FESTIVAL REVIEW : TRNSMT Festival 2023 Review Day Two – Swim School, Kasabian and Sam Fender Deliver Outstanding Performances

The TRNSMT Festival is widely regarded as one of the most popular music festivals in the United Kingdom, attracting thousands of music enthusiasts each year. The festival’s second day offered a unique experience, with a younger crowd despite the age restriction of 16 and over. As music lovers flocked to the festival, the three stages featured a diverse line-up of bands delivering outstanding performances.

The festival showcased an eclectic mix of genres, from indie rock to electronic music, catering to the diverse tastes of its audience. The appearances of Sam Fender and Kasabian as headliners further elevated the excitement in the air.

Edinburgh’s Swim School debuted on the renowned Main Stage at this year’s esteemed TRNSMT Festival, delivering a performance that has garnered widespread acclaim and made an indelible mark on the audience. The band produced an enchanting atmosphere that reverberated throughout the crowd, captivating and enthralling everyone who witnessed it thanks to vocalist Alice Johnson’s mesmerising vocals and exceptional guitar skills.

During their impressive setlist, Swim School showcased their latest single, “Bored,” which not only exemplified their unique sound but also highlighted Johnson’s commanding and enthralling vocals. The band flawlessly performed tracks from their latest EP, Duality, with the mesmerising rendition of “Delirious” standing out as a truly exceptional moment. The culmination of their performance came with the poignant and evocative delivery of “See Red.” The undeniable passion and infectious energy emanating from Swim School’s performance elevated the atmosphere to new heights, with their presence on the TRNSMT Festival’s Main Stage leaving an enduring impression on the memories of all those fortunate enough to be part of the experience. As an up-and-coming band, Swim School’s remarkable performance solidifies their position as one to closely follow in the future.

Brooke Combe is no stranger to the festival circuit, having performed at numerous events across the UK. She gave a remarkable performance with a four-piece band during her early slot on the Main Stage at the TRNSMT Festival, showcasing her musical talent in full.

Combe’s set began as a seemingly simple affair, with her soulful pop tunes resonating with the early morning crowd. However, as the set progressed, it became clear that there was more to her music than initially met the eye. The addition of big guitar licks and bluesy rock undertones served to transform the performance into a truly unforgettable experience.

What was most impressive about Combe’s performance was her assuredness as a performer. She seemed completely at ease on stage, commanding the attention of the audience with her powerful vocals and commanding presence. This was a testament to her experience as a musician, and it was clear that she had worked hard to perfect her craft.

Maise Peters, the talented singer and songwriter, recently wowed the crowds at the TRNSMT Festival with a set that was full of her hits as well as some new songs from her latest album. The audience was treated to an unforgettable performance that showcased the artist’s incredible vocal range and songwriting prowess.

One of the standout tracks from the performance was “Body Better,” a powerful and emotive ballad that highlights Peters’ ability to connect with her audience on a deep level. The audience responded to the song’s eerie melody and heartfelt lyrics by visibly moving.

Another highlight of the set was “I’m Trying (Not Friends),” a catchy and upbeat track that showcases Peters’ ability to craft infectious pop hooks. The song’s irresistible melody had the crowd dancing and singing along, and it was clear that it had quickly become a fan favourite.

Of course, no Maise Peters set would be complete without a performance of the hit single “Blonde.” This upbeat and infectious track has become a signature song for Peters, and it was clear that the crowd was eagerly anticipating its performance. When the opening notes rang out, the energy in the audience surged, and Peters delivered a flawless rendition that had the crowd shouting in excitement.

The Dublin-based band Inhaler drew a massive crowd, surpassing even the numbers present for the Friday night headliners. The band, playing mostly from their latest album Cuts And Bruises, delivered an electrifying performance that left the audience in high spirits. Their return to TRNSMT after a subdued show in 2021 was a triumph, and one that cements the band’s reputation as ones to watch in the coming years.

Inhaler’s setlist for the day included hits from their latest album, such as These Are The Days, Dublin In Ecstasy, Love Will Get You There, Cheer Up Baby, and My Honest Face. The band’s energy and enthusiasm were palpable, and the audience responded in kind, chanting along to the songs and fully immersing themselves in the performance.

It’s clear from the huge turnout and enthusiastic response that Inhaler’s future is bright, with many fans speculating that the band will soon be headlining festivals of their own. It’s no surprise that they seem destined for higher billing in the coming years, with their unique blend of indie rock and post-punk resonating with audiences around the world. For those lucky enough to catch their TRNSMT set, it was an unforgettable experience that left them eagerly anticipating what the band has in store next.

Teddy Swims, the rising Georgia soulman, recently took to the stage at King Tut’s stage during the TRNSMT festival. Known for his powerful voice and soulful sound, Teddy Swims delivered a standout performance that left the audience awestruck.

Hailing from Atlanta, Georgia, Teddy Swims has been gaining popularity in the music industry with his distinctive blend of soul, R&B, and pop music. His soulful voice and captivating stage presence have earned him a devoted fan base and critical acclaim.

During his performance at the TRNSMT festival, Teddy Swims showcased his musical prowess with an electrifying rendition of the classic hit “Don’t Stop Believing” by Journey. His soulful vocals and impressive range mesmerised the audience, and many people felt inspired to sing along to the catchy chorus.

