Last year on a sunny day in June, the normally drab streets of Wakefield were surged upon by indie music lovers from near and afar for the inaugural Long Division festival. Highlights ranged between 8-piece Los Campesinos! getting intense and sweaty on a tiny stage in The Hop all the way to Emmy The Great soothing the souls of hundreds of folk sat in the pews of the historic Wakefield Cathedral. One-day city festivals are all the rage at the moment: cheap, lots of music and none of the hassles of camping, but few have got it as right as Long Division.
The festival was lovingly created by local fanzine Rhubarb Bomb and is heading into it's second year following a sellout 2011. The festival uses the thriving local music scene as a base and brings in artists from far and wide to make up the full complement. Long Division prides itself on the DIY ideals which backs a large part of a truly independent music scene.
The main event takes place on Saturday the 2nd of June featuring 75 bands across nine different venues at a cost lower than a lot of standard gigs, a modest £15adv. From 12pm through till midnight you'll never be more than 5 minutes walk from some music, in some pretty unusual places. Out go the bland suits of the Town Hall to be replaced with some colourful pop whilst Westgate Chapel will host some chill singer-songwriters. Headliners making the trip to the small but charming city include The Vaselines, Art Brut, Herman Dune and Frànçois & The Atlas Mountains. Be sure to check out the full lineup and get planning who to see.
But Saturday's event isn't the only thing happening this double-bank holiday weekend. If you're keen for a bit more music then you can head to The Hop on Friday the 1st of June for a free gig/opening party featuring a pretty legendary indie-pop headliner by the name of Johnny Foreigner. And if you want to go all-in then you should also be sure to check out the free Fringe festival occurring on Sunday the 3rd, a platform for local acts and performers to promote themselves.
Wakefield is the only city in the UK to not have a football team. It is situated just south of Leeds and is a measly 1hr40minute cheap train ride from Nottingham. It has three things in abundance: good pints, good music and pies.
If you're out late you definitely want a pie.
Get more information at http://www.longdivisionfestival.co.uk/
On Sunday the 20th I presented a Long Division preview show, tracklisting available here.