If you know Leeds Festival, you’re already aware that the event’s now-traditional Thursday night warm-up sets often provide some of the highlights of the weekend. This year proved to be no exception, as Leodian alt-rock darlings Pulled Apart by Horses set events in motion with a triumphant performance on the BBC Introducing stage.
Pulled Apart by Horses always were fantastic live – those of you who were fortunate enough to witness their messy infancy will fondly recall the ramshackle joy of their earliest shows. That same hedonism and intensity of old remain to this day, but these winning traits are now underpinned by a higher level of musicianship. The result: one of the most enjoyable rock shows you’ll see anywhere in 2015.
Tonight at Leeds, newer tracks like ‘Hot Squash’ and ‘Medium Rare’ demonstrate perfect pop/rock poise, whilst classic fan-favourite ‘I Punched a Lion in the Throat’ whips up a frenzy of flailing limbs at the barrier. But it’s the spectacularly profane set closer ‘High Five, Swan Dive, Nose Dive’ that provides the highlight of the evening with its menace of euphoric guitar melodies – more than a little reminiscent of the PABH’s local contemporaries Sky Larkin and ¡Forward, Russia!. If there’s a finer way to embark on a Leeds Festival weekend than yelling along to a refrain of ‘I’ll let you dance with my balls on fire’, we haven’t found it yet.