Live at Leeds, taking place 1-4 May all over the city centre, is set to showcase a wealth of local and international talent. But with 200 acts spread out over 20 venues, there’s going to have to be some tough decisions made and some dashing between stages. Here are our must-sees for the festival to help you choose!
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Dry The River
This East-London band have recently released their second studio album Alarms In The Heart, and are well on their way to reaching the dizzy heights of their contemporaries Villagers and Ben Howard. Rapidly changing from acoustic lull to furious Mogwai-style post-rock, Peter Liddle’s live vocals alongside thrashy percussion will captivate. For those who predominantly enjoy swaying rather than jumping.
George the Poet
George Mpanga, otherwise known as George the Poet, is a 23-year-old spoken word poet/musician with a want to educate through music. With a degree in politics, psychology and sociology from Cambridge University, he focuses on issues of cultural and racial inequalities, and will no doubt leave his audience pondering life decisions far more taxing that Red Stripe or Carlsberg. For those who want a smart fusion of stimulated music.
Rough Trade Record’s moody Palma Violets will be a winner for those who are fans of the likes of Childhood, Swim Deep, Peace and Jagwar Ma. Their track Best of Friends was voted NME’s Track of the Year 2012, and although by no means new on the scene, this band is a definite for those who like rough and ready shoe gaze.
Psychedelic rock band Hookworms are similar to the likes of Tame Impala and Drenge, and will provide a well-needed break from the softer sounds of the festival. The band’s 2013 LP Pearl Mystic was Drowned in Sound’s number one album of that year, and made it into NME and The Guardian’s top rated records.
This all-female piece has the appeal of Haim with all the British authenticity of Lucy Rose and Laura Marling. A stunning array of voices accompany James Blake-inspired minimalist tracks, one of which – Heartbeats – has been remixed by Edwin Congreave of Foals fame. Also set to play Bestival this year, the band is new talent on the festival scene.