festival is back for a welcome return in July, Getintothis’ James Baker recommends nine acts not to be missed.

Citadel is back next month for another edition of indie headliners, intriguing activities, and blazing sun (well, hopefully…).

The 2019 iteration sees Catfish and The Bottlemen take headline slot, well into the support of their third album, The Balance.

With the likes of Bastille, Friendly Fires, and Bear’s Den supporting, it’s going to be one hell of a day for sure.

Over the years the festival has grown a bit of a name for itself because of the all-round positive energy seen around the place, something I saw for myself for the first time last year.

The blazing July sun on top of the host of amazing acts, with a range of activities thrown in such as giant hoola-hooping and science experiments, this Summer Sunday at Gunnersbury Park really does have something for everyone.

Having the range it has brings in a whole host of festival-goers you wouldn’t normally see together, but the general happiness all around that comes with it is something that other one-day festivals could take note of.

Something we’ll be hoping doesn’t return this year is the same journey home. Whilst Citadel 2018 closed after an amazing day full of sun, yoga, and Aussie rockers Tame Impala, it was met with quite the opposite after the nearest tube station closed, leaving many of us queuing for a train that wasn’t coming.

Festival organisers of course were quick to respond, and promised this would not happen again.

Moving an established day-festival out of central London was never going to be a walk in the park, so we can sympathise with there being a stumble along the way. We’re sure this will all be left behind us once Catfish leave the stage this year, and we all hop on a tube happy as Larry.

One thing that seems to be a staple at one-day festivals are clashes.

Some fans will stand through whatever they need to, to get that sweet spot of the main stage, whereas others will stage-hop as much as humanly possible to catch as much of the action as they can.

Regardless of which kind of festival-goer you are, as we wait for the all-important stage splits, here are nine acts/activities you’ll need to catch if you’re heading down this year.

Microdot – The 90’s Exhibition: British Music Experience, Liverpool

Friendly Fires

You’ll struggle to find a more energetic front-man than Ed Macfarlane anywhere, let alone at the festival. He along with the rest of their band have been teasing their return over the past year or so now, releasing new material for the first time in seven years, as well as a huge show at Brixton Academy.
It’s believed a new album will follow their extensive summer festival run, and if you catch them here you’ll realise why we, amongst plenty of others, are so excited for it.

Fontaines DC

This Irish punk-rock band have taken many by storm with touring as relentless as their music. Going on to support fellow punks IDLES, and the storming success of their recently released debut ‘Dogrel’, unless you’ve already got your ticket, you’ll probably not get to see them at a headline show in 2019. The rise of the band has led to venue upgrades and extra dates added to their upcoming autumn tour, which have all gone on to sell out completely. If you, like us, didn’t manage to snag one, make sure you catch them here.

Sofar Sounds

We must confess, we cannot tell you how great the acts performing here will be, but that’s the beauty of it. Sofar Sounds have created a brand for themselves in creating beautiful intimate moments with your next favourite artists, in anywhere from churches to living rooms. Their track record speaks for itself, with previous performers for Sofar London including Wolf Alice, Dermot Kennedy, and Jorja Smith. Whether it’s an unknown artist waiting for you to fall in love with them, or a returning artist performing an intimate secret set, you’ll be in for a cracker regardless.

Inhaler

Hailing from Dublin, Inhaler are very much a band on the rise. In the space of six months, they’ve gone from no released studio music, to being on the bill for Noel Gallagher at Heaton Park. Fronted by Elijah Hewson (son of Paul Hewson aka Bono), the bands latest release ‘My Honest Face’ is being likened to some of U2’s earlier material. Anyone can tell you that’s no mean feat, and judging by the growing talk of Inhaler, they’re definitely aiming for those kind of heights.

Space Yoga with the UK Space Agency

Granted this isn’t a music act, but there is more to Citadel than just great music. If you fancy some downtime, or just want your ears to recover a bit before getting back to the stages, space yoga is great for that. Hosted by both a yoga instructor and a scientist from the UK Space Agency, you will be taken through exercises that not only relax you, but also give you a sense of microgravity, sounds cool, right?

Dream Wife

Releasing their self-titled debut last year, Dream Wife are a London-based female trio whose blistering stage presence have been getting rave reviews across the board. The band started out as an art project by the then-students at Brighton University, they’ve gone from what was a bit of fun to selling out venues. Their pop-punk sound is something on the rise in the last couple of years, and something we are all for.

Hyukoh

In the midst of the ‘K-Pop takeover’, Hyukoh are here to prove there is a whole lot more to that side of the musical world. Think the way BTS are likened to The Beatles, but if they actually had a similar sound to them.
Lead singer Oh Hyuk says the indie band represents the growing problems the youth face in South Korea. With a handful of EP’s and one full-length album under their belt, we’re confident Hyukoh will be one of those hidden gems at this years festival.

DMA’s

Aussie rockers DMA’s have set the indie scene alight since their 2016 debut Hills End, so if anyone manages to get a flare or two in, chances are it’ll be for this set. Judging by how well they sell out their tours and their likening to Oasis, it could be suggested they actually have more fans here in the UK than they do back home across the pond. If you catch them here at Gunnersbury Park, you’ll see why.

Matthew and The Atlas

It may be considered the indie-folk heights of ten years ago may be far from what people want today, but this act may make you think twice about that. Gearing up for the release of his third album, Matthew Hegarty brings his latest offering of acoustics to Citadel for what will be a heart-warming set.

 

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