Where could anyone possibly start to describe this event? Four days in total (with the pre and post event stuff), across ten venues throughout Leeds. All the ingredients for one of the most exciting events I think I have been to in a long time.
With bands such as The Subways, Hawkeyes, Blacklisters and Black Moth, it was pretty much a struggle to decide where the hell to go, so many awesome bands clashing. Well to be honest I didn’t fancy tear-arsing through the centre of Leeds all day and night. So.. leaving Iain to go check out happenings at the Uni and the Academy I got myself along to The Well on Chorley Lane. Now this place kind of has special sentiment for me, I used to rehearse with my band in this venue on a Sunday. It was good to hear that it was re-opening for Live At Leeds.
The Well seemed to be pretty much under constant threat of closure for years, and eventually it actually happened – one of the biggest losses to the live music scene in Leeds, but it was good to see the Colgan Machine reinventing the venue, with a passion for kick arse events.
They got this one perfect.
I got there in time to see the Post War Glamour Girls. REALLY not my thing but, you know, the crowd was going nuts so it was hard to be too dismissive. Performance wise, you just couldn’t go wrong. The crowd certainly loved them and they good a really good vibe going tthat pretty much set the rest of the day up for the win.
Royal Republic were the same, building on the vibe that PWGG had built in the capacity crowd and belting certainly out an impressive performance, but still…. they didn’t do anything to blow me away, but hey – they are good at what they do.
The great thing about festivals like this is the little extras that you discover that kind of make the day. Well the acoustic set that singer songwriter Georgette Hilton and guitarist Ainsley Prothero put on while the bands were changing over downstairs was one of those.
Next up was Hawkeyes. Fresh from releasing their album ‘Ideas’, and playing up and down the UK, they were ready for this. Brutal, hard – fucking thrilling and a kind of relief after the other bands. These guys were right up my street, and you know what? You should REALLY check these guys out. Here’s a link…. http://www.hawkeyesmusic.com/ – get their stuff and you will be impressed. Guitar driven, anthemic, the kind of music to make you have a little sex wee about.
Then, came the mighty Turbowolf. I’ve seen these guys play before at The Cockpit, and semi knew what to expect. Psychedelia, moustaches, hair, awesome riffs, and awesome enthusiasm. Alas, I have a slight confession. By the time Turbowolf got on, I’d had a most excellent and brutal time already, and was kind of really itching to get in to the pit. I got knocked on my ass almost immediately, and the next thing I know, I’m being tossed on stage. EPIC TIMES. I’d popped my crowd surfing cherry to one of the coolest bands going. These guys were, are, immense. You need to hear there stuff AND, if you’re off to Download, go check them out.
And because I love these guys so damn much, here’s another link. http://www.facebook.com/turbowolf
Blacklisters were up – I was kind of looking forward to this band. I’d received a CD from the boys at Brew Records and was really impressed, so I wanted to make sure I was around to catch their set. Well, as good as their debut album BLCKLSTRS is, I have to be honest they were good, not great. The vocalist was, well let’s say he seemed to be slightly hammered, and I couldn’t understand a word he was saying between tracks or anything. That’s not to say it was a bad performance, and certainly everyone else was pretty much up for them, I just kinda expected more.
The rest of the guys, YES, they were as awesome as I expected them to be.
Then came my epic fail and the end to LAL2012 – the decision to leave the £2 Red Stripe promotion and warmth of The Well behind, and get my ass to see Reverend and the Makers in the Faversham.
Epic Fail. The queue was a mile long, it was freezing cold, and there was no way on earth I was going to catch any of the set. Bugger. Time for a Balti King then, eh?