Fair Play Festival 2024

Johnny James, Managing Editor
Band on the Wall

Fair Play Festival at Band on the Wall, Manchester Soup, Manchester 6 April 2024 Tickets from £15 — Book now

Following two sold out festivals in 2022 and 2023, Fair Play is back to take over the Northern Quarter with a day of live music in all its alternative forms.

Championing community, collaboration and equal opportunities, Fair Play is a relative newcomer to the Manchester festival scene, but it’s already made a big impression. It hosts a broad range of talent from across the globe, all acts leaning towards the experimental side of whatever genre(s) they operate within.

This year’s festival, presented in partnership with Albert Hall, Interior and Do You Best, is set to be Fair Play’s biggest iteration yet. A new host venue has been added in the form of Band of the Wall, which joins SOUP, Gullivers, The Castle Hotel, and The Peer Hat in hosting dozens of exciting live acts.

The third and final artist announcement dropped recently, adding rapper jawnino, local punk band Loose Articles, post punks Adwaith and ethereal folk artist KITTY to the line-up, along with a DJ set by the fast-rising Mandy, Indiana. These join second wavers including London-based Babymorocco, who recently took his melange of “filthy house beats + pure, unadulterated donk” on tour with Jockstrap and Dorian Electra, and Group Listening, whose wistful music draws on ambient and new age.

These impressive additions join a bill topped by Canadian electronic music performer, DJ, singer and songwriter Marie Davidson, one half of the excellent Essaie Pas but a great solo artist in her own right. Before her, you can catch gothic-meets-hardcore-meets-hip-hop interdisciplinary artist Denzel Himself, and captivating oddities Buzzard Buzzard Buzzard, who reinvent ’70s rock for a ’20s audience.

A little deeper into the line-up, we can’t wait for the atmospheric, jazz-inflected folk of Australia-born MF Tomlinson, a kind of straight-faced Adam Green. We’ll also be catching Ugly, whose infectious melodies, explosive dynamic changes and rich harmonies will be lapped up by fans of Black Country, New Road. We’re also glad to see Finnish-British artist otta (think lo-fi electronic pop in the vein of Sorry) back on the bill after having to cancel due to illness last year.

Another must-watch – the freewheeling, delightfully batshit Cowboyy, who were one of our highlights at Y Not last year. And we’ve been waiting for a while to catch Manchester’s own Crimewave, whose music absorbs vintage 90s sounds bridging hip hop, industrial and dance. Two more highlights, both brother-sister duos: Slap Rash, who’ll be bringing a minimal but pummelling take on post punk, and Comfort, legends on Glasgow’s queer/punk scene.

Each year the festival hosts an independent record label from elsewhere in the country to curate part of the line-up. This year it’s London-based, independent label PRAH Recordings, who are celebrating their 10th Anniversary in 2024. Their artists include the aforementioned MF Tomlinson along with self-titled dysfunctional rapper TaliaBle, experimental electronic duo uh, and Orbury Common, who fuse ritualistic folk and shadowy electronica.

Third release tickets are now on sale via the button below.

Fair Play Festival at Band on the Wall, Manchester Soup, Manchester 6 April 2024 Tickets from £15 Book now

What's on at Band on the Wall

MusicManchester
Un-Convention Manchester 2024

Un-Convention is the ultimate independent music industry conference and showcase taking place at Band on the Wall in Manchester this November.

ActivityManchester
Beyond the Music 2024

Hear directly from the people powering the music industry in both Manchester and the UK, as well as witnessing some of the North’s upcoming talent at Beyond the Music.

from £16.75
MusicManchester
Blonde Redhead at Band on the Wall

Mercurial NYC avant-rock vets Blonde Redhead play Manchester following the release of Sit Down for Dinner, their warmest, most welcoming record yet.

from £27.50
Until
MusicManchester
Open Deck at Band on the Wall

Bring your records for a spin at our Open Deck session this Saturday! If you’ve bought some new vinyl from a local record shop this week, just show your receipt at the bar to get yourself a free 9” pizza!

Where to go near Fair Play Festival 2024

The Rose & Monkey Hotel
Manchester
Restaurant
The Rose & Monkey Hotel

The Rose & Monkey Hotel is one of the Northern Quarter’s best music-led bars, with a truly impressive beer garden. Our new favourite Manchester pub.

Stray
Manchester
Restaurant
Stray

Stylish modern bar serving sophisticated cocktails in the Northern Quarter.

Manchester
Restaurant
Foundry Project

The Northern Quarter’s self-styled ‘happiest place in Manchester’, based at the old Bluu site.

Manchester
Restaurant
The Firehouse

The Firehouse serves up quality food and cabaret every Wednesday evening in the Northern Quarter.

Ancoats
Restaurant
Ramona

If you haven’t heard of Ramona by now then where have you been? Taking Manchester by storm, Ramona is a Detroit Pizza restaurant, with a salty twist… Frozen margaritas!

Manchester
Restaurant
Mackie Mayor

A Grade II listed market building in the Northern Quarter, Mackie Mayor is a key fixture in the ever-growing Northern Quarter food and drink scene.

Fringe Bar in Manchester's Northern Quarter
Ancoats
Bar or Pub
Bar Fringe

No-frills bar on Manchester’s Swan Street. A wide selection of beers and ciders mixed with a great jukebox make this an ideal pre-Band on The Wall drinking spot.

Noi Quattro
Manchester
Restaurant
Noi Quattro

Noi Quattro is an independent pizzeria at the heart of Manchester’s Northern Quarter.

matt and phreds sign manchester music
Manchester
Music venue
Matt and Phred’s

New Orleans reaches Manchester with this dedicated jazz club in the Northern Quarter – a reliable choice for a good night out.

What's on: Music

Until
MusicManchester
Open Deck at Band on the Wall

Bring your records for a spin at our Open Deck session this Saturday! If you’ve bought some new vinyl from a local record shop this week, just show your receipt at the bar to get yourself a free 9” pizza!

Dancers at South Asian event, Dialled In
FestivalsManchester
Dialled In Manchester at NIAMOS

South Asian collective Dialled In bring a genre-spanning line-up of artists to Hulme’s iconic NIAMOS as part of a joyous all-dayer with underground music at its core.

from £22.00
the artist
MusicManchester
Waxahatchee at New Century

Mercurial singer-songwriter Katie Crutchfield AKA Waxahatchee performs at New Century in support of her new album, Tigers Blood.

from £29

Culture Guides