Yorkshire Times
A Voice of the Free Press
Yuvaraj Parmar
Arts Correspondent
1:03 AM 3rd June 2023

Discovering New Bands

During my first year in Leeds, I had the opportunity to explore what  the city had to offer. Leeds prides itself on being a place of culture and diversity, as well as having a predominant music scene and some brilliant pubs and clubs. I have witnessed some incredible bands and groups, ranging from folk to heavy metal to even spoken word. Yet there are two bands that have caught my attention more than any others.

In February, I had the pleasure of stumbling across The Fenton, a pub that happens to host a live mic every Tuesday. Accompanied by my friends, we sat and enjoyed watching the local students from the surrounding universities showcase their talent. Surrounded by mahogany panelling and cut-glass mirrors, this small Victorian-esque pub was brimming with life. With a pint of Tetley’s clasped in my hand, we watched on as a new band approached the floor.

They went by the name of Staff, and their music is an accumulation of some of the world's most revered artists, such as Sam Fender, The Night Café, Stereophonics, and Oasis. At first, I was sceptical. With their modest and skittish demeanour, but as soon as they began to play, they managed to attract the whole audience. I would later learn that their show at The Fenton was their first ever live performance, as the band formed last year in October. With some brilliant original songs in their catalogue, the band consists of three members: Harry Williams on bass, Ollie Moran on guitar, and Finn Wilson on guitar. This indie rock band has attended five other live gigs around Leeds and is currently preparing for its next gig at the Lending Room on June 29. They have remained consistently brilliant, and watching them grow has been an incredible pleasure. They are currently working towards recording their songs. I wish them the very best of luck in their upcoming gig!

The Staff
The Staff
An established indie rock band whose inspiration comes from the likes of Fleetwood Mac, Beautiful South, and John Mayer has also graced the Leeds music scene. The Hobson Band has been together for nine years and features seven wonderful musicians: Chris Ferguson on acoustic guitar, Kelly Hezelgrave on lead vocals, Adam Roney on lead guitar, Chris Davies on bass, Sandi Patel on drums, Zena Malone on trumpet, and Leigh Normington on sax. They have done over thirty gigs and managed to fit in producing a new album, Falling As We Fly, while having their own families and full-time jobs. This new album has been in the works for five years and is ready to be released in September, covering a plethora of genres and all original songs. I have seen Hobson perform twice, and I can certainly vouch for their quality of performance, with incredible band arrangements as well as stunning vocals from Kelly Hezelgrave. I look forward to their new album, Falling As We Fly, which already sounds incredible (journalism has its perks!).

I look forward to continuing my exploration of new and upcoming bands as well as watching Staff achieve its full potential. As well as Hobson’s album, which I hope flies off the shelves as their new album will be on CD as well as streaming platforms. I cannot wait to see both bands again.