In the second part of our preview shining a spotlight on the Greater Manchester bands playing MPF2024, Chris Adams speaks to another seven acts worthy of your attention. To quote the poet Tony Walsh: “Some are born here, some are drawn here, but we all call it home.” Check them out…

Read part 1 here.

TNSrecords favourites Incisions tore Gorilla a new one on their last official festival appearance in 2022 and returned to headline the Thursday warm-up show last year. Vocalist Jordan Lloyd is pumped for more: “It’s always exciting to be part of such a diverse and progressive line-up and even better when you come out of it with some new friends every year. You really feel at MPF that it’s the people who are attending that play a huge part in making it what it is, without getting corporate sponsors shoved in your face between every set. I mean, you can’t beat playing in a packed out room of people singing along and going crazy and MPF definitely gives a lot of bands like ours a real opportunity to have those moments. That’s what it’s all about!”

With two albums under their belt, the south Manchester quartet’s bracing, honest hardcore is sure to thrill Gorilla once again: “Honestly though,” adds Jordan, “you’re gonna get the same Incisions wherever we are and whether there’s five or 500 people in the room watching It’ll be intense, exhausting, inclusive and beautiful.”

Another band in a similar vein are Dead Retinas, who will be rewarding those with the stamina to last until the Bread Shed after-party on Friday night/Saturday morning. “We’ve never played MPF so we’re obviously super excited,” declares bassist Chris Gaduzo. “On a scale of one to excited, a solid EXCITED.” Describing themselves as “hardcore from the rainy city” Chris himself is from the rather milder climes of Gibraltar. But with two members hailing from Stockport, this is very much home turf for the quartet. “It’s always great to play in Manchester but we haven’t actually played a ‘hometown’ show in a few months so we are really looking forward to it, more so because we haven’t had the chance to play to this kind of crowd before.” adds Chris. An “outrageous/transcendental” show is promised.

The Great St Louis, drawing members from Bolton and Stockport, played their first gig in NINE years at a midweek Moving North rager last summer. “We got asked to play MPF a couple of weeks later. So yeah, we are all buzzing to play,” reveals guitarist/vocalist John Dagger, who has kept busy with his other band Stay Clean Jolene. “We know a lot of the bands playing so it will be nice to catch up and have a beer.” The band have been in the studio this year working on a new album and will open The Union main stage at 2pm on Saturday. No pressure then? “Don’t do pressure,” laughs John. “It’s not good for you. I am sure there will be a lot of old mates there.” Early birds can expect “good old honest songs played a bit too fast with a bit of banter”.

Popping across town from Levenshulme, Matt Hartless & the Maverick 7 have big things planned for their show at Yes. “There’s a little more pressure when you need to live up to an expectation rather than being a complete wildcard I suppose, but we’re always pumped to play for our fans and friends so we’ll pull out all the stops so everyone has a blast,” says Matt. The festival newbies – four members, not eight – have heard nothing but good things about MPF. “Friends of ours recommend it as a highlight of the year and have been asking if we’re going to play it for years so we’re excited to be finally able to fulfill their wish,” adds Matt. Describing themselves as folky prog-punk, they pledge to bring “a bombastic slice of fun; equal parts fury and silliness”.

As well as having one of the most memorable names on the line-up, Smoking Gives You Big Tits also boast quite possibly the only kazoo player (kazooist?) at MPF2024. “I also play slide whistle and cowbell but I don’t want to come across as being a show-off so no need to include them,” adds vocalist Helen Bradley. Too late now. Staples of the Manchester DIY scene, SGYBT are a band born out of MPF: “I went for the first time in 2019 and fell in love with the friendly, inclusive vibe and discovered so many awesome new bands. That’s what inspired me to set up SGYBT. We opened up the festival in 2022 and the room was packed, it was one in one out. We couldn’t believe it!” says Helen. “People come to MPF to discover something new and be part of something different. We were welcomed with open arms by the MPF festival goers who decided to take a chance on coming to see us and we can’t wait to be back.”

Visitors to the Bread Shed on Saturday evening can expect a heady blend of riot grrrl, metal and post-punk with a Salford accent. “Like if Pizzatramp and Paramore form a band, but you can’t afford to see them so you buy a ticket to see their tribute act, MoreTramp, off Wish,” concludes Helen.

Lynskey, from Oldham, are cousins B and Saul. Only a couple of EPs in, they’re brimming with enthusiasm. “This is our first MPF and it’s honestly like such an honour,” says singer/guitarist/synth player B. “It was something we thought we’d be playing *eventually* but when we got a message from AU Gigs asking if we’d wanna play it for 2024 it was the quickest I’ve ever replied to a message in my life. For real, I was in work and I had to stand up and walk around the office for a sec to chill out.”

The duo have played a couple of all-dayers around Manchester but MPF is their biggest show yet. B explains: “We wanna do right by folks who have supported us in the city like Riot Garden, The Battery Farm, Danny Barrett to name a few. But we know how lovely everyone in the scene is in general so we’re just happy to be a part of it.” Cram into Zombie Shack on Saturday night if a “silly emotional rollercoaster, riding feelings on gender, neurodiversity, and Keanu Reeves” sounds like your thing.

Also from Oldham are Animal Byproducts, fronted by guitarist/vocalist/team captain Joe Molloy, who also namechecks the aforementioned Danny Barrett and his Evil Music punk nights in the town as an inspiration. “We have played MPF three times! But also once. We’ve come off the subs’ bench last-minute for the last two, and our form in training has been really strong, so the gaffer’s have given us the nod to start this year. We’re excited to put on the shirt.”

The quartet have been plugging away in the Manchester DIY scene for several years and are now firmly part of the furniture. “What sets MPF apart is seeing the scene support itself,” says Joe. “There will always be power differentials within a music scene, but DIY punk works harder than most to minimise these where possible, and it makes us better people for it. MPF can be busy, but beautifully so. Normal life kind of coexists alongside the festival in a way that it wouldn’t otherwise. I forgot about a volunteer shift last year because I had got absorbed in making breakfast for a mixture of my punk and non-punk friends instead. But it makes the experience so much richer – I never feel closer to my creative self than at MPF. Bread Shed on Saturday evening is the place to be if you like the sound of “placid pals peddling patriarchy-poking parp punk”.

There are limited MPF tickets available here.

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