I am super psyched to be heading back to Live At Leeds this year on the 4th May. With 200+ acts across twenty-one different venues all for just £38 (plus fees) it really is a bargain. Get your tickets here.
In this preview I will be highlighting some acts which I think are definitely worth checking out and believe me if I could possibly write about every single act I would. There really is some brilliant talent going to be on show this year and in my opinion it is the best line-up yet.
What is Live At Leeds?
Live At Leeds is a one day music festival across venues in Leeds City Centre. It has been showcasing the best new talent from not just the UK but also acts coming from overseas since 2007. It is an incredibly chilled out day with wristband holders being able to come and go as they please letting people explore the brilliant city whilst enjoying some awesome music.
With the wristband (collected on the day) you are free to go into whichever venue you like with the only restriction being capacity. But you are never far away from another venue with another artist performing.
Last year I discovered some awesome talent such as IDLES and The XCERTS so I am looking forward to finishing the day with some new artists on my playlist.
Artists To Watch
Ferris & Sylvester
Playing The Wardrobe Bar at 12:45 is alternative country duo Ferris & Sylvester. They are a pair who are putting their own stamp on the folk/country scene having recently finished their first headline tour but also having supported the likes of George Ezra and James Blunt. I had the pleasure of seeing them live on their tour and I was completely blown away by their musical talent and stage presence. Their latest single, “Sickness” really highlights the vocal prowess of the pair as it captures the rawness of human relationships.
Playing The Social at 16:00 is the very talented Pip Hall. The teenager has brilliant vocals and has written beautiful – yet perhaps slightly dark – pop tracks which shows the outside world what it is like being a teenager and in love. Something that I can still remember from my teenage years. Her track, “Ill at Ease” really stands out to me with the layered tracks and haunting harmonies.
One of the biggest bands on the bill and playing the O2 Academy at 19:15 is The Sherlocks. It doesn’t feel that long ago that they took the UK charts by storm when releasing their debut album and they are now on course to release their second. The indie-rock band made quite the impression when playing Glastonbury in 2017 on a certain rock n roll star leading to a support slot with Liam Gallagher. You will not be disappointed by this band, my favourite song of theirs is “Will You Be There?” and it has been on my playlist ever since it’s release years ago.
Brand New Friend
Playing The Key Club at 13:00 is the brilliantly exciting, indie-pop band Brand New Friend. The four-piece radiate awesome energy and have multi-layered tunes with some classic indie hooks. What I love about this band is how they have both male and female vocals – it just gives them something additional. Their debut album “Seatbelts For Aeroplanes” is definitely worth checking out.
Sophie and the Giants
Playing probably one of the most important stages is the fresh pop band, Sophie and the Giants. They are playing the “BBC Introducing Stage” at Oporto at 15:00. They have this raw sound and honest vocals to go with that. If you like Florence and the Machine I am sure you will enjoy this quartet. Their single, “Waste My Air” really shows off their musical capabilities – they are definitely a group with a future.
A band who I am very excited to finally see live is Sea Girls. The indie-pop band have recently finished an insane sold out UK tour which saw them playing to excited fans every night. I sadly missed out on a ticket. The love people have for them show to me that they are pretty special. Their debut single, “Call Me Out” is full of ace guitar riffs and brilliant vocals – a song which I am looking forward to hear them play. They are playing the “Farah Stage”, Leeds University Union Refectory at 16:45.
With the rhythm of indie heroes and multi-instrumentalist talent, duo APRE should be an artist you should check out at 20:00 at Nation of Shopkeepers. The double act combine a range of genres creating an electronic alt-pop sound which I think is very appealing. They debut single, “All Yours” has sweet riffs and a cool synth sound really showing their music capabilities.
Playing the “Momentum & Independent Stage” at Leeds Becket SU at 15:30 is all-female punk trio Dream Wife. Their sound is very guitar heavy and they are able to produce these rocking performances. Upbeat but with definite undertones of rage you would be gutted to miss them out of your day’s plans. Single, “Hey Heartbreaker” is full to the brim of indie-punk lines with an energetic chorus.
Sad Boys Club
Emerging from the world of indie-pop is ambitious quintet Sad Boys Club. Their music is not only upbeat and full of pop melodies but emotional lyrics giving it a great balance. I would say they carry similar vibes to The 1975 but they are in themselves very individual. I have heard brilliant things about their live shows and look to catch them at 20:00 at The Lending Room.
Buzzard Buzzard Buzzard
For fans of The Orielles who played the festival last year, rock band Buzzard Buzzard Buzzard are helping keep guitar music alive but with a different perspective. Featuring on The Guardian’s picks for 2019 the Cardiff band have a lot to prove and are currently doing with ease. Rocking the double denim look it is only right their first single is called “Double Denim Hop”. They play the “GigWise Stage” at Leeds Beckett SU at 14:00.
