Live Reviews

X Ambassadors Throw A Political Party @ ULU

Want to front a chart-topping band? You'll need more than a distinct voice. You’ll need to be a cheerleader, inciting the crowd to wave their arms or sing along in unison, like it was their idea in the first place. You’ll need so much energy that standing still is...

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Curiosities In The Courtyard, Tori Amos Album Launch

Tori Amos is on the cusp of releasing her 15th album, Native Invader, and she's chosen the intimate setting of The Courtyard Theatre in Hoxton, as her launch pad for the record. The venue, a former library and Grade ll listed building, is a hidden gem, tucked away in...

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Amy Macdonald Takes Over Omeara

When Amy Macdonald released debut album This Is the Life some ten years ago now at the tender age of just 19, it was both critically acclaimed and commercially successful in the UK and Europe, landing at number one and winding up three times Platinum in the UK and...

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Maddie & Tae Bring Country to Koko in Camden

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Country Music is the new pop music. And over the past few years, people have been starting to look up and take notice not just in the genre’s heartland – the Southern United States – but both across the US and across the...

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Tonbridge Calling Festival, A PhotoStory

Hundreds turned out in the glorious sunshine for the second year of Tonbridge Calling Festival on Saturday 12 August. The free, unticketed  event was set within an open park and seamlessly run by a team of 40 volunteers. It was set up last year with the vision of...

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Live: Y Not Festival 2017

It looks like Y Not festival has finally found its answer and the operative word of the weekend was most definitely mud. Marred with problems from the start, the festival was cancelled on the morning of the final day, seeing only one out of the three main headliners...

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Live: Wildwood Kin @ The Islington

Wildwood Kin are on the verge of something very big. They’ve already had a single playlisted on BBC Radio 2, supported Ward Thomas on a national tour, played Glastonbury, headlined their first London shows, and signed to Sony. And that’s just in the past three months....

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Live: Ramblin’ Man Fair Festival 2017

Ramblin’ Man Fair, the festival run by Spirit Of Rock that celebrates the best in classic rock, prog, blues and country is now in its third year. Whilst Download has strayed into pop punk territory and Bloodstock books bands with comical names (Infected Dead, anyone?)...

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Kendal Calling 2017 | In Those Beautiful Fields

A music festival nestled in the Cumbrian hills, sounds idyllic and it certainly is, although you’d struggle to actually see the hills and mountains other than the moment you park your car at the edge of the site. Then there’s that nice trek up a hill armed with all...

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Live: Afropunk Fest London, Landing Firmly

As the wet weather continues throughout the UK, Afropunk Fest London lands and with improvements to boot. This year they took over new event space Printworks in Canada Water, London with two music stages, two marketplaces, a food court and various art installations. A...

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Live: Truck Festival 2017

One of the UK’s finest small festivals, Truck, has just had its twentieth birthday – and the site at Hill Farm, near the Oxfordshire village of Steventon celebrated in style with a guest list that belied the ‘small’ festival moniker. Boasting headliners Franz...

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LIVE: Blink-182 @ O2 Arena, London. Whats My Age Again?

Recently one of my Facebook friends posted an article about the appropriate age when you should stop clubbing. In wider context the appropriate age when you should abandon the dance floor or concert hall for the benefit of early nights in with kids and pyjamas. The...

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Live: Slaves @ Tunbridge Wells Forum

Idly scrolling through my Facebook feed on Monday I saw a notification from local band Lady Bird that they were playing on Thursday night supporting Slaves at The Forum, an intimate 250 capacity venue on the edge of Royal Tunbridge Wells. Ticket was by lottery,...

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Live: bluedot Festival @ Jodrell Bank Observatory

Hosted at the Jodrell Bank Observatory in Macclesfield near the M6 between Manchester and Birmingham, the second incarnation of the bluedot festival took place last weekend and drew crowds from all over the country. Bluedot is a very special festival in that it is as...

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Sound Premiere: M1LDL1FE, How You Forget

How You Forget is a new song from the band M1LDL1FE (pronounced Mildlife)  about how we treat memories of the people we love. The track is a slow burner where the instrumental parts meet almost David Sylvian-esque vocals. Pulsing to a steady beat, the song is driven...

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LIVE: Christina Martin @ The Sound Lounge

Nova Scotia singer and songwriter Christina Martin recently released her new single Lungs Are Burning and toured the UK, visiting ten cities from York and Cheshire to London and Brighton. I was lucky enough to catch her intimate performance in one of London’s smallest...

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Live: Damian Marley @ Somerset House

Summer 2017 has brought the heat and American Express have brought their Summer Series to Somerset House with another diverse line-up of artists. It’s the end of the week, the sun is beaming, there's a warm breeze and reggae-riddims are bubbling, music lovers couldn't...

