Seventy Nine THOUSAND Steps.
Approx. 10 Hours Sleep.
Copious amounts of alcohol.
Non Stop Dancing.
Yep. That was Leeds Festival 2018.
Apologies for the small delay in this post. My body and brain have been recovering…
You’d have thought I’d be able to manage a festival or two by now, but as Leeds Festival always seems to mark the end of the Festival Season, you kind of have to go all out.
Party until your feet hurt, drink until you forget the rain.
After attending my very first Leeds Fest at the tender age of 18 (in 2003, wow), I did used to go the festival on and off whenever the headliners were good. After realising that I enjoyed the festival because it was more about the experience and the people, this year was 6th year in a row.
Before I went to Leeds 2018 I downloaded the app and marked the bands I wanted to see.
Turns out these festival apps are pretty good you know.
Mark your highlights and it sends you a reminder 15 minutes before the band is on, telling you which stage as well.
Forget the times of printing out clashfinder schedules and nicking someones line-up lanyard.
I managed to ear-mark a surprising amount of bands this year and I think I managed to tick off about 90% of them!
Which is rare for me as I’m usually either too hungover or lazy to see more than about five bands…
The best bands at Leeds Festival 2018
Of course, Death from Above 1979 were the best band of the weekend for me.
I saw them a few years ago (when I was standing stage side with Interpol, yes that is a humble brag) and they blew me away then.
But like a fine wine, they got better with age.
The drummer*slash*vocalist Sebastien Grainger, teamed with bassist Jesse F. Keeler makes this duo the coolest act you’re likely to see live.
It kind of narks me when you describe them and people say ‘Oh, like Royal Blood’ because this pair make Royal Blood look like tiny baby rip offs.
The energy, the music, the interaction. They tick every box.
I’m sure fans were a little bit disappointed when they didn’t perform the classic Romantic Rights, but hey, we got their new stuff. Which makes you want to just dance.
Like, a proper poppin’ shoulder, boogie dance too.
In contrast to DFA1979 at Leeds Festival, I managed to get there early enough on the Friday to catch Let’s Eat Grandma.
I’ve been listening to these guys on repeat since I discovered them the other month. They make for great background music when you’re cracking on with some work on the computer too.
Once again, a duo make up the band. Two 19 year old girls who are by far the most musically gifted and professional girls I’ve ever seen.
Even when the keyboard fell off the stand, they kept playing it. On the floor. Without even breaking the song.
If you like bands like M83 and Lorde you’ll most likely like Let’s Eat Grandma.
A band that wasn’t on my list that I managed to catch the end of were HMLTD
As soon as I caught the Jonny Rotten-esque vocals I knew I had to check them out at soon as I got home.
It’s like Mindless Self Indulgence meets Public Image Limited and got remixed by Adam Ant.
And speaking of remixes, Soft Cell have already done a bangin’ remix of their song Proxy Love.
I know the above might be a foreign language to come people, but if you haven’t heard of those bands, then just know that they’re high-energy 80s style bangers that will make you dance.
Another new artist to wrap your ears around is Stoke LAD, Dylan Cartlidge.
Who actually signed his very first record deal today and has already done a song with Jamie T.
He’s going to be huge. You can see his video to Scratch Sniff on my previous blog post here.
During his set on the BBC Introducing Stage, everything seemed against him. Well, when I say everything I actually mean the weather.
By this point on Sunday the constant rain was draining, alongside the hangover, but we still managed to see him.
It’s amazing how a lad with a guitar can provide such stage presence and even do an impromptu rap between instrument changes.
Other highlights of Leeds Festival 2018 were the usual.
When I say that I mean the Piccadilly Party, of course.
Based over on the campsites, this is where you need to go if you like dancing until 6am every night.
With a mix of music, the party is always a good idea when you’re tanked up on Spiced Rum and want to make the most of your time after the bands have finished.
But if that’s not what you’re after, then make sure you camp as far away as possible, as thousands of people will be partying non-stop, I assure you.
Another honorable mention is for the Co-Op pop up supermarket which has started to frequent a lot of festivals this summer.
No longer are people being ripped off with expensive deep fried food! Hurrah!
You can get meal deals, top up on tinnies and get all your essentials for around the same price as it costs in a regular Co-Op.
This also means that you can hold off on lugging the heavy bags of food from your car to the campsite at the start of the weekend, as you can just buy it there!
How good is that?!
And I can’t finish this blog post without mentioning the surprise set from Bring Me The Horizon.
I actually called this on Twitter a few days before, as I noticed there was a gap in the schedule alongside the release of their new single that week.
I’ve seen them before at Alexandria Palace and despite not being their biggest fan at that point, they really did win me over.
Love them or hate them, when you see them on tour they blow the audience away with the setlist and the overall performance.
Leeds Festival was a little lack lustre I felt though. Maybe it’s just because I’m not a massive, massive fan so need that extra oomph when I see them play.
But either way, the tent packed full of fans loved it.