Local band, Team Picture, are taking over the “Yorkshire Music Forum Stage”, Hifi at 20:30. They are a six-piece alternative rock outfit from Leeds who played one of their first festivals at LAL in 2017. Since then, they’ve released numerous material including single “Bedroom Genius” which carries a bold bass line which is repeated throughout the song with overlapping vocals over the top. Just listening to it I can imagine being in a venue stinking of booze having a great time.
Playing the “Dr Martens Second Stage” at the Brudenell Community Room, 18:30 is the Danish alt-pop band. Lowly are a quartet with eclectic synths and engineered melodies giving them this very individual sound. Their debut album “Heba” received great praise after its release in 2017 and shows a different method of thinking when it comes to pop. With electronic tempos and isolated vocals this is a band you shouldn’t miss.
There are twenty-one awesome venues of all different types and sizes which are a part of the festival. You can check them all out on an easy map here and read about them below including which acts are playing them.
Brudenell Social Club
Probably the most regarded music venue in all of Leeds and has been for an entire century, this 400-people capacity venue is home of the “Dr Martens Boot Room” stage on the 4th May. For twelve straight hours it will be in business playing home to twelve brilliant artists.
12:00-12:30 Tallsaint | 13:00-13:30 Childcare | 14:00-14:30 Ed The Dog | 15:00-15:30 The Jungle Giants | 16:00-16:30 Benin City | 17:00-17:30 altopalo | 18:00-18:30 Chappaqua Wrestling | 19:00-19:30 Fur | 20:00-20:30 Another Sky | 21:00-21:30 The Murder Capital | 22:00-22:45 Indoor Pets | 11:15-00:00 Easy Life
Brudenell Community Room
This is the smaller, second concert room at the Social Club which opened in 2017. Eleven acts are going to be gracing the “Dr Martens Second Stage” for the festival making the entire building the place to be during the festival. I can guarantee one hell of a buzz.
12:30-13:00 HalfNoise | 13:30-14:00 Honey Harper | 14:30-15:00 Rachel Chinouriri | 15:30-16:00 Swimming Tapes | 16:30-17:00 WOOZE | 17:30-18:00 Bailen | 18:30-19:00 Lowly | 19:30-20:00 Walt Disco | 20:30-21:00 Gently Tender | 21:30-22:00 KAWALA | 22:30-23:15 Mini Mansions
One of my favourite venues in Leeds is this underground gig venue. Fitting around 450 people this venue is home of the “Dork Stage” showcasing ten mega acts all of who this time next year could be playing the bigger venues. BRIT nominated band IDLES played this venue last year and they haven’t looked back since.
12:00-12:45 VANT | 13:15-13:45 The Hubbards | 14:15:14:45 BLOXX | 15:15-15:45 No Hot Ashes | 16:15-16:45 The Lottery Winners | 17:15-17:45 SPINN | 18:15-18:45 RedFaces | 19:15-19:45 Sports Team | 20:15-21:00 The Snuts | 21:30-22:30 Swim Deep
The Wardrobe Bar
Upstairs above the renowned underground gig venue is this wonderful bar with a small playing space. Last year I found there to be a light, positive atmosphere perfect for the ten acts chosen to play here including the frontman of Leeds rockers The Pigeon Detectives.
12:45-13:15 Ferris & Sylvester | 13:45-14:15 AK Patterson | 14:45-15:15 Sinead Campbell | 15:45-16:15 Jake Germain | 16:45-17:15 shey baba | 17:45-18:15 ADMT | 18:45-19:15 JEFFE | 19:45-20:15 John Buckley | 21:00-21:30 Matt Bowman
Leeds University Union
Music media giants NME have created the “NME Stage” at this venue. Being one of two venues the university have rented out to the festival there is sure to be a decent feeling surrounding the area. This is the bigger of the two stages on the day and is exhibiting some great talent including headliners Metronomy.
16:00-16:45 Skinny Living | 17:30-18:00 C Duncan | 18:30-19:15 She Drew The Gun | 19:45-20:30 Goat Girl | 21:00-21:45 Confidence Man | 22:30-23:45 Metronomy
Leeds University Union Refectory
The “Farah Stage” at Leeds University may be the smaller of the two on the day but the talent is still incredible. With headliner Tom Grennan showing off his flair towards the end of the night but indie-pop band Sea Girls kicking things off. This venue holds some fantastic history where not only David Bowie had previously played but also it is where The Who‘s Live At Leeds was recorded.