Overall, Teddy Swims’ performance at the King Tut’s stage at the TRNSMT festival was a testament to his talent and artistry as a musician. With his unique blend of soul and pop music, he has established himself as one of the most exciting rising stars in the music industry today. Georgia, his home state, is proud to call him its own.

Manchester rapper Aitch delivered a compelling and dynamic performance that left his fans begging for more. The young artist, known for his confident flow and infectious energy, took to the stage with his hit track “Safe to Say” and quickly had the crowd on their feet.

As the night progressed, Aitch demonstrated his versatility with a beautiful cover of Oasis’ beloved hit “Wonderwall”. The Glasgow audience was in full voice, singing along to every word of the classic tune. The rapper’s rendition was a memorable moment that added a touch of nostalgia to an already electrifying set.

Aitch continued to impress with tracks such as “Take Me Back to London”, “UFO”, “Psycho”, and “Rain”. He kept the energy up throughout the show with his infectious charisma and relentless flow. The rapper proved that he’s a force to be reckoned with in the current UK rap scene, and the TRNSMT Festival audience loved every moment of his performance.

Overall, Aitch delivered a powerful set that showcased his talent and left a lasting impression on his fans. With a range of hits and a stunning cover of “Wonderwall”, the rapper proved that he’s a force to be reckoned with on the UK music scene. Whether it’s his catchy tracks or his engaging live show, Aitch is definitely one to watch in the coming months and years.

Among the standout performers was The Wombats, a Liverpool-based rock band that left a lasting impression on the crowd.

Despite the increasingly dreary weather, The Wombats went above and beyond to provide an electrifying performance that kept the crowd engaged and entertained. They upped the ante by embellishing their own suggestion on the peppy Let’s Dance to Joy Division, a track that is already popular among their fans. The band’s performance was made even more captivating by the addition of a troupe of dancers in wombat costumes, adding an element of novelty to their set.

It was evident that The Wombats had put a lot of thought and effort into making their performance stand out. Their choice of outfits for the dancers was a masterstroke that made their set more memorable. It is a testament to the band’s creativity and desire to thrill their fans. Overall, The Wombats’ performance at the TRNSMT Festival was a resounding success, demonstrating their musical capabilities and showmanship.

The TRNSMT Festival was charged with electricity as Kasabian hit the stage, igniting the crowd from the very start. The band’s frontman, Serge Pizzorno, has seamlessly transitioned into his new role, exuding an air of confidence and dominance that leaves no doubts as to why he was chosen for the position. As a long-time songwriter, leader, and co-singer, Pizzorno’s presence on stage was commanding, with his swagger and snarl captivating the audience throughout the band’s career-spanning setlist.

From the grizzled, fuzzy riff of ‘Underdog’ to the anthemic ‘LSF’ and the ultimate crowd-pleaser, ‘Fire’, Kasabian had the crowd bouncing to the rhythm of their music. With every strum of the guitar and beat of the drum, the band’s energy intensified, inciting utter chaos across the sodden field. It was evident that Kasabian had mastered the art of creating an engaging and unforgettable live performance, leaving the audience yearning for more.

As they played hits such as ‘Club Foot’ and ‘Fire’, the crowd’s excitement grew exponentially, with fans singing along to every word. Pizzorno’s stage presence was magnetic, as he effortlessly connected with the audience, captivating them with his confident demeanour. It was a night to remember as Kasabian delivered a performance that was both exhilarating and unforgettable, leaving the audience in a frenzy of excitement and energy that lingered long after the band left the stage.

Sam Fender‘s rise to the top of the TRNSMT Festival has been a remarkable journey. Having first appeared in 2018 on the King Tuts Stage, he went on to open proceedings on the Main Stage a year later. Now, four years later, he has returned to the festival and is headlining it. This comes just a few weeks after he played two milestone shows at St James’ Park in his native Newcastle, which is a testament to his growing popularity and success.

Fender’s performance at TRNSMT was nothing short of exceptional. He began with the searing stomp of ‘Will We Talk?’ and followed it up with big hits like ‘Getting Started’ and ‘Dead Boys’, which became an unlikely festival singalong with a poignant message. To the delight of his fans, he played all his greatest hits, from his Springsteen-esque saxophone-laden ‘The Borders’ to the heart-cleaving sadness of ‘Dead Boys’.

One of the most memorable moments of his performance was his cover of Frightened Rabbit’s ‘Modern Leper’. Accompanied by his Scottish guitar tech, Fraser, Fender led the ecstatic crowd through a mass singalong of the song. Frightened Rabbit were a beloved Scottish band, and it was clear that Fender’s tribute to them was heartfelt and resonated with the audience.

Fender’s performance at TRNSMT confirmed him as one of the most talented and exciting artists of his generation. With his humility, unflinching honesty, and relatability, he has captured the hearts of fans across the UK and beyond. His performance at TRNSMT demonstrated that he has the talent and charisma to become one of the biggest names in music, and we can’t wait to see what he does next.

Review by Karen Edmond

Photographs by James Edmond

Author: Karen Edmond

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