Castlefield Bowl Sounds of the City gig guide
Next week, Castlefield Bowl will welcome thousands of music fans back to Manchester as the 2022 edition of Sounds of the City gets underway. Each year, the open-air music extravaganza brings together some of the biggest names in rock, indie and pop – and this year is no exception. Kicking off on Tuesday, June 28 with Scotsman Lewis Capaldi opening the series, it will close on Saturday, July 9 with Primal Scream’s Screamadelica Live.
The Castlefield show has become an integral part of Manchester’s rich music tapestry over recent years, with past concerts seeing show stopping performances from Arcade Fire, The Streets, New Order, Chic and Elbow. Last year’s series took place in September due, with Foals, Lewis Capaldi and Crowded House being moved to 2022 – hence the bumper edition. If you’re heading out to any of this year’s shows, here’s everything you need to know, from door times for artists and how to plan your night at the gig.
Tuesday, June 28 – Lewis Capaldi
Lewis Capaldi performs on the main stage at Parklife 2022 (Image: Adam Vaughan)
To say Capaldi had a rapid rise to fame would be somewhat of an understatement. After releasing his EP ‘Bruises’ in 2017, he quickly became a household name, becoming the fastest unsigned artist to reach 25 million plays on Spotify. His hit songs, ‘Someone You Loved’ – which reached number 1 in the US – and ‘Bruises’, ‘Hold Me While You Wait’, confirmed his star status and his album ‘Divinely Uninspired to a Hellish Extent’ topped 1 million UK sales, and more than 3 billion streams worldwide.
His Castlefield Bowl gig will be the second time the Scottish singer has performed in Manchester this month, after taking to the stage at Parklife Festival just a few weeks ago. It might have been three years since he released any new music, but he’s still drawing in the crowds. He’ll be joined on stage by special guests JP Saxe and Emie Nathan.
Doors open: 5.30pm JP Saxe: TBC Emkie Nathan: TBC
Lewis Capaldi: TBC Curfew: 10:30pm Tickets: Tickets, which are priced at 52.18, are virtually sold out, but for late availability check here .
Wednesday, June 29 – Foals
Foals (Image: Alex Knowles)
They’ve steadily risen to be one of Britain’s most loved contemporary bands, and the Oxford-based quintet don’t show any signs of slowing down.
Early tracks like ‘Mathletics’, ‘Cassius’ and ‘Hammer’ caught the attention of fans and critics, but it wasn’t until 2013 Holy’s Fire that – nominated for a Mercury Prize – that they really garnered mainstream success. Their next album ‘What Went Down’ won the band their first BRIT award nomination for Best Live Band in 2016, then after a brief hiatus they returned in 2019 with ‘Exits’, and headlined Boardmasters, Y Not Festival, Truck Festival and INmusic Festival. Next Wednesday, they’ll be supported by indie rock band Wet Leg and American punk rock band The Regrettes.
Doors open: 5.30pm Wet Leg: TBC The Regrettes: TBC
Curfew: 10:30pm Tickets: Tickets, which are priced at 43.95, are virtually sold out, but for late availability check here .
Thursday, June 30 – Crowded House
Crowded House will be at Sounds in the City on Thursday, June 30
With classics like ‘Don’t Dream It’s Over’, ‘Weather With You’, and ‘Fall at Your Feet’ in their arsenal, Crowded House are sure to impress fans when they take to the stage at Castlefield Bowl next Thursday. The Melbourne band was formed in 1985, with founding members Neil Finn and Nick Seymour the sole constant members of the group since its formation.
The band had to significant periods of international chart success, the first with their self-titled debut album, which reached number 12 on the US Album Chart, and again with their third and fourth albums – Woodface and Together Alone – and the compilation Reoccurring Dream, which included hits ‘Distant Sun’, ‘Locked Out’ and ‘Instinct’. Doors open: 5.30pm Special guests: TBC
Curfew: 10:30pm Tickets: Tickets, which are priced at 55.25 for unreserved standing, are virtually sold out, but for late availability check here .
Friday, July 1 – The Libertines
The Libertines will perform at Sounds of the City on Friday, July 1 (Image: Roger Sargent)
When the London four-piece performed at Manchester Academy last December, the onstage chemistry was evidently still there between brothers-in-arms Barat and Doherty – who formed the band back in 1997. This summer, they celebrate the 20th anniversary of ‘Up the Bracket’ with some major outdoor shows, kicking off with Sounds of The City.
With one of the strongest and most well-known back catalogues of British indie rock music, crowds will surely be up for a good night. Doors open: 5.30pm Special guests:TBC
Curfew: 10:30pm Tickets: Tickets, which are priced at 47.50, are virtually sold out, but for late availability check here .
Saturday, July 2 – James
James announce Rhyl Events Arena gig (Image: SJM)
Manchester’s very own James are next up, taking the first Saturday slot of Sounds of The City. Formed back in Whalley Range in 1982, the group had four top 10s in the UK Singles Charts and nine top 10s on the UK Albums Chart in the 90s.
Arguably, the band’s best known singles – Come Home, Sit Down, She’s A Star and Laid – will all get a play next week, as well as some of their later output. Doors open: 5.30pm Special guests:TBC
Curfew: 10:30pm Tickets: Tickets, which are priced at GBP76.64, are virtually sold out, but for late availability check here .
