Aug 4-7

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TV Priest

Without a brutal evaluation of their own becoming, TV Priest might have never made their second album. Heralded as the next big thing in post-punk, they were established as a bolshy, sharp-witted outfit, the kind that starts movements with their political ire. There was of course truth in that, but it was a suit that quickly felt heavy on its wearer’s shoulders, leaving little room for true vulnerability. Having made music together since their teenage years, the London four-piece piqued press attention in late 2019 with their first gig as a newly solidified group, a raucous outing in the warehouse district of Hackney Wick. When ‘Uppers’ arrived in the height of a global pandemic, it reaped praise from critics and fans alike for its ‘dystopian doublespeak’, but the band — Drinkwater, guitarist Alex Sprogis, producer, bass and keys player Nic Bueth and drummer Ed Kelland – were sat at home like the rest of us, drinking cups of tea and marking time via government-sanctioned daily exercise. As such, the personal and professional landmark of its release felt “both colossal and minuscule” dampened by the inability to share it live. “When we finally got to tour, it was so enjoyable; it was punk and it was intense and it was sweaty rooms. It was – and it is – very cathartic to do that,” says Drinkwater. “But when we go back on the road, we’re interested in being a band that feels like we’ve progressed. Sometimes it can be scary to be quiet, you know? But by leaning into that, you realise that actually, maybe, that’s exactly the thing that makes it so affecting.”

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