News Reading & Leeds 2011: A Genuine Freakshow

Boasting seven members and with a new single release lined up for September (the double A-side ‘Our Bodies’ / ‘New Houses’), the Reading-based outfit A Genuine Freakshow play the BBC Introducing Stage on Friday at Reading, then on Saturday in Leeds.

Have you played Reading and Leeds before?
No we haven’t, so we are really looking forward to it!

Have you been before as fans?
Yes, many times. I grew up just outside of Leeds so it was the first festival I went to, back in 2001. Marilyn Manson was on just before Eminem headlined, and it was incredible until some guys threatened to stab us if we didn’t let them go in front of us. Good times! Now that I live in Reading, I haven’t been for the weekend, but I’ve popped down to watch a few bands over the last few years, most notably Rage Against The Machine and Radiohead.

Reading and Leeds is known as a ‘rock’ festival. What’s the least rock ‘n roll thing you’ve ever done?
We are probably the least rock ‘n roll band you’ve ever come across! Our van is usually full of people playing cards, chess or Pro Evo 4 when we could be out there driving Limos into swimming pools or whatever it is Brother et al are up to these days.

A few rainy festivals this summer have seen artists going on stage in their wellington boots. Is this something you’ve done or would consider?
Well yes, I’ve done it before thinking, ‘Oh yes, look at me, how cool am I!’ But when you finish your set and all your gear is covered in mud and you’re the only one who’s going to clean it off, you don’t feel quite so rock star then!

Which artists are you hoping to catch live at Reading and/or Leeds?
I know our rhythm section will be heading over to watch Deftones, and I think someone said that UNKLE are playing, but I’m not sure if that’s true. The line-up on the day we are playing doesn’t really do it for me so I’ll probably be watching my friends’ bands Arthur Rigby and the Baskervylles and Dry The River.

What’s the secret to festival success?
Not getting hammered the night before you play! And taking lots of bin liners with you. They are the most useful item at a festival - you can use them for just about anything.

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