INTERVIEW: Twisterella Festival | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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You could be forgiven for thinking that festival season is well and truly over, but they won’t hear a word of it around Teesside. Saturday 12th October will see the sixth annual Twisterella Festival taking place in Middlesbrough, and it promises to be bigger and better than ever before. The multi-venue one-dayer has proven to be a fine showcase for both local and national acts, as the festival’s co-promoter Andy Carr explains: “We are passionate about presenting Middlesbrough as a confident and forward-thinking town that is very much at the cutting edge for showcasing the best new music. We’re incredibly proud to have created a sustainable event that has become a firm fixture on the UK’s inner-city festival calendar.”

Middlesbrough will become a thriving hub of all that’s good in music today at venues including Teesside University Students’ Union, The Townhouse, Westgarth Social Club and TSOne, not to mention some bonus pop-up sessions around Baker Street and Bedford Street in some of the town’s more hip and happening bars.

The line-up is a veritable who’s who of local and national emerging talent. Headlining the Townhouse will be grunge pop band Bloxx, who played an exhilarating set at Radio 1’s Big Weekend back in May. Needless to say, Andy is a big fan. “We love bringing back a few familiar faces and Bloxx won a lot of new fans with their fantastic set at the Westy earlier this year.”

Another headliner will be Redcar’s own alternative hip-hop star Dylan Cartlidge, who returns to the region to perform at Westgarth Social Club following a year on the road. Andy’s Twisterella co-promoter Henry Carden sees Dylan’s performance as a big coup. “It’s an absolute privilege for us to have Dylan as one of our headliners at Twisterella. We’ve worked closely with him for the past few years and we couldn’t be prouder of how he’s progressed – he’s genuinely one of the nicest people you could ever meet and he deserves all of the success that comes his way.”

Twisterella has developed its own niche as a go-to event for the discerning music fan who is keen to keep ahead of the game as far as new acts are concerned

Further sets will come from Edinburgh’s indie rock darlings Vistas, London’s glam-goth rockers Saint Agnes and The Pearl Harts, two girls who make loud blues rock the old-fashioned way. More treats abound within the rest of the line-up, with highlights including the excellently named punk pop band Peaness, Newcastle’s alt. pop songstress Martha Hill, young rapper Kay Greyson, synth pop sisters Talk Like Tigers, raucous punx GGAllan Partridge, popsters Dancing On Tables, jangly pop from Amsterdam’s EUT, indie rockers Baby Teeth, gothic indie band Ghost//Signals, the glorious ‘melanjolly’ sound of Far Caspian and many more, plus plenty of surprises on those pop-up stages. “Since day one, we have been determined to bring the finest emerging talent to Middlesbrough and this year’s festival is no exception.” Says Andy. “Twisterella has developed its own niche as a go-to event for the discerning music fan who is keen to keep ahead of the game as far as new acts are concerned.”

As always, the (un)Conference takes place early on at Middlesbrough Town Hall, where musicians are invited to get advice and support from industry professionals. Here at NARC., we’re pleased to be partnering with Twisterella and Middlesbrough Town Hall to present a series of round-table conversations and an A&R listening panel, hosted by our very own David Saunders. Guests include BBC Scotland’s Vic Galloway and BBC Introducing’s Emily Pilbeam, Sentric‘s Simon Pursehouse, Cattle & Cane songwriter Joe Hammill, NARC. and Tees Music Alliance’s David Saunders and emerging artist Eve Conway, plus SoFar Sounds’ Hannah Clark, Clare Hargan and Elizabeth Evans. With the aim to offer great advice in a relaxed and informal setting, it’s perfect for musicians looking to expand on their exposure.

Twisterella Festival takes place on Saturday 12th October at various venues in Middlesbrough

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