The award-winning Live at Leeds festival 2017 is just around the corner, kicking off Summer’s huge festival season. After previously hosting the very best in new talent which saw Ed Sheeran play in front of a 100-person crowd at Leeds’ Cockpit 5 years ago, and Sam Smith play in the Holy Trinity Church just three years ago, the festival was the first place to see Mumford & Sons, Clean Bandit, Bastille, the 1975 and Rudimental in Leeds before they all went on to become the dons of UK music: So, who are the ones to watch this year? Who will be the next “must see” band? This is not an easy question to answer because the 2017 festival is the biggest Live At Leeds yet. So big indeed that they’ve added an opening and closing ceremony – a bit like the Olympics but with better music. Literally! Apart from the headliners such as Maximo Park, Cloud Nothings, Rag ‘N’ Bone Man and Slaves there are three new artists that deserve to be checked out

After spending the last couple of years in their studio exploring sounds and working on new music, SUPERFOOD return with the infectious Double Dutch, their first new material since 2014.

Having pressed reset on the band, SUPERFOOD will start their new incarnation with Dirty Hit Records. Their yet untitled second album will be released later this year and is born out of a new-found freedom, enabling them to take their music to completely new and exciting places. Free from outside influences, the self-produced record bursts with light but the album’s creation wasn’t without its problems. “We had no money, no label and we wanted to give up several times,” says front man Dom Ganderton. The band emerged through the struggles with a record that serves as a document to perseverance, while putting to bed any notion of a difficult second record.

Southampton-raised, 22-year-old London-based singer, songwriter and producer Laurel Arnell-Cullen has been busy this year, whether that be releasing her PARK EP, or signing to iconic English independent label Counter Records (an imprint of Ninja Tune), releasing the tracks ‘Life Worth Living’ and ‘San Francisco’ on her own Theia label or heading out on her first headline tour.

Critical acclaim has appeared from numerous blogs, becoming a mainstay on the hype machine chat in 2016 and picking up support from the likes of Radio 1, 6 music, Radio X, Beats 1, Spotify and awarded Apple Music’s very first New Artist of the Week.

Liverpool’s thrilling fuzz-pop quartet Clean Cut Kid have announced details of their much-anticipated debut album. A string of exhilarating singles has given snapshots of their brilliance and now comes a record to match. ‘Felt’ will be released on April 28th through Babe Magnet Records/Polydor and is available for pre-order now. It will be preceded by a new single, ‘Leaving You Behind’, which has already received a Hottest Record accolade.

Clean Cut Kid are Mike Halls, Evelyn Halls, Saul Godman and Ross Higginson. The four-piece are one of the most exciting breakthrough bands in the UK, their inventive take on anthemic guitar-pop the product of intense writing and rehearsal sessions at the band’s practice space in Liverpool.

Rick Astley is a singer, songwriter, musician, and radio personality. His 1987 song, “Never Gonna Give You Up” was a No 1 hit single in 25 countries, and won the 1988 Best British Single. By the time of his retirement in 1993, Astley had sold approximately 40 million records worldwide. Astley made a comeback in 2007, becoming an Internet phenomenon when his video “Never Gonna Give You Up” became integral to the meme known as “rickrolling”. Astley was voted “Best Act Ever” by Internet users at the MTV Europe Music Awards 2008. His 2016 album 50 debuted in the UK at No 1 and he is touring the album now: His performance at Halifax Victoria Theatre sold out within minutes and they all revelled in the nostalgia of the 1980s. Astley was magnificent.

And a quick word for his support too who was equally magnificent. Anchorage, Alaska born singer and songwriter EARL grew up living in a gas station and singing gospel in her local church choir. As a Jazz obsessive since the age of seven, any free time was spent listening to the crackling of classic Duke Ellington and Josephine Baker, both influences to the fore here: Not sure either will be invited to Live At Leeds though!

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