So what is on at this year’s Harbour Festival? The short answer is, of course: a whole lot. But that isn’t a very helpful answer. So we thought we’d give you a few pointers of what to see this weekend.
Let’s start with the big one. The amphitheatre stage is located down by the waterfront at Lloyd’s Amphitheatre and will playing host to the biggest acts all weekend, kicking off with the Outlook Orchestra on Friday. Playing as part of Colston Hall’s 150th birthday celebrations, the 20-piece orchestra will perform a 100-minute live mix celebrating some of the biggest tracks heard across dance floors on sound systems worldwide, plus a full performance by special guest Roots Manuva. The event is one of the few that are ticketed over the weekend, but you can still purchase tickets from Colston Hall.
There are also a load of acts going on the ampitheatre stage including, Elpidio Alegria & The Dockside Latin Orchestra, The Baghdaddies, Ujima Radio Showcase, James Morton featuring Dennis Rollins & Tanya Lacey and Onallee featuring Leonie Laws & D Project.
Thekla will be kicking off their weekend in style, with a fantastic showcase from local label Chiverin, with Pelorus, Body Clocks and Tamu Massif playing in the venue’s cargo hold stage from 7:15pm tonight. On Saturday and Sunday Thekla will have an outside stage and its usual cargo hold stage, with Joe Probert (6pm), No Violet (6:30pm) Cousin Kula (7pm), Meadowlark (8pm) and Sleeptalking (9pm) all being ones to watch out for on Saturday, whilst Mark Nichols (1pm), Sam Brockington (5pm), Human Bones (5:30pm) and Sœur (6:30pm) are just a handful of the great act playing on Sunday.
The Louisiana never fail to get the best local bands down for Harbour Fest, and this year’s no differnt. Get down to see Slonk (2:30pm) Modern Rituals (3:30pm) Brockley Forest (8:00pm) Poisonous Birds (8:30pm), past Bristol Live coverstar ThisIsDa (9pm) and Yo No See (9:30pm) on the Saturday. On Sunday, make sure you see Nugget (3:30pm) Farebrother (4:30pm), Phoxjaw (8:30pm) and Paint (9:30pm) as well.
Hy Brasil Music Club
The venue that used to be the beloved Start The Bus has got three huge take-overs ready for the weekend. The first on Friday is courtesy of Factory Studios, starting with Dog In The Show at 7pm, and finishing with Tax The Heat at 10pm. Saturday will see Pirate Studios bring Harvey Causon (3pm), Kayla Painter (6pm), Rozelle (8pm), Demob Happy (10pm) and a whole host more to the venue, along with free drinks, free t-shirts and a virtual reality experience as well. If the (highly probable) rain is too much for you, don’t worry, Pirate Studios will also be streaming the whole event online through their social channels. If you can still stand after all that excitement, Sunday plays host to BIMM, who will be bringing some of the most exciting new talent currently in the city.
Situated near the fountains, the Cascade Steps is always a fantastic place to see live music. Take a seat and watch the likes of Stevie & The Masquerades, Lady Nade, Priita and the Frampton Shantymen.
The Grain Barge
Though tucked a little out the way of most the action, it is definitely worth taking a detour to the Grain Barge. The Hotwells-based bar has an outside stage, which will be playing host to Cécile (1pm), The Gin Birkins (3pm) and The Man and The Lake (5:30pm) on Saturday, and Goodrich (4pm) and B.Moody and the Sky Pilots (5.10pm) on Sunday.
This list is (very obviously) not everything going on this weekend, because there is absolutely loads. There is a ton of music, dance, food and boat stuff happening over the weekend and, lets be honest, you’re not going to be able to see everything because it would be impossible.
But yeah, basically have a great time.