January doesn’t have to be all bleak, and the Super Friendz team is here to remind us that it can be loud, too. On the 28th of the month, Leeds’ revered Belgrave Music Hall will be the venue of choice for yet another gigantic day-long festival, Rifffest #4*, which will see seven exciting, emerging bands tear up the room.
That should entice you enough to head straight over to Dice to grab tickets for this unmissable event. But in case you needed a tad more persuasion, here’s a rundown of the line-up…
The main event, Dead Pony, hails from Glasgow and they’ve been on my must-see list for some time now. Due to illness, they were unable to assume their support slot for Himalayas as planned back in October, so this is their reprieve. And I couldn’t be giddier for it. They’re signed to Lab Records, they’ve got a Nelly Furtado cover under their belt and they were even nominated for The Sound of Young Scotland at the SAY Awards. Their antagonistic, ferocious blend of alt rock takes no prisoners. You’d better prepare your ears now.
Brooders are particularly noteworthy for two reasons; not only is their tight shredding something else, but they’re the band who’ve been curating these shows over the years now (which you’ll spy on the poster but I also discovered when I attended Rifffest #2 in 2020).
You’ve also got the blistering, ultra-feisty punk band HELLE on the bill, who are ready to raise exactly what their name suggests. You might also recognise it from the Lending Room gig snaps we posted last year.
Streams rack up into their hundred-thousands for DITZ, a dissident-style, lung-busting five-piece who don’t mess around. They’ve been gaining traction for a while, and they’ve even got Steve Lamacq’s buy-in. The latter can also be said for Mince, who are set to bring with them some serious angst on the day.
Distorted electronics are very much the plat du jour in the alt rock spheres, which is what will make Girls In Synthesis a real riot, too — especially if they play the pacy ‘Watch With Mother’. And you’d better get those hands in the air for the horror-and-sci-fi-straddling Leeds quintet, Yutaniii, who can do immersive and mellow as well as pure foot-stomping.
So, we’ll see you there then, yeah?
*With thanks to Super Friendz for the press access