The Tab’s Gig Guide
Exams may be looming, but there’s plenty of gigs going on to take your mind off them
Everyone’s back from the Easter Break, and the terrifying prospect of exams, dissertation deadlines and graduation are looming. Fortunately, there’s plenty of gigs coming up that will take your mind off your impending doom, and The Tab has picked the best of the best.
27th April – Mystery Jets – East Village Arts Club
Beyond adolescent indie-pop classics Young Love and Two Doors Down, Mystery Jets have blossomed into one of Britain’s most underrated alternative groups.
2012’s Radlands saw the band build on the new maturity they established with 2010’s acclaimed Serotonin with elements of Americana, and with a strong cult following and a backlog of older classics, the Eel Pie Islanders promise a hugely enjoyable live set.
2nd-4th May – Liverpool Sound City – Various Venues
This year’s Liverpool Sound City boasts an impressive mix of some of the world’s most exciting music. Noah and the Whale, Bastille, Everything Everything and Darwin Deez are some of the biggest alternative acts of the generation, while American garage rock legends Thee Oh Sees promise perhaps the weekend’s most raucous set.
Meanwhile with Mount Kimbie and Oneohtrix Point Never representing the cutting edge of modern electronica, up and comers King Krule, Egyptian Hip Hop, Melody’s Echo Chamber and Swim Deep are creating a bright future for indie music. With dozens more acts across the city, the festival is a must for any of Liverpool’s alternative music fans.
10th May – The Fall – East Village Arts Club
29 albums and 66 band members after their formation, Manchester indie legends The Fall remain as individual and acerbic as ever.
One of alternative rock’s most influential founding fathers, 37 years have made no dent on frontman Mark E Smith’s ferocious live reputation, and the band’s set at the newly revamped East Village Arts Club (formerly The Masque) is certain to be an unruly one.
11th May – Alt-J – O2 Academy
2012 was Alt-J’s year. The Leeds University graduates blend acoustic and electric sounds and harmonic, often incomprehensible vocals to create an organic sound that was a breath of fresh air as it took the country by storm last year, winning the band the prestigious Mercury Prize.
With newfound popularity, Alt-J will soon be playing far bigger venues than Liverpool’s O2 Academy, so any opportunity to catch the band live on a relatively small scale should be seized.
17th May – Suuns – Kazimier
Montreal art-rockers Suuns play a hypnotic, minimalistic blend of psychedelia, krautrock, shoegaze and dark electro, and have built a phenomenal live reputation and received substantial praise from critics.
The enigmatic band makes rare visits to the UK, and their sets are renowned for their incendiary atmosphere and intoxicating visuals. Catching the band at the Kazimier will be the gig experience of a lifetime.
18th May – The Specials – Olympia Theatre
Newly reformed, The Specials’ songs of recession and unemployment under a Tory government, disillusioned youth and the worrying rise of British nationalism are as relevant in 2013 as they were in the 1980s.
However, the band’s mix of ska rhythms, punk sensibilities and singalong opportunities make the band simply one of the most fun live acts around. Taking place at the atmospheric Olympia Theatre, The Specials are not a band to be missed.
21st May – Ghostpoet – East Village Arts Club
One of Britain’s finest representatives of the burgeoning alternative hip hop scene, Ghostpoet’s slurring flow and pessimistic lyrics bring a mature beauty to the mundanity of modern life.
With the follow-up to 2010’s critically acclaimed and Mercury Prize-nominated Peanut Butter Blues and Melancholy Jam expected on May 6th, Ghostpoet is an unlikely spokesman for a disenchanted generation at the top of his game.