Iconic punk festival Slam Dunk returns this year with arguably their best line-up yet and Joyzine will be there, on the ground, to bring you the round up of all the sights and sounds on what looks to be an exceptional day of music. Before we head up to Hatfield with a can of Strongbow Dark Fruits and our three-quarter length Dickies, we thought we’d give a rundown of some of the bands you should make the time to see.
Slam Dunk Festival is taking place two sites – Hatfield Park in the South and Leeds Temple Newsam in the North on the 4th of June and the 5th of June respectively. Whilst all your friends grimace through street parties with neighbours they barely know, why don’t you grab that old Green Day t-shirt from out the back of the cupboard and make your way over. Slam Dunk is family friendly, so get your little critter a pair of those oversized ear mufflers and indoctrinate the next generation of two-steppers in the (fingers-crossed) sunshine.
Tickets are available here.
Motion City Soundtrack
2005’s Commit This to Memory is an indie-rock masterpiece that deserves far more attention. Produced by blink-182’s Mark Hoppus, the record navigated depression, betrayal, enlightenment and fragility in an era where their peers were more concerned with singing about recent conquests. Arguably, there isn’t a bad album in their extensive discography and this may well be the last opportunity to see them on these shores. Justin Pierre is an infectious frontman and with drummer Tony Thaxton back in the fold, the original line-up is sure to make a big impression. It’s been a good few years since they last played in the UK. See them while you can.
Go on. Admit it. All Killer No Filler is still in your mum’s car, probably in the boot, ready to slip into the CD player. If it’s not All Killer No Filler, it’s Does This Look Infected? The iconic pop-punk band were due to play in 2021 but pulled out because there was some kind of virus floating around. They’re back this year with a back catalogue that is jammed full of hits. Even if you don’t know Sum 41, you know them and after a few jars you’ll be down there in and amongst the pit, swinging arms left and right.
Hot Water Music
Hot Water Music are bringing their 25th Anniversary tour to Slam Dunk but this is not a nostalgia tour by any stretch of the imagination. There’s a new album, Feel the Void, which dropped back in March that reminded us all of what we’d been missing. Staples of post-hardcore, Hot Water Music are set for a resounding set on the Dickies Stage, playing alongside The Vandals and The Bronx. Be sure to catch them in the festival setting before grabbing tickets for their show at The Ballroom in Camden. Be advised: there’ll be elbows.
Perhaps this is a hard sell but no MC Lars, no Lil Peep. Back in the early 2000’s, when artists grew organically through Limewire and MySpace, MC Lars was at the forefront of sampling iconic pop-punk and sticking the riffs beneath hip-hop beats. Granted, the subject matter wasn’t quite as ‘deep’ or as ‘meaningful’ as those that came later – but it certainly stuck with those of a certain age. Whether it was the Piebald sampling ‘iGeneration’ or the Brand New infused ‘Mr. Raven’, MC Lars knew how to conflate opposing sounds in an interesting and engaging way. His appearance on the Key Club stage will be one for the heads, no doubt, but if you make your way there, you may be reminded of the chaos and ingenuity of the early days of filesharing – so long as you don’t take it too seriously.
Whether you want to or not, you will find yourself half-cut, next to a stranger whose arm is round your neck, screaming loudly ‘This is a 44. caliber love letter straight through my heart.’ Don’t miss one of the all time greats headlining the festival.
If you’re a fan of twiddly guitars that glide over the mix and call-to-arm vocals front and centre, then you’re sure to enjoy Beauty School who play the Rock Scene Stage. This is a band that are surely onto bigger things so catch them before they blow up and you’re hard pressed to get a ticket.