16:45-17:30 Sea Girls | 18:00-18:30 whenyoung | 19:00-19:45 The Academic | 20:15-21:15 Black Honey | 21:45-23:15 Tom Grennan
Known on the day as the “Leeds Festival Presents Stage” this is the biggest venue involved with a capacity of 2,300. A venue of this size has to showcase some major talent and it really is with sets from indie-rock band Sundara Karma, grunge-rock duo Drenge, local indie-pop band Marsicans, indie rockers The Sherlocks and 2019 BRITs Critics Choice Award winner Sam Fender.
15:15-16:15 Drenge | 16:45-17:30 Marsicans | 18:00-18:45 Sam Fender | 19:15-20:15 The Sherlocks | 21:30-22:30 Sundara Karma
Belgrave Music Hall
This venue is quite individual with not only the music venue but also a canteen downstairs where they host street food events. I am not sure what the set-up is going to be on the 4th May when it comes to food but I know you will be able to catch eleven different acts there including singer-songwriter Lauren Aquilina.
12:00-12:30 Hello Cosmos | 13:00-13:30 Dan D’Lion | 14:00-14:30 UPSAHL | 15:00-15:30 Oli Fox | 16:00-16:30 Jesse Jo Stark | 17:00-17:30 Millie Turner | 18:00-18:30 Jvck James | 19:00-19:30 kwassa | 20:00-20:30 Elli Ingram | 21:00-21:30 Orla Gartland | 22:00-23:00 Lauren Aquilina
The sister venue to the Belgrave has only been open since 2015 but has already accommodated some awesome artists. During the festival it is going to be very busy with twelve artists performing there! It really is a brilliant venue and it is the perfect place if you fancy a drink or two on a rooftop terrace.
12:00-12:30 Barny Fletcher | 13:00-13:30 Deliah Montagu | 14:00-14:30 Tertia May | 15:00-15:30 Aeris Roves | 16:00-16:30 BRUNSWICK | 17:00-17:30 Mae Muller | 18:00-18:30 Le Boom | 19:00-19:30 MAX RAD | 20:00-20:30 Kojaque | 21:00-21:30 404 | 22:00-22:30 Big Wild | 23:00-23:45 Everyone You Know
Home of this year’s “BBC Introducing Stage” is this charming, 120-person capacity venue in the heart of the city. Possibly the most important stage of the day as in my personal experience BBC Introducing have been a key source of me discovering new artists in recent times.
12:00-12:30 La Rissa | 13:00-13:30 Cruel World | 14:00-14:30 Household Dogs | 15:00-15:30 Sophie and the Giants | 16:00-16:30 Thyla | 17:00-17:30 Pizzagirl | 18:00-18:30 Lauran Hibberd | 19:00-19:30 Far Caspian | 20:00-20:30 Zuzu
The Key Club
After the closure of Leeds’ legendary venue, Cockpit, somewhere needed to take the reigns to put on gigs for the rock and punk fans everywhere. The 300 capacity venue is the location for some next level talent on the 4th May including punk heavyweights Heavy Lungs and then a currently unknown special guest rounding off the night.
12:00-12:30 Sunshine Frisbee Laserbeam | 13:00-13:30 Brand New Friend | 14:00-14:30 Saint Agnes | 15:00-15:30 Dboy | 16:00-16:30 Spielbergs | 17:00-17:30 Hot Milk | 18:00-18:30 Death By Unga Bunga | 19:00-19:30 LICE | 20:00-20:45 Heavy Lungs | 21:15-22:00 SPECIAL GUEST
Leeds Beckett SU (Stage One)
The first of two stages at Leeds Beckett is the “GigWise Stage” with a real mix of artists it is expected to be bustling throughout the day. There is going to be rock, punk, indie and even some soulful pop being performed on this stage so there should be something for everyone.
12:00-12:30 Curb | 13:00-13:30 Horror My Friend | 14:00-14:30 Buzzard Buzzard Buzzard | 15:00-15:30 Wovoka Gentle | 16:15-16:45 Saltwater Sun | 17:15-17:45 Heavy Rapids | 18:15-18:45 Be Charlotte | 19:30-20:00 LION | 20:45-21:30 Lady Bird
Leeds Beckett SU (Stage 2)
The second of the two stages at Leeds Beckett is the “Momentum and Independent Stage”. There are some names that I certainly recognise playing this stage including award winning Kate Tempest. All acts performing this stage are very different and add an interesting mix of sound to the festival.
15:00-16:15 Dream Wife | 16:45-17:15 Gengahr | 17:45-18:15 Hak Baker | 18:45-19:30 Elder Island | 20:00-20:45 Ibibio Sound Machine | 21:30-22:45 Kate Tempest
This club with 350 capacity used to be the home of the club night PIGS created by a few members of the Kaiser Chiefs way back when but for Live At Leeds it is the home of the “Yorkshire Music Forum Stage”. All acts performing on this stage (apart from one) are from the area making it the perfect place to watch some local talent.
