The first line-up announcement from the Live at Leeds team highlights that the festival – one of the finest in the UK – is fast approaching. From May 2-5, you'll once again be able to see a selection of local performers – psych rockers Hookworms, the noisy Eagulls and new duo Bruising – alongside established and hotly-tipped acts like Thurston Moore, Slaves, Emmy The Great, MNEK, Tobias Esso Jr, Joanna Gruesome and many, many more at the main Saturday wristband event.
Rather than second guess your taste in music and pick out a small number of must-see bands from the enormous and magnificent roll call of bands, we've highlighted five things that are likely to happen at this year's Live at Leeds.
Some of the venues will feel further away from each other than ever before
It happens to us all – on paper it looks easy enough to get from one venue to another in a short space of time but the reality of power-walking on a stomach with beer sloshing around makes it rather more difficult. Give yourself plenty of time to meander and if you can't face the extra distance, pop into a closer venue (there are 20 involved) and you might be surprised by who you end up seeing.
You'll forget to schedule food
When you're presented with a line-up that includes some of your favourite bands or acts you've been meaning to check out, scheduling seems like a doddle. But factor in walking time between venues and you probably haven't left enough time to eat. So a conundrum arises: miss a band so you can refuel and last until the very end or do you just power on through?
Your festival timetable will go out of the window
A schedule is a great idea at the start of the day but by the time you've seen a few bands, standing up feels like a chore. Before you know it you'll be resting up on mismatched seating in a nearby bar, ditching a band to catch up with friends you haven't seen all afternoon, and thinking: 'I'm not walking that far, I've barely heard of 'em'.
It goes without saying that some bands are going to generate a bit of a following in the three-and-a-bit months between this announcement and the festival weekend. If the band you're dying to see is playing in one of the smaller venues, be prepared to queue and understand the flow of festival goers: queue up before the end of an earlier band so when their crowd leave, you can get in. If you don't want to queue, head to the bigger venues towards the Leeds University Union or The Wardrobe. Some people are put off walking that little bit further and both have the added bonus of being near seating and food. Win.
You'll miss The Cockpit
This year will be the first in the festival's history that The Cockpit hasn't played a major part, from pre-festival gigs and the wristband event to after parties. Bands that quickly jumped from unheard-of to must-see could usually be found at The Cockpit, it was often the first venue to operate a one-in, one-out policy and if you lasted until the after party you were likely to rub shoulders with bands you'd seen earlier. If you haven't found yourself reminiscing about The Cockpit, Live at Leeds might be the moment when you wish you were back in that sweaty main room.