Fylde coast grunge rockers heading back to top festival

St Annes band Darlia, fronted by Nathan Day, centre
St Annes band Darlia, fronted by Nathan Day, centre
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St Annes band Darlia are heading back to Reading and Leeds Festival this summer.

The trio bring their debut headline tour to a close 
tonight, while also marking the release this week of mini album Petals.

The grunge revivalists – although frontman Nathan Day hates the ‘grunge’ label often applied to the band – will be seen on the Festival Republic stage at Reading and Leeds which runs over the Bank Holiday weekend, August 28 to 30.

Last night saw the festival’s headline act The Libertines announced as well as 50 other acts on the double-bill event.

Speaking to Nathan recently, festival dates were still under wraps, but he has previously spoken of Darlia’s summer season experience in 2014 when they drew capacity crowds at Glastonbury and Reading and Leeds – describing the latter as ‘phenomenal’

And they’ve been making the most of the opportunity to play live in their biggest series of headline gigs to date.

“It’s great to do things like our own dates,” Nathan said. “And I’m probably speaking for the rest of the band when I say if you’re active in this business, it’s great. When you have a month off, you really appreciate it when you are back doing what you love.”

Nathan’s recalled the band’s first gigs in London, playing to a 100-strong crowd, which only sold out on the night – compared with last week’s capital gig to 650 fans, which was sold out three weeks in advance.

“We don’t take it for granted at all,” he said. “We have played in front of, literally, one or two people, and that’s horrible.

“So it feels amazing to be where we are now.”

The shows, backed up with mini album Petals – released on Monday – have proven something of a breakthrough for the three St Annes lads. Nathan’s joined by bassist Dave Williams and drummer Jack Bentham, who all walked away from their brooms and bleach at Lytham St Annes Technology and Performing Arts College less than two years ago to sign a record deal.

Petals is a collection of the band’s early tracks, which Nathan has previously described as a ‘half step backwards before going forwards’ ahead of a full album release slated for later this year.

Their single releases to date, Candy Man, Dear Diary and Stars Are Aligned, all feature, as well as a new recording of debut Queen Of Hearts – which Nathan wrote in his early teens, and lead single I’ve Never Been To Ohio is out on Monday.

The former Lytham St Annes High School pupil has been playing guitar and writing songs since the age of nine, and joining forces with Jack at 13, resulting in 11 albums worth of music in their back catalogue. And instead of 
allowing this to go to waste, Petals is bringing that 

“We wanted these songs together as a collective,” Nathan, 20, explained. “I have seen a comment somewhere, about Petals, suggesting we have run out of ideas, which is so funny; I could not run out of songwriting ideas if I tried.

“There’s no pressure on that front at all. I feel pressure speaking to the bus driver, or ordering food, but not at all when it comes to songwriting.

“The songs on Petals are for people interested in Darlia as we build up more to the full album.” Their tour comes to an end tonight. But they’ll be back on the road in April, supporting The Wombats, with all but two dates in Glasgow and Newcastle already sold out.

For more information and tickets, visit www.darlia.co.uk.