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Sold-out shows and surreal moments: Corella reflect on their meteoric rise

Corella might just be your favourite new Manchester band

Meet Corella, the band whose infectious tunes and electrifying performances are igniting stages across the UK.

They just might be the next big band out of the city, with a playlist of groovy guitar-driven indie tunes that should be your first stop at building a summer playlist.


With their debut album, “Once Upon a Weekend,” freshly unleashed into the world, Corella are on a journey that’s been years in the making.

Joel and Ben, the band’s founding members, reminisce about their fortunate beginnings: “We all met at university, randomly ended up in the same house,” Joel recounts.

“It was fate,” Ben chimes in, “it was a huge stroke of luck but it just felt like it was almost meant to be, you know?

“We all liked the same music, all played a different instrument. The parts just fell into place.”

The Manchester influence 

Their sound, a fusion of indie-rock with eclectic influences, has been honed through years of playing together in Manchester. 

“We started off at Joshua Brooks, did Zombie Shack, Sound Control,” Joel reminisces.

“It’s such a great city to be a band in; there’s loads of ace venues that are willing to give a young band a go. 

“Now, we’ve worked our way up to venues like the Ritz,” Ben adds, “That’s the one goal of like most Manchester bands – to headline a show there.”

I asked them if one day we could see them in the Co-Op Arena, and both laughed, saying “Maybe!”

What do Corella Sound like?

Ben explained some of their influences. 

He said: “The bands we were listening to in the early stages were maybe still similar to what we’re listening to now, like Little Comets and Foals.

“Also, Two Door Cinema Club, and Bombay Bicycle Club. It was pretty much indie-oriented but also diverse music.

“So I guess we took influence from everything in how we write the tunes and stuff like that.”

Joel explained how they sound. 

He said: “For us, it’s indie at the end of the day. But we’ve carved out our lane where there’s a recognisable Corella sound.

“The flow of the guitars, the vocals, the bass lines and stuff. It’s very summery, very upbeat.

“But then, on the recent album, there are so many different variations of songs we can come out with. We wanted to tick a few boxes. We wanted to have some bops, some bangers, some ballads. You’ve got to mix it up.”

Once Upon a Weekend by Corella

Their debut album, a summary of their journey so far, delves into their experiences growing up in northern towns. “It’s about love, lust, and misadventure,” Joel explained..

Produced by Sugarhouse, the album bursts with life, showcasing the band’s evolution over the years.

“Some tracks are just for fun,” Ben notes, “while others reflect on our journey.”

Joel added “We were living this ridiculous life of going out at the weekend and playing these huge gigs in front of 100s of people, sometimes 1000s at festivals then we would just be going back to our 9 to 5 jobs.

“It was surreal. I think this new record sort of captures that spirit and the madness of that.”

Their new record hasn’t gone unnoticed by some of the big radio stations, too. 

It’s becoming increasingly more difficult for Indie music to get airplay on BBC Radio One, having been crowded out by big music industry pop music. 

But Corella seems to be bucking this trend, receiving loads of radio airplay – not just on BBC Radio One, but Radio X and XS Manchester, too. 

Singles like “Lady Messiah,” “Don’t Stop Me,” and “Head Underwater” have received airplay on BBC Radio 1, Radio X, and more. “It’s amazing to hear our songs on the radio,” Joel admits, “especially coming from northern towns.”

A huge summer for Corella

As they gear up for a huge summer of festivals and gigs, including coveted slots at Reading & Leeds Festival and Isle of Wight Festival, excitement is palpable.

“It’s a dream come true,” Ben says. 

“And to sell out shows like our fan-club gig at Salford Lads Club in just an hour—it’s surreal.”

They’ve got a massive gig coming up at Manchester Ritz, which Joel and Ben were buzzing about. 

Joel said: “We’ve got an adopted home in Manchester now, which we love.

But yeah, as for the gig at the Ritz, that’s always been the main one for us. There’s a sort of headline I guess that we aspire to get to, and then yeah, as of now that it’s happening and it’s on its way to getting sold out, that’s just pretty crazy, to be honest, but exciting.”

Corella headlines the Manchester Ritz

Ben added: “It’s like a rite of passage that you’ve got to headline O2 Ritz before you do anything else.

“So we wanted to. We played at that venue a few times where we’ve supported bands like Cassia. So to go up and do that ourselves is pretty mad.

“We started from the bottom, but we did Night and Day Cafe and that sold out.

“And then we went to Gorilla, which also sold out. And then Academy 2, which sold out. 

“And now O2 Ritz is on its way to selling out as well. So we’ve made our way up, but it’s good, and it shows that we’re growing as artists because we’re getting a lot more people involved. Yeah, it’s pretty crazy that people are turning up and there’s a demand for the tickets, and it’s happening.

“It’s just a pretty crazy experience. But yeah, like I said, it just urges you to just get out there and smash it. It’s just pure excitement.”

Tickets to see Corella at 02 Ritz

You can get tickets to that gig by clicking here

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