The 2013 festival season rolls out this weekend with Hit The Deck 2013. Now in it’s third year, 2013 sees the one-day indoor festival expand for the first time with an additional taking place in Bristol on Saturday before returning to it’s natural home of Nottingham on Sunday.

As always the festival promises a great mix of exciting bands and a wealth of familiar acts such as headliners Don Broco, We Are The In Crowd, Title Fight, Bleeding Through, We Are The Ocean and Pure Love.

While there is an abundance of up and coming bands from The Front Bottoms, Great Cynics, Mallory Knox, Attention Thieves, Natives and many more.

To give you a little taster of what to expect, we’ve picked out 10 must-see bands to check out at Hit The Deck 2013.

Title Fight
The perfect amalgamation of punk and hardcore, Title Fight’s sophomore record ‘Floral Green,’was released to rave reviews at the back end of last year and it’s not hard to see why.

Spiky riffs laden with feedback provide the backing for vocal talents Jamie Rhoden and Ned Russin to shine, and tunes like ‘Secret Society’ provide the perfect opportunity to hoist yourself up above the crowd and sing yourself hoarse.

A split release with Touche Amore has recently surfaced online and yet Hit the Deck marks the beginning of the Fight’s first European tour since ‘Floral Green’’s release so you can expect the boys to be on fighting form. (CS)

When & Where: 21:00 on the Big Deal Clothing Stage (Both Bristol and Nottingham)

Leading the list of the UK’s most underrated bands are Canterbury, who in fact hail from Farnham, Surrey. The follow-up to 2009’s ‘Thank You’ – which was given away as a free download – was released last year and featured high on many critics end-of-year ‘best of’ lists. ‘Heavy in The Day’ delivered everything you could want from a British rock band; expertly crafted, the subtle changes of tempo between songs gave rise to an uplifting journey of a record that sounds even better when heard live. What’s more, they’ve just announced plans for a fan-funded third album. (CS) Strap your heart in and get ready to fall in love at Hit The Deck.

When & Where: 19:30 on the Thekla Stage (Bristol) / 18:45 at Rescue Rooms (Nottingham)

Formerly known as Not Advised, Natives are a pop-rock five-piece from The New Forest. 2013 should see the release of their first album under the new moniker and if the snippets they’ve released so far are anything to go by, it’s going to be ace.

Having supported the likes of Deaf Havana and You Me At Six in recent years, there’s talk that these lads could be the next big thing to follow in the aforementioned bands’ footsteps.

Equally comfortable in front of the big festival crowds as they are at a sweaty club venue, expect Natives to delight the eager throngs at Hit The Deck, both north and south. (CS)

When & Where: 16:00 on the Thekla Stage (Bristol) / 14:45 at Rescue Rooms (Nottingham)

This Glaswegian quintet really kicked people in the teeth with the release of their fierce, furious and roaring debut album ‘Teenage Haze.’Packed with more biting riffs than a bear, they gained the attention they deserve. With tours coming up, supporting the likes of Stick To Your Guns and Shai Hulud, they’re raring to go. (JT)

When & Where: 14:15 at Stealth (Nottingham only)

Devil Sold His Soul
Devil Sold His Soul have always been slightly different with their ambient, post-hardcore sound but ‘Empire Of the Light’just proved how hard-working this band is. With crunching riffs and soaring vocals, this sextet is sure to blow you away with their incredible sound. Also, since this will be one of the last shows for their frontman Ed Gibbs, it’s highly suggested you head down to their set. (JT)

When & Where: 16:45 at The Forum – Front Stage (Nottingham only)

Mallory Knox
Fresh off their tour with Finch, this Cambridge quintet is a name you’ve most likely heard of by now. They’ve received glowing praise for their stunning debut album ‘Signals,’ packed to the brim with ground-shaking, arena-worthy songs. If, for some reason, you haven’t heard of this band or checked them out, then catch their set if you like your bouncy rock-pop songs. (JT)

When & Where: 14:30 at Academy 1 (Bristol) / Rock City Main Hall (Nottingham)

Fort Hope
Formed from the ashes of what was once My Passion, this Hertfordshire quartet have been gaining lots of interest with their passionate tracks, served with hearty slabs of melodic hooks. They’ll be touring with Fearless Vampire Killers later on this month, so now’s the time to get down and check them out. (JT)

When & Where: 14:00 at Academy 2 – Big Deal Clothing Stage (Bristol) / 13:00 at Basement – Big Deal Clothing Stage (Nottingham)

Whirr play shoegaze; imagine walls of sound cascading over your ears while delicate female vocals bubble just under the surface and you’d be on the right track. The full length ‘Pipe Dreams’ and the ‘Distressor’ EP are two of my favourite releases in recent memory, and are a must for fans of the shoegaze genre. The band have been around for a few years and these will be their first shows in the UK. Having had rave reviews for their live shows over in the States, Whirr are one of our most anticipated bands to check out at Hit The Deck this year. (RC)

Where & When: 15:15 at the Exchange (Bristol) / 12.30 at Stealth – Hard Times Clothing Stage (Nottingham)

The Front Bottoms
Last summer The Front Bottoms were on heavy rotation on a lot of peoples stereos. The fantastic self titled album was championed by the music press, fans and record stores alike. The Front Bottoms feature an acoustic guitar, drums, and one of the most endearing vocals I have ever heard. It’s incredibly danceable and it’s infectious melodies are perfect for loud sing alongs. The band have a great reputation for live shows packed with youthful energy and passion. Having toured the UK last year with The Menzingers, The Front Bottoms are still hot on a lot of peoples lips and with a new record (‘Talon of the Hawk’) due out in June, make sure you see the band this weekend in an intimate setting before they get much bigger in the months to come. (RC)

Where & When: 14:00 at The Thekla (Bristol) / 13:45 at The Rescue Rooms (Nottingham)

Walter Schriefels
You know Walter Schriefels as the vocalist for seminal hardcore band Gorilla Biscuits, post hardcore legends Quicksand and more recently Rival Schools as well as under his own name. The Walter Schriefels playing Hit The Deck 2013 is the solo one. However with such an iconic back catalogue there may be some surprises. Walter Schriefels last record ‘An Open Letter To The Scene’ came out way back in 2010 but I still give it regular listens. The songs on it are honest punk rock songs, played quietly. They work in such a way that the storytelling drags you in and captivates your imagination. The follow up to ‘An Open Letter To The Scene’is due out soon and will no doubt be a s warmly received as it’s predecessor. Check out Walter Schriefels for an insight into one of punks most endearing and important figures. (RC)

Where & When: 20:15 at The Thekla Top Deck – Acoustic Stage (Bristol) / 20:30 at Rescue Rooms Bar – Acoustic Stage (Nottingham)

Hit The Deck Festival links: Official Website|Facebook|Twitter

Words by Sean Reid, Jess Tagliani (JT), Chris Smith (CS) and Ryan Clayton (RC).

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