Tuesday July 5 – Pixies
The Pixies will perform at Castlefield Bowl on Tuesday, July 5 (Image: TRAVIS SHINN)
Veteran Alt-rock legends Pixies will play Castlefield Bowl a week on Tuesday ahead of the September release of their next album. Perhaps best known for their tracks ‘Where is My Mind’, ‘Debaser’ and ‘Here Comes Your Man’, the four-piece are one of the most influential bands still active today.
They’ll be taking to the Castlefield Bowl stage on Tuesday, July 5 and will be joined by support from The Slow Readers Club & Klangstof. Doors open: 5.30pm Special guests: TBC
Curfew: 10:30pm Tickets: Tickets, which are priced at GBP50.50 for unreserved standing, are virtually sold out, but for late availability check here .
Wednesday July 6 – Sam Fender
Sam Fender will perform at Sounds of the City on Wednesday, July 6 (Image: Charlotte Patmore)
North Shields’ finest, singer-songwriter Sam Fender – named one of the BBC’s Sounds of 2018 alongside Lewis Capaldi – is next up. Fender shot to fame after his debut album, Hypersonic Missiles came out in September 2019 and has gone on to perform at a series of festivals and gigs across the UK.
He also supported Bob Dylan and Neil Young in Hyde Park in 2019, later supporting Kings of Leon at Fusion Presents in Liverpool. Doors open: 5.30pm Special guests: TBC
Curfew: 10:30pm Tickets: Tickets, which are priced at GBP38.95 are sold out, but you can join the waiting list here .
Friday July 8 – Hacienda Classical
Hacienda Classical at Castlefield Bowl, Sounds of the City 2021 (Image: Scott M Salt Photography)
Hacienda Classical returns with accompaniment from the Manchester Camerata and special guests Soul II Soul, Peter Hook, DJ Paulette, Tom Wainwright for its sixth event at Castlefield Bowl in what has become an annual and signature event for FAC 51 The Hacienda in its home city. This year also marks 40 years of the Hacienda, which is sure to make this year’s performance even more memorable.
The clubbing classical crossover concept has proved wildly successful, and a highlight of the Manchester music calendar. Doors open: 6pm Soul II Soul: TBC
Peter Hook: TBC DJ Paulette: TBC Curfew: 10:30pm
Tickets: Tickets, which are priced at GBP50.50, are virtually sold out, but for late availability check here.
Saturday 9 July – Primal Scream presents Screamadelica Live
Bobby Gillespie of Primal Scream (Image: MEN UGC)
Screamadelica live – a series of live dates where fans can hear the Scottish rock band play their seminal 1991 album in full, is heading to Castlefield. coincides with the 30th anniversary of the band’s third album. The band, who will also play Glasgow’s Queen’s Park and London’s Alexandra Palace, first came together as a group in 1984. The initial lineup featured Andrew Innes on keyboards and guitar, Robert Young on second guitar, and on vocals and bass, Bobby Gillespie.
Doors open: 5.30pm The Mysterines: TBC Lonelady: TBC
Walt Disco: TBC Curfew: 10:30pm Tickets: Tickets, which are priced at GBP54.65, are virtually sold out, but for late availability check here .
How to get there
(Image: Scott M Salt Photography)
Castlefield Bowl is located on Rice Street in Castlefield, postcode M3 4JR, and is just on the edge of the city centre off Deansgate.
There are two entrances for ticket holders – via Duke Street/Castle Street which is also the disabled access entrance, or via Liverpool Road where you access the site down quite a few steps. By public transport It’s about a five minute walk from Castlefield Bowl to the main line train station at Deansgate.
At present, there hasn’t been any further rail strikes announced that may disrupt services. Here you can also access the Deansgate-Castlefield tram station where there are trams every 12 minutes connecting to all of the main tram routes in the Greater Manchester area. By car
If you’re driving, a number of NCP’s Great Northern car parks are just a short walk away. There are 1,240 spaces in total and prices start from around GBP3.95 per hour. Use the postcode M3 4EE if using a sat nav.
The NCP Manchester Central next to Bridgewater Hall car park is also nearby, with 643 spaces. For sat navs the postcode is M15 4PS. The next nearest NCP is on Spinningfields on Quay Street with 680 spaces, where night parking after 5pm is priced at GBP8.95.
For sat navs the postcode is M3 3BE.
Food and drink
There are usually a wide variety of street food stalls and beer tents where you can buy hot food and drink around the site including the ‘food village’ at the Canal Street entrance. Last year, street food on site included Grandad’s Sausages; Wrap Up burritos, nachos, halloumi and fries; and Tibetan Kitchen. There were also two main bars serving alcoholic beverages and soft drinks, plus a gin bar and prosecco bar at the very top end of the site up the steps.
For those unfamiliar with the area, there are also a host of restaurants, bars and pubs along Liverpool Road on the way into Castlefield, as well as the popular bars and restaurants on and around Castle Street in the heart of Castlefield.
The weather forecast
We might be basking in 27c temperatures today, but as we all know, Manchester’ weather can be slightly unpredictable – so it’s best to be prepared. The current long forecast from the Met Office for the UK next week suggests there will be some sunny spells mid-week, but also the potential for showers in the north and northwest. Further into the period, the north is expected to continue to be unsettled with showers and longer spells of rain.
Currently, on Tuesday, when Lewis Capaldi takes to the stage, the weather is looking warm but the temperature may reach 19c, while on Wednesday for Foals it’s expected to be cloudy changing to light showers by late morning. We’ll keep you posted on the latest weather updates for the whole series here. Get the latest What’s On news – from food and drink to music and nightlife – straight to your inbox with our daily newsletter.