WITH less than a month to go until the gates open on Leeds Festival, the countdown is on.
This year's main stage headliner is Jake Bugg, who made a previous appearance as a rising star on the festival's BBC Introducing Stage. The stage returns this year, as the one stop home showcasing up-and-coming talent.
Topping the bill on the Saturday will be exciting new BBC Radio 1 and BBC Radio 1Xtra championed soul singer Moko, and hoining her will be alternative punk project The Bulletproof Bomb, Kent experimental rock group Broken Hands, the ambient neo-soul singing collective Lyves, 19-year-old folk-pop singer Rebecca Clements, the blues tinged and Tom Waits influenced sounds of John J Presley, the fiercely executed rap and emotive, catchy vocal melodies of Judge and The Jury, melancholic indie quintet Dancing Years, singer/songwriter Natasha North and fierce Scottish post hardcore band Shambles In A Husk.
Heading up the line-up on Sunday is the delicate vocal of Bombay Bicycle Club collaborator Rae Morris. Hotly tipped slacker rock trio Happyness will join her alongside York band Hello Operator, ex-General Fiasco brothers Owen and Enda Strathern’s new band Oh Volcano, three-piece Leicester music-makers Juniors, upcoming songwriter and Enigma Dubz collaborator Lippi, the melodious pop of Liverpool trio All We Are, French, Aussie and Brit four-piece indie rockers Sunset Sons and the horror-influenced skate-punk of Cambridge four-piece, Bloody Knees.
Friday at Leeds sees the stage headlined by Scottish synth-pop trio and Island signees Prides who will come to the festival fresh from playing the Blink 182 Reading & Leeds warm-up shows at Brixton Academy. Joining them are unsigned indie rock band Crystal Seagulls, promising and ever hard working singer-songwriter Adam French, the live spectacle of Swansea based Cramps-esque punkers Heavy Petting Zoo, fiercely talented alternative songwriter Jack Garratt, Manchester’s Man Made, Hull-based garage/punk band Mother, the BBC Radio 1Xtra playlisted talent of Esco Williams, the hauntingly beautiful music of Billie Marten and the raw.
This year sees the return of the prestigious Futuresound Competition, offering the winner the chance to perform on the Festival Republic Stage and five runners up the chance to open over on the BBC Introducing Stage. Leeds’ piano bashing, rock ‘n’ roll five piece Carnabells came in on top for what is sure to be the opportunity of a lifetime over on the Festival Republic Stage.
The line-up also includes self-proclaimed ‘Black Keys meets Nancy Sinatra’ trio Crybabycry, the post punk and pop of Tabloids, Forever Cult’s slow burning grunge, West Yorkshire alternative five piece Allusondrugs and the Leeds-based Vendettas.
Centre Stage 2014 winners GirlsOnDrugs have also been added to the bill. The boy/girl collaboration have deep bass synths and dream-laced chords enlivened by the beautiful, sultry, vocal talents of Kat McHugh.
Jason Carter, head of live music and events, BBC Popular Music says: “BBC Introducing are delighted to be bringing our stage to the Festival for another year. Over the past few years it has been fantastic to see bands that have been completely unknown move up the stage at the Festival, right up to the main stage, this is another phenomenal new band line-up."
* For tickets visit leedsfestival.com