Katy B, Arena Stage
“There is love and sex and passion and jealousy on this record, for sure… with this album, I’ve had another relationship and that has been… realer. Life is less of a fantasy.” Hark at grown-up Katy B! And find out exactly how the ‘mature’ successor to ‘On A Mission’ is shaping up…
Credit: Pooneh Ghana/NME
Goldie Lookin Chain, Futures Stage
There were shocks all around when, inexplicably, Goldie Lookin Chain were scandalously omitted from our recent 40 Years Of Hip Hop issue. So here’s hoping the authors of such pivotal rap gems as ‘Guns Don’t Kill People Rappers Do’ and ‘Your Mother’s Got A Penis’ prove they belong among Jay Z, Kanye et al once and for all.
Credit: Hugo May/NME
Jessie Ware, Arena Stage
It’s nearly exactly a year since our Jessie released her slinky, sophisticated debut ‘Devotion’ and became everyone’s favourite sophisticated pop princess in the process. Catch her at V as she caps off a blinding 12 months – and, just maybe, to see if she throws any new songs our way…
Credit: Emilie Bailey/NME
Kings Of Leon, Virgin Media Stage
Once upon a time, the prospect of being blasted by Caleb Followill’s ‘Supersoaker’ would’ve been a filthy, shameful affair ending in a furtive trip to the clinic. But Kings Of Leon’s new single has whetted our appetite for new album ‘Mechanical Bull’; here’s hoping they don’t skimp on the new tracks this weekend.
Credit: Richard Johnson/NME
The Vaccines, Virgin Media Stage
Justin and his denim-loving troupe were looking pretty tasty at Glastonbury – they’ve now perfected that exuberant early-evening pick-me-up festival set, puffing your breakfast-beer droopy sails taught again with their bouncy riffs, ra-ra-ra singalongs and lovably puppyish exuberance.
Credit: Jenn Five/NME
Rudimental, 4Music Stage
Even if you’d never consider watching them anywhere else, V Festival is exactly the place to watch these massively popular crossover dance bods kick some serious shit in their natural environment – and you’d need to be a seriously miserable sod not to crack at least a little smile as the bodies go flying to those insistently massive beats.
Maximo Park, Stage 2
Never underestimate the power of the Park – these festival veterans will literally never tire of hammering those keys and executing those star jumps. They’ll get the crowd moving with old favourites like ‘Apply Some Pressure’ before blasting the cobwebs from your brain with the best bits of 2012’s excellently angry ‘The National Health’.
Credit: Ben Cannon/NME
Eels, Arena Stage
Life’s not all sunbeams and dandelions, you know. It is the thinking person’s duty to periodically contemplate the darker side of things. Pain. Fear. Death. Mark ‘E’ Everett and his perenially oddball indiepop crew understand this. Fortunately, with the likes of ‘Dog Faced Boy’, they also make the process beautifully bleak fun.
Lianne La Havas, Arena Stage
The singer-songwriter’s 2012 debut ‘Is Your Love Big Enough’ was one of the year’s slow-burn successes and garnered a Mercury Music Prize nomination to boot. And, if you’re feeling a tad rough from all the excess booze, her folky, gentle wares should be just the soothing tonic you’re after…
EE have been a tad snippy about the UK festival scene this summer, complaining earlier in the year that Kraftwerk had been forced to play under Calvin Harris at T In The Park. Wonder how they feel that they’ll be playing second fiddle to McFly this weekend, then? Still, ace band.
Idris Elba (DJing)
Sadly, Beady Eye’s decision to pull out of V means we won’t get a follow-up to the ding-dong Idris and Liam Gallagher had at this year’s NME Awards But still, the coolest motherfucker to ever star in a BBC police procedural will still be on hand and is dab hand at the decks, too.