The Scottish band will headline the dual event for the third time across the Bank Holiday, having replaced Queens Of The Stone Age on the line-up (they pulled out last month due to COVID-related travel restrictions).
- READ MORE: The road to Reading & Leeds – Biffy Clyro’s raucous history of the rites-of-passage festival
During a retrospective interview with NME, Biffy frontman Simon Neil looked back at the band’s long history with R&L – from their very first booking 20 years ago right through to 2021. Looking ahead, he noted the sense of occasion in the festival returning after a year away due to the pandemic.
“It’s a real shame that Queens Of The Stone Age can’t make it, but I was originally really heartbroken that we weren’t going to be playing this year,” Neil told us. “When we got the call I was like, ‘Fucking right – we’ll do it!’”
He continued: “It’ll be celebrating so much more than a weekend of music. We’ll all be together at last. It’s more important than any Reading & Leeds before. This time last year I just couldn’t envisage more than 20 people standing together ever again as I’m a bit of a cynic.”
As for what fans can expect from their 10th appearance this weekend, Neil told NME that Biffy’s R&L hat-trick will be “pure joy” and “the best show of the weekend”.
“We’re going to play a bunch of stuff from [2020 album] ‘A Celebration Of Endings’, and we’ve also completed another new record, which should be coming out in October, but I don’t know if we’ll play anything from that,” he continued.
“We’ll probably save that for our own headline shows. We can’t play for two hours, so we’re just going to go out there and give everyone a good time. It’s going to have to be a biggie. It’s going to be a gig for the ages.”
Hailing the rest of the line-up, Neil added: “It’s a really fantastic bill. The way that Reading & Leeds has evolved over the years is so healthy. There’s so much young music on there and that’s where the most exciting stuff happens.
“Not to take away from the best show of the weekend, which will of course be Biffy fucking Clyro, but I really hope people appreciate that hunger to soak up as much new music as they can.”
Biffy Clyro will headline the Main Stage West at Leeds Festival tomorrow (Friday, August 27) and at Reading Festival on Sunday (August 29).
Meanwhile, it has been announced that Reading & Leeds ’21 will be offering the coronavirus vaccine to festival-goers at both sites. As with other festivals this summer, R&L ticketholders will be required to show their COVID status to gain entry to the event.
Check back at NME here for the latest news, reviews, interviews, photos and more from Reading & Leeds 2021.