Strangeforms Festival 2024 : Day One Review

For the past nine years now, Stewart and Kerry at Bad Owl Presents have been running a two day alternative festival called StrangeForms, it’s always a stacked lineup featuring the best bands from the post-rock, post-metal & math-rock scene at one of our all time favourite venues, The Brudenell Social Club.

We’ve been in attendance for the majority of these festivals since their humble beginnings at Wharf Chambers and it’s always the end of the hibernation season for us at camp bUTTONpUSHER and the beginning of festival season.

This past weekend we made our way over to Leeds to see what Strangeforms had in store for us in 2024 and our arrival was instantly greeted by a plethora of friends we hadn’t seen in a while and we’d landed just in time to catch newcomers Love Rarely opening proceedings in the cosy environment of the main room at the brude. The 5 piece post hardcore band mix elements of mathrock and screamo with gusto to an already busy crowd from the get go and they didn’t disappoint after making it on to our radar recently with the release of their debut EP “Lonely People”.

Love Rarely : Photo Credit - Miley Stevens
Love Rarely : Photo Credit – Miley Stevens

Up next were post-rocks rising stars Din Of Celestial Birds who have been making big waves since the release of their debut album “The night is for dreamers”. Originally from Leeds it was clear to see the love in the room for the guys who have had quite the run over the last few years now and you love to see it for such a great bunch of lads. Another first time performance at the Brude up next from Pleiades who have been announced for pretty much every festival going this summer off the back of their debut album “Affinity With”. These guys are heavy hitting but still manage to keep things fairly accessible and having toured recently with Hidden Mothers (who are in attendance and showing their support down the front) this is a band who have found their stride live as they mix elements of metal and post-rock while frontman Andy flits between heavier and more melodic vocals for the duration of their set, it’s clear to see why people are latching on to these guys and that’s only going to continue as this year passes.

Pleiades : Photo Credit - Miley Stevens
Pleiades : Photo Credit – Miley Stevens

Drummer of the day award goes to Demcats who commanded attention with some insane Don Cab Octopus arms skills. A two piece from Sheffield who have been going for a while now but only really starting to build up a buzz. They plough their way through a set mixed with chaotic drums and some mesmerising guitar work to a very appreciative crowd. Following on from them are Other Half who we first saw at ArcTanGent last year where they actually played two sets and we instantly fell in love with their noisy punk vibes but for me personally it’s “Trance State” their Smells like teen spirit anthem that’s their real highlight of their set.

Other Half : Photo Credit - Miley Stevens
Other Half : Photo Credit – Miley Stevens

We were reunited with our French pals Fall of Messiah next who had returned to the UK for the first time in 5 years and it was a joy to see them back on stage at the Brudenell considering it was also the last place we actually saw the post-metal/screamo band who were playing mostly material from their last release Senicarne since they never had the opportunity due to Covid and Brexit bullshit and the crowd lapped it up. They might have lost a member but they still sound as ferocious as ever.

Fall of Messiah : Photo Credit - Miley Stevens
Fall of Messiah : Photo Credit – Miley Stevens

A quick break from the proceedings to catch up with some friends we hadn’t seen in forever meant we sadly missed False Advertising but that meant we were refuelled and down the front waiting in anticipation for our favourite electro punks CLT DRP, the venue is busy and people are buzzing as the Brighton based trio smashed their way through a high energy set full of bangers. It’s clear to see why CLT DRP are everyone’s favourite new darlings at the moment as they’ve been working their asses off relentless since the release of Nothing Clever, Just Feelings. At this stage the booze had clearly taken hold and memories are a little vague for the rest of the evening as Employed to Serve closed out day one with some chunky, heavy metal. The UK Scene is so strong right with bands like ETS leading the charge on this along with so many great new heavy bands.

CLT DRP : Photo Credit - Miley Stevens
CLT DRP : Photo Credit – Miley Stevens

Massive thanks to Stew, Kerry and the rest of the Bad Owl team for their tireless work in curating and organising one of the best weekends of the year, we’re already excited for the 10 year anniversary next year whatever it may have in store we have complete faith it will be another certified banger!!!!