LIVE: Judas – Leeds Festival, Main Stage 28.08.16

No one at Leeds festival woke up on the Sunday expecting to see London-based indie favourites Judas grace the main stage, especially not the boys themselves. A cancellation on the prestigious stage meant the foursome were given the call up that would change their lives.

Despite being asked to play main stage, something a young band like them could only ever dream of and only several minutes before their much anticipated set at the Jack Rocks / This Feeling stage, the boys’ confidence seemed un-knocked.

They played their polished This Feeling set to an intimate crowd of regular faces (and lots of new ones, the This Feeling tent was rammed as per!) before being whisked off to the main stage to play without a moment to fully let the news sink in.

Upon the approach to the main stage, the boys seemed noticeably jittery, most likely at the sudden realisation of the scale of what was about to happen. For a band so accustomed to playing to small crowds in bars and intimate venues to suddenly be given the opportunity to play to several thousand festival goers without a moment’s preparation must be intensely nerve-wracking: but once the boys stepped on that stage all those worries seemed to disappear.

Front man John Clancy looked more at home than ever in the middle of the stage, and the rest of the band, Sam (drums), Todd (guitar) and James (bass) seemed to follow seamlessly in his lead to give a flawless performance, which came as no surprise to anyone who has seen the band before. This is a band whose big, epic radio friendly songs are built for the big stage.

Giving one final shout out to their peers at the This Feeling / Jack Rocks stage and its founder Mike Jonns, Judas came to a storming end to their set to the roars of friends, family, and thousands of campers, happy at their unexpected discovery of a new band. Judas are band with a great portfolio of crowd-pleasing songs made for stages of this calibre and while this may have been their first time on the Leeds main stage it is unlikely to be their last. It just goes to show, give new bands a chance and…”

Words and photos: Katie Willoughby