by Matthew Langham
So it’s nearly upon us – Leeds’ city-wide music festival returns for its 2015 edition on the first May bank holiday (1st-4th May), spread across 23 stages throughout the city. Let’s hope the weather’s nice!
In years gone by, Live At Leeds has hosted the likes of Disclosure, George Ezra, The Maccabees, Clean Bandit, Sam Smith, Royal Blood and Catfish & The Bottlemen before they broke it really big. If you play your cards right, you might be able to say at Christmas that you saw one of the biggest new artists of 2015 before they were big, and sound like a hipster.
You can download their app for the full schedule, but here’s our list of five bands we reckon you should catch throughout Saturday 2nd May!
(All times correct at time of writing)
Gaz Coombes – O2 Academy, 1:30pm
Best known as the frontman of ‘90s Britpop heroes Supergrass, who brought us ‘Alright’, ‘Pumping on Your Stereo’ and countless nuggets of sunny indie brilliance, Gaz Coombes’ second solo record Matador garnered huge critical acclaim and has sold steadily since its release back in January. Tracks including ‘Buffalo’ and ‘Detroit’ are moodier and more diverse than his past would suggest, but you can expect a couple of Supergrass tracks chucked into his set for good measure. It should be proof that Gaz Coombes is one of the most underrated and overlooked British songwriters of the last two decades. Get down to the Academy early for his afternoon set – it’s likely to be one of the most popular shows of the day.
Pinkshinyultrablast – Brudenell Social Club, 4pm
Hailing from St. Petersburg in Russia, five-piece Pinkshinyultrablast arrive in Leeds on the back of considerable airplay and promotion by BBC6 Music’s Marc Riley. Following the re-formation of Ride and Slowdive, the band perfectly fit into the shoegaze tag with a post-My Bloody Valentine take on noise pop. With hints of Stereolab’s well-curated record collection rock, Pinkshinyultrablast are our new favourite Russian band! Recommended for all fans of shoegaze, noise pop and good taste. Their debut record Everything Else Matters was released in January of this year.
Gengahr – Leeds Becket University, Dr. Martens Stage, 6:30pm
Gengahr are a four-piece from North London, formed in October 2013. Following a breakthrough year in 2014 and appearances including Glastonbury and Latitude, the band have put themselves on the viewing platform as one of the ‘ones to watch’ for this year’s festival scene. Lengthy tours across the UK have seen them support Wolf Alice, The Maccabees, Circa Waves and Jungle to name but a few. With their debut album A Dream Outside set for release in June, their summery indie tunes are essential viewing for fans of Tame Impala and Unknown Mortal Orchestra, but also generally for all those who love drinking in the sunshine.
Hookworms – Leeds Becket University, 7:30pm
Leeds’ very own Hookworms will be playing one of their most eagerly anticipated shows of 2015. Their blend of droning Krautrock-influenced psychedelia has seen the quintet gain a considerable legion of admirers from far and wide. The release of their debut record Pearl Mystic in 2013 was followed up by last year’s excellently received The Hum, both of which were included in our Top 50 Albums of their respective years. Recommended for fans of Spiritualized, Wooden Shjips and No Age.
Listen: ‘Radio Tokyo’
Spring King – Brudenell Social Club, 9pm
Known for their ferocious live shows, Manchester five-piece Spring King are having a tremendous 2015. Following the release of their second EP They’re Coming After You, they have gained plenty of radio airplay with their most popular track to date, ‘City’. Created by producer Tarek Musa, who has worked with the likes of Stealing Sheep, their garage-fuelled pop is set to attract a large crowd at the Brudenell. Though their Facebook page describes their genre as ‘Love Songs’, we recommend them to fans of Superfood and Honeyblood.
Tags: Gaz Coombes, Gengahr, Hookworms, LAL2015, Live At Leeds, Pinkshinyultrablast, preview, Spring King
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