Its that time of year when festival announcements are thick and fast and your student loan is looking risky. To help you out we’ve given some of our stations the chance to talk about their favourite festival line-ups this year in the form of curated Spotify playlists. Norwich’s Livewire are looking North to the Leeds new music bonanza, Live At Leeds.
Check out their curated playlist of their favourite artists playing Live At Leeds below.
Wild Beasts are without a doubt going be a festival highlight. The Cumbrian quartet released their fifth album ‘Boy King’ last year, which added another album to their already strong back catalogue. Their songs range from the quiet and beautiful tones heard in ‘Simple Beautiful Truth’ to the raw and rugged vocals of ‘Tough Guy’ and ‘Hooting and Howling’. Having such a wide range of stunning songs their set will certainly be a spectacle worth witnessing.
It’s difficult to avoid the hype around the fastest selling male debut of the decade. Rory Graham, otherwise known by his stage moniker Rag‘n’Bone Man, sold 117,000 copies of his debut record ‘Human’ in its first week on-sale, blasting through sales figures achieved by Ed Sheeran and Sam Smith, to name a couple. After being longlisted for the BBC’s Sound Of 2017 list in January, and winning the Brits’ Critic’s Choice Award this year, it’s almost guaranteed that he is going to have a stellar year. Rag’n’Bone Man’s modern fusion of contemporary R&B, blues, and soul raises him above the crowd. The album carries palpable passion, and each bluesy beat pumps soulful blood into the deluxe version’s 19 tracks, immersing the listener into his world of originality. There’s something special about an artist who can create their own hybrid genre with their first full-length release, and if Rag’n’Bone Man has anything to prove, it’s that he is here to stay.
Yellow Days – Gap in the Clouds
‘Yellow Days’ is the musical project of 17-year-old George Van De Broek. ‘Gap in the Clouds’ demonstrates the talent of this young bedroom producer. The song starts with a hazy atmospheric passage, finished off with Van De Broek’s mature voice, which is reminiscent of soulful vocals that defined Motown. This is paired harmoniously with chilled drums and a woozy trip-hop-esque accompaniment. It won’t be long till this youngster is at the top of festival line-ups; definitely worth catching him at Live at Leeds while you have the chance.
IDLES – Stendhal Syndrome
So many bands seem to have their full name in capital letters, usually I find this completely unjustified. However, with Bristol post-punks IDLES this is far from the case. Their newest single ‘Stendhal Syndrome’ was premiered with a Madia Vale Studios session; if you watch this you’ll see band put so much energy into the raucous performance (possibly helped by the buckfast the lead singer was drinking). And that was just a session, their loud and dynamic set at Live at Leeds will be the most ferocious of them all – prepare to get shouted at.
Bullet Head – Fangclub
Rowdy is too simple of a description to slap on Dublin trio Fangclub. After being signed to Universal Records last year, the band have been drip-feeding us scuzzed up punky tunes with a bit of bite. Not bite in the sense that you could be kicked in the face in one of their moshpits, bite in the sense that they seem to be on a mission to reinstate ‘90s grunge as a staple contemporary scene. Two lead singles ‘Bullet Head’ and ‘Coma Happy’ announce the band’s arrival on the market; ‘Bullet Head’ features a riff so powerful it could be one of the year’s most stubborn earworms, and ‘Coma Happy’ carries an almost heady, sultry bass–frontman Steven King’s grimy yet lusty vocal finishes the song off with artful finesse. Certainly one to watch.
Between Each Brick – The Golden Age Of TV
Art-rock is seemingly enjoying a bit of an up recently, and brand-new Leeds quintet are riding on that high. With only one single under their belts, ‘Between Each Brick’, yet a thorough smattering of support from West Yorkshire BBC Introducing, they have managed to peek their heads through the curtains of mainstream success already. Debut ‘Between Each Brick’ is marked by a glittering sci-fi sheen over sweet guitar and frontwoman Bea’s surprisingly powerful voice, resulting in a song rather reminiscent of an elegantly wrapped gift. Self-described as “an eclectic mix of post-rock electronics, thrashy indie and future funk”, the band’s originality surely guarantees their success on the alternative scene this coming year.
Words: Erin Bashford & Aled-Vernon Rees