Planning a day full of music with more than 100 artists and bands to choose from can be a daunting task (though probably not quite as stressful as organising all 11 venues for over 12 hours). Happily, not being overly familiar with most of the line-up, we were forsaken the woe that is deciding between two clashing bands were able to take a relaxed jaunt round the city centre.
Not ones for incurring undue urgency here at TQS Magazine, we began the day at Birds Yard, not for music but for a pot of tea, slice of cake and a few rounds of Mastermind (no, not Magnus Magnusson – just coloured pegs). What has this to do with Live at Leeds? Well, firstly, The Marvellous Tearoom was giving discounts to those with wristbands, but secondly, and of far greater magnitude, was the need for sustenance to propel us through the crowds flocking outside Ellen and the Escapades. Our first gig of the day was definitely worthy of the audience they attracted, with pretty melodies, strong vocals and probably the most unified group we saw all day. The echo-ey acoustics threatened to be problematic but the band adapted to them magnificently and the crowd responded in kind.
From there we took a leap across town to the Brudenell (it seemed to make sense at the time, ok?) to see two bands, Fossil Collective and The Night. Still early, it was pretty clear that the Brudenell was more of an evening venue: not so much for the quality of music but for the mere scattering of an audience. Not even the harp on stage during The Night’s set could pull a decent crowd and it was clear that the band was losing as much interest as the audience, a shame really as their Fleetwood Mac sound was a real winner for me.
We’ve been told by many that leaving the Brudenell before Kyla La Grange was a mistake, but c’est la vie and we had itchy feet for a new venue. So instead we ended up in Nation of Shopkeepers to hear the “red-hot rock and roll” of New Yorker Devin. We were fairly hazy on what that meant but he turned out to be cheeky, raucous and very entertaining. Never before have we loved skinny jeans and a tweed jacket so much.
From there we took a pit-stop (euphemism for Burger King) before heading down to Cockpit for The Subways. I had a hazy memory of hearing their name in my previous life as a student but it turned out I didn’t recognize a single song. Neither was I a huge fan of the moshpit. Still, the band had an incredible rapport with their fans which created infectious good spirits. A healthy dose of jumping, screaming and crowd-surfing led to a flushed, sweaty and yet satisfied exit.
All that remained was a trying march down to The Wardrobe to round off the night with Scroobius Pip. Though we could barely stand by the time we reached the venue, we soldiered on determined, and it definitely wasn’t a trying experience to watch such a fun act. Within seconds we were back on our feet and within a song were jumping around like crazy along with the rest of the audience. Witty lyrics, great energy and charming stage presence really fuelled the exuberant crowd and made for a really pleasing end to the night. Top cap it all, Scroobius’s tipple of choice was rosé wine. Straight from the bottle. What a geezer!