Up and coming local artists to add to your 2018 playlist

A new year means new habits – new meal plans, new gym habits and most of all, a new playlist to get you through it all. How else are you going to test those fancy new headphones?

If you’re sick of reading ‘ones to watch’ lists that contain about as much personality as an Ed Sheeran B-Side, we got you. After some meticulous consideration and a lot of spotify streams, here are 9 Leeds-based acts that’ll have you down the front of a gig and chanting ‘Yorkshire, Yorkshire’ with your top off before you even know it (although maybe, keep your shirt on, you’re better than that).


Local lads Marsicans are slowly but surely making their ascent out of the Leeds circuit  - they’ve got a bloody fancy press agent and everything. One for fans of Circa Waves and The 1975, their upbeat pop-rock (with an emphasis on the pop ) is an instant mood booster. Stick on 2017’s ‘Too Good’ at your next gym session - we reckon you’ll run a good 20% faster. Facebook


Missing the likes of The Maccabees and Bombay Bicycle Club? Keep things closer to home with Mugen; a three-piece with an ear for the sort of jangly melody that will instantly recall summer’s spent switching up your MSN display song to gain the attention of Billy from the year above.

Less than six months into life as band, their back catalogue is reasonably slim, but they’ve already enjoyed support from the likes of BBC introducing, with a promised EP and tour on the way in early 2018. Facebook


A DJ on the rise, 22-year-old Jaguar has amassed a CV of shows that reads like a who’s-who of youth culture – Radio 1, 1xtra, Mixmag, Represent Radio and our very own Canal Mills are all regular haunts.

A graduate of Leeds student radio, her knowledge of electronic music is second to none, specializing in house and ambient beats. Her New Years mix is one to keep on rotation – perfect for hungover Sundays where you still want to keep up the ‘new year, new me’ vibes. Facebook

Forever Cult

Like things a bit grubby? Forever Cult are a gang you’ll want to be part of. Blending ‘searing riffs and snarling vocals’ (thanks NME), a strong pop sensibility also runs through their melodies, ideal for those who like their Grunge to be on the radio-friendly side.

Chances are you’ve already caught them supporting the likes of Pulled Apart By Horses, Yuck or opening the Introducing stage at Leeds Fest, but if you haven’t, hop to – their ‘Homewrecker’ EP is a corker and they’re already lining up a ton of gigs for 2018. Facebook

Party Hardly

Regulars at Wharf Chambers fantastic gig night ‘Pizza For The People’, Party Hardly are easily one of Leeds best live bands of the minute. 

In keeping with their cheeky Brit-pop ways, their lyrics contain some pretty savvy social commentary– recent single ‘Living In Moths’ is an ode to the scaremongering that takes places in the likes of ‘the foul, objectionable piss rag that is The Sun’. Right on fellas, right on. Facebook


Favoured by GRM daily, Dave-O is a name to watch in the northern rap scene. The highly polished hip-hop of ‘Yeah Yeah’ will appeal to the Bad & Boujee among us, while ‘Dem Tingz’ owes much more to grime, delivered with a confidence rarely seen outside of London. 

That’s not to say he isn’t proud of his city – his luscious music videos feature some pretty stunning urban panoramas of Leeds and it’s boroughs that’ll have you falling right back in love with Yorkshire. Facebook


A force of art-pop oddity, electronic artist N/\L/\ (read: NALA) is equal parts creepy and cathartic, making music designed to see you through until the early hours of the morning. 

Once you hit play on ‘Limón’, you’ll find it hard to look away – her glitch interpretive dance makes Sia look like a normie, indicative of the treasures concealed in her debut E.P. Facebook


With a mere 714 facebook likes and not a single song yet to their name, you’ll have to trust us when we say that Talkboy are a name you’ll be hearing a lot of round these parts very soon.

The two artists formerly known as Kell and Wes, Talkboy will be celebrating their very first gig on the 16th Feb in support of Public Access TV at the Brudenell, and word on the street is that local promoters Futuresound and Superfriendz are already very excited about the duo. But what the hell do they sound like? You know what you have to do to find out… Facebook


If you were in attendance at the Brudenell’s New Year’s party, then you’ll already known Fehm – moonlighting as The Cure. Their own material is just as intoxicating – a moody shoegaze that wears it’s heart on it’s sleeve. We reckon ol’ Rob Smith himself would approve. Facebook