The award-winning Are You Listening? Festival returns for its eighth year in 2021 and they’ve just
announced the first batch of acts to play.
The wild piano rocker BC Camplight leads the announcement, returning to Reading having made
history headlining the first Down At The Abbey festival in September with a blistering set in the
Reading Abbey Ruins. The unique performer released his album Deportation Blues to critical acclaim
last year and has supported Suede and White Denim on UK tours; sold out his own tours; and
stunned festival audiences at Glastonbury, All Points East and BBC 6 Music Festival amongst
Brighton’s noisiest punks Dream Wife have been announced too. Following the release of their
critically acclaimed debut album last year, the thrilling three-piece have dominated the playlists at
BBC Radio 1 and BBC 6 Music; supported Garbage, The Kills and Sunflower Bean on tours
across the US and Europe; and impressed huge crowds at the world’s biggest festivals including
Iceland Airwaves, Lollapalooza and South By Southwest.
Breakbeat legends Freestylers will also be causing the dancefloor to erupt next year. The duo will be
playing hits from their glittering 20 year career that’s seen them tour the US with Lenny Kravitz; play
MTV’s Millennium Times Square party; perform on Top of the Pops; and play out to 30,000 ravers
at Glastonbury Festival.
London’s Melt Yourself Down will bring their frenetic blend of jazz, punk and dance to the festival in
April too. The exciting London band have recently worked with super-producer Youth (U2, The Verve,
James) and are closely linked with London jazz giants The Comet Is Coming, Polar Bear and
Mercury Prize nominees Sons Of Kemet.
Other acts to be announced are Little Dragon collaborator sir Was; child doom band HAQ123
(featuring two members aged under 10); IDLES-approved noise rockers JOHN; feminist DIY punks
Dream Nails; Danny Nedelko-fronted Heavy Lungs; psychedelic indie youngsters Drug Store
Romeos and buzzy post-punk quartet GHUM.
Are You Listening? Festival always showcases the cream of the crop of Reading’s many diverse
music scenes, and the first locals acts to be named so far are local UK Hip Hop kingpin Ash The
Author; grunge rockers Marisa and the Moths; and country-folk duo The August List.
The festival raises money for the local Learning Disability charity, Reading Mencap, and has raised
nearly £70,000 for the independent charity since starting back in 2013.