british rock fans have expressed their fury over the Reading and Leeds festivals’ hip-hop filled line-up, led by Kendrick Lamar.
The events, which share headliners and are held simultaneously over the same weekend in August, have long had a reputation as the U.K.’s rowdiest rock-focused festivals.
In recent years, organizers have invited a more diverse array of acts, but this year’s line-up, headed by Fall Out Boy, Kendrick, and Kings of Leon, and also featuring the likes of Post Malone, Dua Lipa, Wretch 32, J Hus and Skepta, has not gone down well with fans, many of whom have already paid more than $305 for a ticket.
Criticizing festival bosses’ decision to move away from its rock traditions, one Twitter user wrote, “Just had a glance at Reading and Leeds line up…grime and rap?! Surely this is the death of the festival, of why it existed in the first place for alternative music and real bands (sic).”
Another posting under the name @ElSamino, commented that rap, pop, and R&B fans were well catered for by other events – and was disappointed that festival organizers had missed, “A real chance to set itself apart from the rest.”
Others expressed dismay that they had already paid for their tickets, while one person dramatically added, “Music is officially dead. A festival like Reading and Leeds so well known for its rock music is mostly rap (sic).”
Ticketholders’ disappointment may have been escalated by a rumor that the Arctic Monkeys would play Reading and Leeds as part of their comeback tour, though they are not on the current bill.
Some were happy with the diverse line-up, however, with one Kendrick fan writing on Twitter, “I’ve seen a lot of hate but as someone who likes a range of music, being able to see Kendrick Lamar and Panic at the Disco on the same day is the dream!”