Preview: The Great Escape 2024

The weather is just about on our side just yet, and that’s fuelling our excitement to return to the seaside for The Great Escape 2024.

There’s no time for skimming stones as across 30+ walkable venues, between 15th – 18th May, Brighton opens its arms to welcome some of the world’s most exciting upcoming artists, alongside some local talent. With over 450 budding musicians set to play, The Great Escape reminds us why they’re the festival for new music and the first place to discover your new favourite within any genre.

Hopping on the main stage at the Brighton Dome Music Hall, for one of this year’s Spotlight Shows, is American singer-songwriter Faye Webster, joined by Sid Sriram. Webster, 26, invites a unique sound to the shore as she styles out stoner-folk, carefree indie pop, and R&B influence within her music. After a surge in TikTok popularity, her tough-to-pin soul and heartfelt lyrics have struck a chord with many coming-of-age wannabes, making her the perfect 21st-century navigator.

Sriram, 33, is ready to open the stage for this big Friday night with his Carnatic twist on R&B. Carnatic is a subgenre of classical Indian music that evolved from Hindu text and tradition, which his music teacher mother raised him on after moving to California. This is a new one for me so I’m excited to take a trip down to catch him in action, making this performance one not to miss across the weekend.

Other notable mentions that have already snagged our attention include a regular So Young favourite, Wunderhorse, who you can catch on Thursday evening. NYC’s Been Stellar never stick around for too long so make sure that you free up space to catch these lot before they head back to the States. Cork’s Cardinals are set up to serenade you with accordion laced indie rock. And finally, the Scouse meets Mancunian mega mix that is Picture Parlour return to the pebbles with snarling vocals to sing along to. 

First picks for Friday include Ugly, a rallied-up six-piece from Cambridge who now reside in London, and one I’m 100% not missing that day will be the Irish trio Kneecap, as the minute I hear ‘Get Your Brits Out’ live, the memories of driving around my hometown as an eager 18-year-old with all the windows down, frightening the public and blasting that tune, will resurface in all their glory.

Rounding up our trip to the beach on Saturday’s closing parade will be the newly labelled Soft Play, but not to fret, from recent show experiences, ‘The Hunter’ and ‘Cheer Up London’ will be smashed through a speaker near you at full volume. The duo remains in their true form for sure. 

Dropping in and about over the weekend for a TGE debut are Manchester three-piece Nightbus and the shoegaze washed, indie rock of Slow Fiction. Following their London debut (a show with us at So Young at the Blue Basement), NYC trio,  Fcukers, bring back 90s dance tracks packed to the brim with head bops. 

All in all, if it’s a fresh range of new artists to fill up your summer playlists, the opportunity to see one of your current favourites in the flesh, or even to just sit and sink pints amongst the waves with all your pals, then a trip to The Great Escape 2024 is what you’re after.

So Young will take over Charles Street Tap on Thursday 16th May with a lineup that includes, mary in the junkyard, Been Stellar, Slow Fiction, Radio Free Alice and Nightbus. See you there.

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