For too long now, Leeds has lacked the sort of venue that combines the style and substance needed to rival Manchester’s musical hotspot, Deaf Institute.
Thankfully, those dark days are over.
Belgrave Music Hall & Canteen opened its doors this month with a two-day launch party fuelled by artisan pizza, free drinks and buzz bands.
The ground floor boasts a wall-length bar stacked high with spirits, bookended by two cantinas – one operated by thin-crust supremos Dough Boys and the other by street food gurus Northern StrEATS – who will be bringing a host of independent vendors to the fore, starting with the folks at Fish&.
Upstairs lays claim to a roomy gig space with clear-cut sound and a second bar tucked around the back, promising a programme of events which will see the city’s newest stage filled with both emerging talent and household names. Acts pencilled in so far range from Simian Mobile Disco to British Sea Power and These New Puritans.
Just when you thought Belgrave couldn’t tick any more boxes, the top floor reveals a Wonderland-like roof terrace, dotted with potting sheds, benches and painted brickwork.
Though unfinished, the venue’s rough-around-the-edges decor adds to the charm of its many other facets and its future looks as bright as its glowing neon signs.