Fighting chance of stardom for band

AD/DC, Metallica, The Rolling Stones, Oasis, Fleetwood Mac. What do all these bands have in common?

Wednesday, 24th August 2016, 2:00 pm
Updated Thursday, 25th August 2016, 5:17 pm
Fighting Caravans
Fighting Caravans

They’ve all played Reading Festival and now a young Blackpool band are going to be added to that list of legendary musicians this weekend.

For a lot of bands, playing Reading (and now the twinned Leeds) Festival is the pinnacle of their career but for Fighting Caravans, this achievement has come in the group’s infant stages.

An alternative rock quintet, who describe their sound as “A tacky disco meets a last-mile wake”, Fighting Caravans won the annual Futuresound competition to get their slot at the festival. Josh Hogan, the band’s 21-year-old drummer, from South Shore, spoke about the band’s excitement.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Fans at the main stage at Leeds Festival

He said: “It was nuts, it took a long time to actually sink in but its a great feeling, definitely a bucket-list level achievement.

“I’ve been a few times and to now be playing on one of those stages is just amazing,

“Its come around so quickly and we are very excited, we can’t wait!”

Josh also talked about the competition and thanked everyone who voted for the band, adding: “We entered the Futuresound competition and were fortunate enough to get chosen to participate in the live heats along side 39 other bands, so to come out on top was just crazy.

Red Hot Chili Peppers

“We are extremely grateful, firstly to Futuresound for the opportunity, but mainly to everyone who bought a ticket, came down, partied and voted for us, we wouldn’t be in the position without those guys!”

Joining Josh in the band are singer Daniel Clark, 28, guitarists Ross Day and Alex Fletcher, 22 and 20, and bassist Simeon Lees, 22.

The festival appearance marks a meteoric rise for the band, who have only been touring with their current line-up since July last year.

They’re influenced mainly by American Blues but also by contemporary rock music likening their sound to Queens of the Stone Age, Nick Cave and Radiohead, with subtle country, jazz and psychedelic overtones.

Fans at the main stage at Leeds Festival

In 2015, Fighting Caravans released their debut EP, Beasts Of England and during September will be embarking on a tour of the UK and the rest of Europe with dates in The Netherlands, Germany and Czech Republic.

Speaking about the European tour, Josh said: “Having the chance to play our music in different countries is second to none.

“We went out to Ireland, Belgium and the Netherlands last October and that was amazing, everyone was so welcoming and the hospitality we were shown was ace.”

Reading Festival is the oldest music festival still in existence and it’s best known for booking rock, indie, metal and punk bands. Since 1999, it has also run parallel in Leeds.

Red Hot Chili Peppers

This year’s event will be headlined by Foals, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Biffy Clyro.