Sunday, November 28, 2010


Last Weekender of the year, so what can we round up for next Monday and beyond to the end of 2011? Well, Lambchop's Nixon and Is A Woman are being reissued in deluxe editions, while the entire Jon Spencer Blues Explosion back catalogue reappears in print on 13th December. Next week, the 6th, we get the dramatic debut from Hereford's own violin-duelling explosive post-rock sextet Talons, Hollow Realm, and a new album, Method, from accordion-friendly stormtossed folkie Johny Lamb under his Thirty Pounds Of Bone guise.

Right, loads of pre-Christmas gigs and we know this can't approach covering all those of STN relevance, but let's give it a shot. Let's start with the dual ATPs. Godspeed You! Black Emperor kick us off in Minehead next Friday to Sunday, their own reunion after eight years off doing, they say, "a handful of other bands, and solitary roadtrips and wanderings, a couple of recording studios built, and a restaurant and 3 live venues also. a film soundtrack and 4 new kids and 3 new dogs. dead-end jobs. some farming and vegetable gardens. a small record label. acupuncture as a livelihood. and three of us just stayed on the road." Their friends include Mike Watt and The Missingmen, Scout Niblett, Tindersticks, Deerhoof, Thee Oh Sees, Cluster, Flower/Corsano Duo, Marissa Nadler, Tim Hecker, Oneida and, drum roll please, Weird Al Yankovic, his first UK visit which also incorporates dates in London, Birmingham and Manchester. In Between Days offers Hallogallo 2010 (Michael Rother & Friends Present NEU! Music), Holy Fuck, Caribou, Four Tet Ulrich Schnauss and Factory Floor for those stopping over at Butlins, and why wouldn't you, before 10th-12th sees the coming of a very different type of guest for Bowlie 2. Belle & Sebastian, who brought about this mess in the first place, invite round Julian Cope, Field Music, Dirty Projectors, Wild Beasts, Camera Obscura, Saint Etienne, The Go! Team, Teenage Fanclub, Laetitia Sadier, Those Dancing Days (who play the Lexington and Cardiff Buffalo Bar on 8th and 9th, and judging by a recent pic we've seen Linnea's hair is now extraordinary), Edwyn Collins, Campbell & Lanegan, Foals, The Zombies, Steve Mason, Best Coast, The Vaselines, Sons And Daughters, The New Pornographers, Dean Wareham, Vashti Bunyan, Frightened Rabbit, The Phenomenal Handclap Band, Apples In Stereo, Crystal Castles, The 1900s, the 1990s (fantastic dual booking), the Amphetameanies and "one of Scotland’s top authentic Beatles tribute acts" Them Beatles, a band whose booking agent doesn't mention their appearance at one of the world's top alternative music events but does list testimonials from Argyle Street Glasgow Debenhams, Kwik Fit Insurance and "Frank Cogan, Landlord".

That's part of the Belle & Sebastian tour, some of which features the London Contemporary Orchestra on backup, starting on Wednesday at Belfast Ulster Hall, reaching Dublin Grand Canal Theatre on Friday, then crossing over to Gateshead next Sunday, passing through Birmingham, Manchester and Bournemouth before ATP and Leicester, Bristol and three nights at Glasgow Barrowland after. Support at most dates comes from Daniel Kitson, doing one of his storytelling sessions with Gavin Osborn. One step up, Arcade Fire hit the arenas, taking on the O2 on Wednesday and Thursday before Dublin, Birmingham, Cardiff, Manchester and Glasgow. Rather less spacious but equally rarefied atmospheres await a new Billy Bragg tour which also kicks off on the first, heading through Hatfield, Nottingham, Preston, Penrith, Glasgow, Norwich, Leamington Spa, Bexhill, Bournemouth, Cardiff and London (Troxy). Surely it's about time for a new album in 2011, although the fresh song he's been playing recently about rich bankers definitely needs some more lyrical work.

Otherwise, in loosely chronological order: Bobby Conn's post-glam insanity hits Leeds Brudenell tonight with The Blanche Hudson Weekend supporting. The Lovely Eggs, The Just Joans, Paisley & Charlie, The Understudies, Betty and the Werewolves, The Orchids and The Felt Tips are among those playing Glasgow Popfest, SWG3 next Friday and Saturday, Stereo on the Sunday. While that's going on The School and The Loves join forces for Christmas parties at London Luminaire (Saturday) and Cardiff Buffalo Bar (Sunday). Islet end a year of hitting things at Clwb Ifor Bach in Cardiff on the 13th, with Sweet Baboo and H.Hawkline supporting. On the same day at London The Social Alcopop! throw a Christmas party with Johnny Foreigner, Stagecoach, My First Tooth and Attika State. Maximalism! at Brighton Concorde 2 on the 15th, in aid of The Martlets Hospice, is curated by Tom and Alex White, featuring Mystery Jets DJing, a silent auction and British Sea Power, Field Music, The Chap, 80s Matchbox B-Line Disaster, the first Electric Soft Parade show in more than two years and The Pure Conjecture, "a supergroup made up of members of Actress Hands, British Sea Power, Electric Soft Parade, Brakes, The Hazey Janes, The Tenderfoot, Nada and 30 Pounds Of Bone". That's just Tom White, isn't it? The Brixton Windmill on Saturday 18th hosts There's Nothing Wrong With Covers III, headlined as with August's Reading 1992 special by Bananirvana (live karaoke of In Utero, essentially), plus the Johnny Foreigner/Internet Forever/4 Or 5 Magicians (RIP)/Eelectricity And Lust Pavement tribute act Kannberg 1664 and more TBA. Stones Bar and Googies Art Cafe in Folkestone hosts Tinseldayer II on the 19th, headlined by This Town Needs Guns with Tellison, Shoes And Socks Off, Cats & Cats & Cats, &U&I (ex-Blakfish), Tangled Hair (ex-Colour), Stagecoach and Ute. On that same night Maybeshewill play their home venue Leicester Firebug to round off their mammoth European tour, with slow burn blog favourites Dysneyland and Dark Dark Horse (remember, we wrote them up two weeks ago) supporting. On the 22nd Slow Club throw their third annual Union Chapel festive soiree, with the Wave Pictures on before. The Futureheads host Futurefest 2 at Newcastle Academy at the 23rd, celebrating ten years of existence with some of their favourite local bands, including Frankie & The Heartstrings. And then it's Christmas. And then it's the new year. And then the whole sorry charabanc begins again.

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