Live at Leeds 2019 preview: top 5 acts to watch

The all day event hits the Yorkshire city on Saturday 4th May, and here are the acts you simply can't afford to miss according to Meg Roberts.

Skiddle Staff

Date published: 26th Apr 2019

Image: Live at Leeds

Much like other metropolitan festivals, we’re talking Sheffield’s Tramlines, Neighbourhood Festival in Manchester or Brighton indie cindy favourite The Great Escape, Live at Leeds is a melting pot of new British music which celebrates the best in homegrown breakthrough talent alongside some great international acts too.

In the past decade, Live at Leeds has seen some pretty impressive growth, going from strength to strength, and this year it’s expected to to draw in a massive crowd of around 10,000 festival-goers across over 20 different venues throughout the city with 200 artists.

But wasn’t has changed is that Live at Leeds still has the very same aim of giving a platform to a whole host of emerging artists alongside more established acts and this year is no different. That is to say, it’s the type of festivals where you go for your favourite artists, but also make the time to discover new music at some really cool venues.

With the main event being on Saturday 4th May at an eclectic mix of venues across the city and we think it’s a great spot to kick off the summer 2019 festival season.

Here are our top 5 acts to go and see at Live at Leeds:


Matt Bowman

When and where: 9.45pm at The Wardrobe Bar

What we love most about these kind of festivals is the one-off sets that they tend to attract which you wouldn’t get the chance to see everyday - and this is definitely one of them.

Don’t miss the chance to watch The Pigeon Detectives frontman Matt Bowman performing an acoustic set of the indie-rock band’s most popular nostalgic hits like This is An Emergency, I Found Out and Take Her Back. It’ll take you back some ten years ago, to your shag-band wearing youth. What a bloody treat!


Sam Fender

When and where: 6pm at the 02 Academy

Geordie lad Sam is the epitome of British breakthrough talent, with the likes of Tom Odell, Sam Smith and Rag ’n’ Bone Man before him, he’s the 2019 winner of the Brit Awards Critics Choice.

This might be your last chance to see Sam play smaller venues like the 02 Academy, so make sure you go and see what all the fuss is about. 



When and where: 3.15pm at the 02 Academy

The noisy Loveless boys know how to put on a good show and are 100% the type of band which really come to life in a live environment.

If anarchic rebellion, punk-rock and angst-ridden blues is your thing, Drenge aren’t to be missed. 


Sea Girls

When and where: 4.45pm on the Farah Stage at the Leeds Uni Student's Union Refectory

‘If you’re in LEEDS tonight, won’t you come to my show?’ 

A lot like Sam Fender, Sea Girls are hotly tipped for 2019 and it’s not hard to see why. They are already building up a tasty catalogue of ridiculously catchy tunes through their simple hooks and banging choruses that are just made to play live- we’re not alone in predicting big things. . 


Sundara Karma 

When and where: 9.30pm at the 02 academy

Unsurprisingly, the funky lot have the headline slot at the 02 academy, the largest of the venues on the Leeds Festival Presents Stage.

Sundara Karma are B-town sun-drenched dream pop all over with gorgeous synths and even better melodies, offering some much-needed escapism in a noisy world.

Festivals 2020