Independent promoters Heavy Pop have been bringing the best in alternative music to Reading and Oxford for over a decade. They are responsible for curating such essential award-winning festivals as Are You Listening?, Down At The Abbey and the Beat Connection All-dayer. Plus, their top tier gigs have seen headline sets from the likes of IDLES, Wolf Alice, Royal Blood, The Amazons, The Big Moon, Sundara Karama – and many more!
Booker / promoter Dave Maul had already become a major figure on the local scene originally working under the moniker Monkey Suit before teaming up with friend Shane Daunt from Black & White Music in 2018.
Taking their name from Manc art rockers WU LFY track; the past thirteen years have seen them grow from strength to strength.
Gigantic asked Dave about special Heavy Pop shows from the past, and Bristol boys IDLES were his favourites;
“Seeing IDLES play a free entry gig to 20/30 people on a rainy weeknight when 'Well Done' had just been released was a little special. They were lovely and bought my mate a shot as it was his birthday and even then you could see just how great they were live. IDLES came back a couple of years later to play our Are You Listening? Festival and by that time, the word was well and truly out!”
Locals know that Heavy Pop set their bar high and ensure only the best bands and artists play at their gigs, attracting audiences from well outside the region. Dave tells us even more about the bookings he’s most proud of:
“Other gigs include Gaz Coombes doing a solo show (as a Supergrass fan that was cool!) and I had been on a couple of dates with my now partner at the time. I put her and her sister on the guest list which in hindsight didn't harm my chances (ha).
Jon Hopkins playing in the Grade 1 listed Concert Hall and setting off the smoke alarm minutes after the gig finished due to the amount of haze in the room. Any gig we've done with Kathryn Joseph - an underrated talented and very funny and friendly woman!
Promoting local boys The Amazons from the early days to selling out the 1700 cap Reading Hexagon in advance was a moment for them, us and for the town.“
Keep scrolling to see just some of the awesome Heavy Pop gigs hitting Reading in the coming months. You can find their full listings HERE.
Veteran psyche rock songwriter Robyn Hitchcock plays a very special headline show next month.
21/09 Robyn Hitchcock – South Street Arts Centre, Reading
Scouse slackers Courting are recognised as amongst the best of the new generation of Merseyside music.
13/10 Courting – The Face Bar, Reading
Signed to innovative label Warp; pioneering post punk songwriter LoneLady is as crucial as she is compelling.
28/10 LoneLady – South Street Arts Centre, Reading
Punk rockers TV Priest are signed to none-other than iconic label Sub Pop, and this year saw them drop second album My Other People.