Festivals, Oporto and the ‘Next Big Thing’: 2023 according to Crash Records

“I have no worries that 2024 won’t be filled with great music and gigs for everyone!”

If there’s anyone that knows a thing or two about music, it’s Crash Records.

2023 has been a huge year – but nobody knows the ins and outs of the city better than the independent businesses that keep the cogs whirring – and so rather than us telling you what’s been going on this year, we’ve reached out to five different small business owners to give us the lowdown on 2023.

With three decades of Leeds and industry knowledge under its belt, Crash has remained a constant throughout it all: lockdowns, turn of the century and has seen more changes to the city centre than most of us could imagine.

So it only feels right to see what 2023 has meant to the long-standing store and quiz the team on the intimate signings, gigs and festivals that have made up the year, as well as some new bands to listen out for in the new year.

Matthew from Crash Records kindly took the time to tell us what 2023 meant to Crash, keep reading to find out what this year has had in store…

It’s been one heck of a year! What have you been up to? Tell us about any major events, exciting moments etc.

It’s been a non-stop year for us and we’ve enjoyed every second of it! We’ve been blessed with great customers and great music. Exciting moments for me include the rush of Record Store Day, a day dedicated to celebrating independent record stores with limited releases available first over the counter only. It’s always amazing to see so many people queuing down the street before we’ve even opened!

We’ve also had the pleasure of hosting some great bands in-store, around Leeds and across the country with our album launch shows. Even setting up shop at Temple Newsam for Live at Leeds and Slam Dunk weekend and Baldersby Park for Deer Shed Festival, giving fans the opportunity to meet their favourite artists from the festival and leaving with bags full of records!

What was one highlight from 2023 that you’ll always remember? 

A personal highlight for me was setting up our Next Big Thing feature, giving up and coming artists a platform to showcase their music to our audience of music lovers. The initial response was unbelievable to me with over 100 artists applying and many more since then. It’s such an important thing to support music on all levels and as a record shop we are very lucky to be in a position where we can help new artists in sharing their music.

What are you looking forward to in 2024? 

2024 is already looking strong with early releases from The Last Dinner Party, Courting and Yard Act that I’m personally very excited for! As with every year I have no worries that 2024 won’t be filled with great music and gigs for everyone!

What new artists should we look out for in 2024?

If you’re on the lookout for new artists I’d keep a keen eye on the Next Big Thing, we post a new artist every Saturday across our socials. I’ve loved all of our featured artists but a few personal favourites of mine so far have been Coal Mob, Allora and Static Caravan, you should definitely give them all a listen! And maybe try my own band, Mince 😉

Where is one place that people should go and visit next year?

If I had to pick just one place in Leeds it would have to be the good ship, Oporto. Sit back with a pint of Cowbell and enjoy a well deserved rest after 2023!

Feature Image – CRASH RECORDS

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