Review: Long Division festival, Wakefield
Whilst the aforementioned festivals may have the bigger established and legacy acts drawn to their stages year on year, what sets Long Division apart is its platform for emerging artists to shine in an intimate setting before they explode onto the world stage.
Yard Act’s previous incarnations of Post War Glamour Girls and Menace Beach cut their teeth on the stages of Long Division long before Elton John and Jools Holland took notice. If you want to be at the cutting edge of breaking bands, Long Division is the place to be.
Sun and music go hand in hand with bars and venues packed out with fans clamouring for a chance to see the likes of Low Hummer, Shelf Lives, Field Music and a set from LYR featuring Poet Laureate Simon Armitage.
Every street is packed with bands, roadies lugging gear from vans or even the back of mum and dad’s car, setting up and preparing for their slot. It is this DIY attitude that sets Long Division apart from the larger festivals. There’s no upper band hierarchy, no egos and no sense that your time-slot is any indication of your worth. Everyone is happy to lend a cable or an amp to ensure that their fellow line-up makes the stage. Its community-based camaraderie is Long Division’s unsung hero.
Even though the city festival did return last year after ‘the virus that killed music’ had mostly passed, this year feels like a real homecoming for the organisers. It feels like a factory reset and a Long Division 2.0. A huge deep breath and a sigh of relief that we have all made it this far. Musicians are hungry to be performing work they have been writing in lockdown, fans are starving for new artists and music to get excited about.
Long Division not only opens the menu, it shows you the under the counter items and specials board in an exhilarating all you can eat experience.