• Charlotte Hardman

Ones to Watch: Teddy Rocks Festival 2019

For those of us not privileged enough or inclined enough to attend Coachella, summer festival season begins in earnest this weekend and beyond. There are a plethora of festivals of all shapes and sizes, this year boasting a stacked range of line ups from some of the biggest artists and best hidden gems music has to offer. Yet one festival with more substance behind it than most is Teddy Rocks Festival, which is set to take place for the eighth year in Dorset this weekend. Teddy Rocks began as a small fundraiser to raise money for Teddy20, the charity that festival organiser Tom Newton established after his younger brother lost his battle with cancer, aged just ten. The festival has grown and grown each year since its inception, with volunteers and sponsors donating their time and money to put on a stellar spread of bands and activities, with all the proceeds going to Teddy20, and to fighting children’s cancer. This year, the Teddy Rocks line up is bigger and better than ever before, with headline performances from The Darkness and The Zutons, as well as appearances from big names such as Phil Campbell and the Bastard Sons and Toploader. Yet many of the bands on the bill may have flown under many people’s radars, so here are just some of those acts that have us the most excited for this year’s event:

Parting Gift:

British post-hardcore has exploded over the past few years, and one of the bands flying the flag for the scene have been Manchester-based quartet Parting Gift. Their blend of haunting, ethereal distortion and scything, white-hot guitars, this band’s sound is as intriguingly mysterious as it is powerfully evocative. With their newly released EP ‘Ensom’ garnering praise from across the music scene, and fresh notches in their belts in the form of recent tours with Blood Youth and Dream State, Parting Gift are sure to be a gift indeed when they grace the Vocalzone stage on the Friday afternoon. What a way to kick off a festival!

Check out: ‘Pale’, the first single from the band’s latest EP ‘Ensom’ on Spotify

Dream State:

Former touring buddies with the aforementioned Parting Gift, adding in emo quintet Dream State makes the perfect complimentary pairing. Their sound is heartfelt and affecting, but with enough fierce bite grappling around its edges to get some serious circle pits swirling! Latest single ‘Hand in Hand’ is a dramatic, punchy slice of dark rock, but it flirts with something heavier that flickers beneath the surface, delivering the best of both worlds, with uplifting choruses and threateningly wavering verses. These guys are destined for the huge stages of tomorrow, so get down to see them on the Vocalzone stage while you can!

Check out: ‘Hand in Hand’, the band’s latest single on Spotify

Press to Meco:

Effervescent and uplifting, pop rock trio Press to Meco are the perfect refreshing summer act to revitalise those long festival days. The shout-along pre-choruses on ‘Familiar Ground’ provide much opportunity for fist-waving, while fan-favourite ‘Family Ties’ boasts a lively, bassline and zesty lead guitar that is infectiously buoyant. If you’re in need of a good sing-along and an opportunity to work off those Saturday afternoon beers with some vigorous pogoing, get Press to Meco on your clash-finders ASAP!

Check out: ‘Familiar Ground’, from the band’s 2017 record ‘Here’s to the Fatigue’ on Spotify

Wolf Culture:

For those for whom no festival weekend is complete without basking in the summer rays, pop punkers Wolf Culture have the perfect soundtrack. The opening track on their latest EP ‘The Devil’s Plans for Idle Hands’, ‘Wreck’ is irresistibly vivacious, yet it hides something deeply heartfelt at its core, like a caramel centre, that makes it instantly endearing. Awash with bubbling melodies and unsullied vocal performances, Wolf Culture’s set is bound to be the best exposéthat the rapidly laterally expanding UK pop punk scene could ask for.

Check out: ‘Wreck’, from the band’s latest EP ‘The Devil’s Plan for Idle Hands’ on Spotify


For the indie stalwarts, fear not, for you have not been forgotten! Boasting buttery riffs and delectable guitar tones, indie rock outfit Bloxx are here to provide you with your fix of groove-tipped basslines and sliding synths. Having already graced the stages of Reading and Leeds festival, as well as playing to a sold-out Alexandra Palace in support of The Wombats, the band are on their way to becoming a seasoned live outfit, ready to deliver the likes of ‘Second Opinion’, with its crunching bassline, and the warm, pitching-and-falling melody of ‘Monday’ to crowds of all sizes! The indie revival is going rather well, it seems!

Check out: ‘Headspace’, the title track from the band’s latest EP on Spotify

The Foo Forgers:

As well as a plethora of brilliant bands, large and small, one of the huge draws of Teddy Rocks is their now infamous Greyhound Stage, which boasts a huge selection of acts across the weekend, in particular a collective of some of the UK’s best-loved tribute/cover bands. Ever dreamed of seeing the Foo Fighters playing a small stage to an intimate crowd? Well thanks to their doppelgängers The Foo Forgers, now you can! Be sure to get down to the Greyhound Stage after Sunday headliners The Zutons, and cap off your festival weekend by belting out some classic Foos tunes!

Check out: any of the Foos’ classics. They will all be in attendance!

This is just a selection of the many incredible bands who will be in attendance at Teddy Rocks Festival, which takes place in Blandford, Dorset from the 3rd to the 5th of May.

Tickets are available at: https://teddyrocks.co.uk/tickets

Start organising your weekend now with the official festival clash finder, available at https://teddyrocks.co.uk/lineup/clashfinder

The festival are aiming to reach a fundraising target of £100,000 to go towards fighting children’s cancer- any support you can offer would be greatly appreciated and would go towards an incredibly worthwhile cause. Keep an eye out for our coverage of the festival, which will be coming your way very shortly! And to those of you who will be attending, see you in the pit!

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