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Festival Focus #9: Leeds Festival

  • Published in Reviews
leeds festival 2015
Photography by Vincent Gallagher 

In little over a week the thousands will descend upon Bramham Park for a long weekend filled with tent poles, luke warm beers, instant noodles and, most importantly, 4 days of live music.

For all those dedicated festival goers the Leeds weekend will start proceedings with the return of the ‘Welcome To Leeds’ stage, presented by Leeds Label, Dance To The Radio. Returning punters will be glad to know that local lads Pulled Apart By Horses will be headlining after having to drop out of the line up last minute in 2014. The Yorkshire contingent will be out in their forces with Carnabells and RedFaces also gracing the stage. Definitely a reason to get yourself on site early doors.

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If the Welcome To Leeds stage whets your appetite for up and coming musical talent then the rest of the weekend wont disappoint. Head over to the BBC Introducing Stage to catch The Jacques, The Amazons, Georgia, Clean Cut Kid, White, The Big Moon, Hidden Charms and Leeds’ own Skinner (to name but a few). Notorious for showcasing huge talent the BBC Introducing Stage is the place to find yourself if you enjoy telling your friends you saw all the headliners before they were big.

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On the more established stages we’re greeted by a plethora of big names and breakthrough artists. What draws the appeal of Leeds & Reading to the masses is the contrast in artists and genres across the stages. The 1Xtra stage sees sets from Isaiah Dreads, Ms Dynamite, Lethal Bizzle and Azealia Banks. Whilst the Festival Republic Stage is letting it’s hair down with Little Comets, Frank Turner, Eliza And The Bear, Ash and The Wombats. Hop over to the Lock Up Stage/The Pit for something slightly heavier with Queen Kwong, Cancer Bats, The Bots, Modern Life Is War and Atreyu. If you’re feeling the need to get your dance on then look no further than the BBC Radio 1 Dance Stage for Maribou State, Boy Better Know, Hayden James, Hannah Wants, Elliphant and Tourist.

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Although the NME/Radio 1 Stage and the Main Stage can be often sniffed at by music snobs, they’re the place to be for anyone over 25 suffering from a case of ‘Moshtalgia’ (myself included). Between Limp Bizkit, Against Me!, Panic! At The Disco and Metallica you can indulge in your annual dose of ‘rock that got you through your teenage years’. Also high on my list over the NME/Radio 1 stage are Ghostpoet, Years & Years, Don Broco, Peace, Slaves and Catfish And The Bottlemen.

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The mighty Main Stage is playing host to the 2nd Libertines reunion and whilst we’re all breathing a sigh of relief over that new album it’s also worth checking out old schoolers The Cribs, grunge inspired lads Drenge and leather cladded rockers, Royal Blood.

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If that lot doesn’t quite quench your thirst for partying, then look no further than the Relentless Stage where a host of DJ’s such as Luke Hassan, DJ EZ, Oneman and DJ sets from electronic rock band Modestep carry on the festivities. Hidden in the trees between Red and Orange camping this party keeps the festival vibes going until 3am every night.

So strap your wellies and your waterproofs firmly on, with a sunhat and glasses tucked in your back pocket and make the most of a music packed weekend.

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