12:30-13:00 The Paper Waits | 13:30-14:00 Tall Talker | 14:30-15:00 Sea Legs | 15:30-16:00 Talkboy | 16:30-17:00 Dead Naked Hippies | 17:30-18:00 ørmstons | 18:30-19:00 Faux Pas | 19:30-20:00 The Golden Age of TV | 20:30-21:00 Team Picture | 21:30-22:15 Menace Beach
Nation of Shopkeepers
This is another venue known for showing off new talent. Nine fresh acts are gracing this venue including multi-instrumentalists APRE. This venue is a very popular bar and is expected to be very busy on the 4th May.
12:00-12:30 Tamzene | 13:00-13:30 Eve Belle | 14:00-14:30 Bessie Turner | 15:00-15:30 Sam Tompkins | 16:00-16:30 James Gillespie | 17:00-17:30 RuthAnne | 18:00-18:30 Malena Zavala | 19:00-19:30 Balcony | 20:00-20:45 APRE
I think this is the prettiest venue in Leeds. A renovated old church is where the “Dance to the Radio Stage” will be located during the festival. The acts will be performing in front of a stunning stained glass window to a large crowd of near two thousand. There is a mezzanine and seating down the sides. The brilliant The Slow Readers Club are playing this venue.
15:15-16:00 Cavetown | 16:30-17:00 Shadowlark | 17:30-18:00 The Mysterines | 18:30-19:00 Cassia | 19:30-20:15 Fatherson | 20:45-21:30 Seafret | 22:00-23:00 The Slow Readers Club
In 2017, this second room at Church opened and it really is a beautiful site. With 17th century, Gothic architecture this intimate venue is home to a range of acts on the 4th May.
12:00-12:30 Tranqua Lite | 13:00-13:30 Dancing On Tables | 14:00-14:30 The Collier | 15:00-15:30 Patawawa | 16:00-16:30 Inhaler | 17:00-17:30 Swimming Girls | 18:00-18:30 Retro Video Club | 19:00-19:30 Declan Welsh and The Decadent West | 20:15-20:45 The Dunts | 21:30-22:00 Fuzzy Sun
Hyde Park Book Club
Hyde Park Book Club is at the heart of Leeds’ creative arts scene and has achieved its vision in becoming an events-led, pan-arts creative hub. It is housed in a disused petrol station and it really is a charming spot perfect for the eleven acts performing here.
12:00-12:30 In Your Prime | 13:00-13:30 The Pearl Harts | 14:00-14:30 These New South Whales | 15:00-15:30 Kingswood | 16:00-16:30 VC Pines | 17:00-17:30 Wasuremono | 18:00-18:30 Body Type | 19:00-19:30 Hotel Lux | 20:00-20:30 Squid | 21:00-21:30 Average Joe | 22:00-22:30 Bilk
Northern Guitars Cafe Bar
This delightful, little venue has a guitar shop situated upstairs giving any musicians chance to browse their affordable wares between sets of the nine wonderful acts performing.
12:30-13:00 Mollie Coddled | 13:30-14:00 Trueman | 14:30-15:00 Luckie | 15:30-16:00 Aaron Smith | 16:30-17:00 Tom Joshua | 17:30-18:00 Liz Lawrence | 18:30-19:00 Tamu Massif | 19:30-20:00 Katie Pruitt | 20:30-21:00 Ruston Kelly
The Lending Room
This venue at The Library has a rich history but right now it is a brilliant venue catering to all different music types and genres. On the 4th May, eleven very different acts will be playing this venue.
12:00-12:30 Teeff | 13:00-13:30 Ivory Wave | 14:00-14:30 Alex Francis | 15:00-15:30 SUN SILVA | 16:00-16:30 Big Society | 17:00-17:30 The Skinner Brothers | 18:00-18:30 ALLIGATOR | 19:00-19:30 Wild Youth | 20:00-20:30 Sad Boys Club | 21:00-21:30 Giant Rooks | 22:00-22:45 Larkins
A place to chill and relax, The Social is where nine acts will be playing during the festival. It captures the ethos of Brudenell Social Club but with a much calmer and perhaps quiet atmosphere. Has some good grub too.
12:30-13:00 Green Gardens | 13:30-14:00 Sam Wilde | 14:30-15:00 Lucas Watt | 15:30-16:00 Odina | 16:30-17:00 Pip Hall | 17:30-18:00 Luvia | 18:30-19:00 beabadoobee | 19:30-20:00 Archie Faulks
Live At Leeds is on Saturday 4th May 2019 and promises to be a brilliant day. Tickets can be bought online (link below) to be swapped with a wristband on the day. They have a very helpful app which you can download on iOS and Android devices, just search “Live At Leeds” in the app store. Here you can read up on all the artists involved and plan your day.
All links just below. Hopefully see you there!
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