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Live: U2 @ Twickenham Stadium

U2 come out swinging. Having warmed up an already expectant crowd with The Waterboys’ guaranteed party starter The Whole Of The Moon as their intro tape, the band launch into a chronological run of eight songs that have anchored their live performances for at least...

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Live: Ani DiFranco @The London Palladium

The Palladium is an unusual venue for a gig, particularly for an artist like Ani DiFranco.  It is a theatrical seated venue, not conducive to dancing.   The crowd is a female heavy mix, as a vocal feminist and as female song writer who has explored politics, the...

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Live: Kings Of Leon @ BST Hyde Park

You learn something every day. Today I learned that carrying a step ladder and camera rucksack on the London underground in the rush hour when it’s thirty degrees outside is something to be avoided at all costs. I had the rucksack because I was en route to photograph...

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Live: Community Festival @ Finsbury Park

Community Festival has found its home in Finsbury Park and if Saturday was any indication, the inaugural trip to North London has supplanted itself as a festival to watch going forward. Having just two stages, the Main Stage and the N4 Stage, made it pretty easy to...

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Live: Midnight Oil @ Hammersmith Apollo

“We spent more time on this setlist than most people did thinking about how to vote on Brexit,” says Midnight Oil frontman Peter Garrett towards the beginning of the band’s first London show in 20 years. Initially it seems like a throwaway joke from the former...

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Live: Richard Ashcroft @ O2 Academy Brixton

Iconic frontmen of once iconic bands are all the rage at the moment. Noel Gallagher’s two solo albums are an established part of the landscape. Tom Chaplin (voice of post-britpop housewife’s favourites Keane) played a blinding support to Jeff Lynne (another iconic...

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Live: Spoon @ Forum Kentish Town

It’s midway through Spoon’s set at Forum Kentish Town. A fired up Britt Daniel has just led the band, backlit in orange, through a ferociously jubilant Do You. Multi-instrumentalist Alex Fischel begins a moody keyboard piece that gradually swells to Sigur Ros levels...

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Live: Cheap Trick @ Forum Kentish Town

Having just released their 18th studio album, We're All Alright it's pretty clear how influential Cheap Trick are within the rock industry. Spanning a history of over 40 years it was no surprise to walk into the Forum Kentish Town to find what can only described as a...

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Live: Foo Fighters @ Glastonbury Festival 2017

American stadium rockers Foo Fighters were finally confirmed for that historic first Pyramid Stage headline slot at Glastonbury Festival 2015, closing out Friday night, with Kanye West taking Saturday night and legends The Who closing the stage on Sunday. And then the...

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Live: Glastonbury Festival 2017

Glastonbury 2017: Heat Wave, Sausages and A Musical Feast Someone recently asked me for my top camping at a festival tips, I sent her my top ten, however after then spending five days at Glastonbury I have whittled it down to one ... Have the right shoes. What an...

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Live: Jeff Lynne’s ELO @ Wembley Stadium

The first album I bought was Out Of The Blue. The Electric Light Orchestra, that album, and those which followed and preceded it were the soundtrack to my childhood. The ELO obsession has followed me into middle age. I’m the sort of guy who can sing: “Yes, I’m turning...

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Live: Joy Festival @ Groombridge Place

Joy Festival is held in the amazing grounds and woodlands of Groombridge Place which is set near the town of Royal Tunbridge Wells. If you are a parent you would probably know this location with its giant swings hanging from the trees hidden on the trails in the...

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Live: Jon Stevens @ Borderline

Jon Stevens rose to fame in the 1980s, the decade when more was most definitely more. Over 30 years later, he’s still got the same mindset. Instead of just one London gig, the Australian rock legend is playing five across the city. And, although the venues are far...

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Live: Sam Palladio @ The Water Rats

Sam Palladio might not yet be a household name, but his character on hit U.S. television show Nashville just might be – Gunnar Scott anyone? Since making waves when it hit U.S. TV network ABC in 2012, the Country music-driven drama set and filmed in Tennessee’s Music...

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Live: Vieux Farka Touré @ Howard Assembly Room

Every year, Opera North in Leeds hosts a very well curated selection of artists and this week was no different, with an enchanting and magical performance by Vieux Farka Touré. Having been a massive fan of Ali Farka Touré, Vieux’s late father, and seeing Vieux perform...

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Live: Chris Shiflett @ The Water Rats

Chris Shiflett grew up in Santa Barbara, California. His childhood idols were Kiss. He first gained attention as a member of punk band No Use For A Name. And for almost two decades he’s been the Foo Fighters’ lead guitarist. Yet, over the past five years, the musician...

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