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Israel Nash, The Islington, London

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Americana singer-songwriter Israel Nash at The Islington, London on 22 February 2017 Israel Nash played an intimate, stripped-down acoustic set for his London fans, while on tour supporting Band of Horses. When people talk about intimate gigs it is usually code for “no one showed up”, but occasionally well-known artists will do a small, sometimes secret, show in the middle of a major tour. Americana singer-songwriter Israel Nash, and his band, is currently touring Europe as support for Band of Horses. On the rest day of the sold-out London leg of the tour, Nash gave the rest of his band…

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Johnossi, Oslo, London

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Scandi-rock duo Johnossi played at Oslo Hackney, London on 15 February 2017. Crowd-pleasing anthemic songs were the order of the day for the Swedish pop-rockers – singer-guitarist John Englebert and drummer Oskar “Ossi” Bonde. For better or worse, Abba put Sweden on the musical map. The country’s musicians have been trying to get from under that shadow ever since. On the upside, as with most of the other nordic/Scandinavian countries, there is a lot of government support for its pop/rock artists, and rightly so. In Iceland, for example, music is the second biggest export, after fish. It was through an almost accidental…

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‘As Lions’ Announce Headline Show in London

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As Lions. Photo by John McMurtrie

As Lions announce headline show at London’s Boston Arms Music Rooms on Wednesday 22nd March! Following the release of their highly acclaimed debut album Selfish Age via Better Noise Records last month, UK band As Lions have announced a London headline show at the Boston Arms Music Rooms on March 22nd. This special date in the capital serves as the perfect warm-up for the band’s 10-date US tour with Shinedown that kicks off in April. Check out the lyric video for latest single ‘Bury My Dead’ As Lions are also confirmed for their first UK festival appearance of the year at Bristol’s Fat Lip Festival in July, along with Young…

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Matt Boroff, The Old Blue Last, London

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Matt Boroff and the Mirrors impressed an intimate audience at The Old Blue Last in Shoreditch. The Austria-based American guitarist and singer, and his band played a set of superb musicianship deserving of a much larger audience. The London live music scene is a strange one. There’s no doubt that it’s in rude health at the moment, with no shortage of gigs every night of the week. Everyone still wants to play London, and it’s not uncommon to see well-known overseas artists playing small venues usually reserved for burgeoning underground scene. The Old Blue Last in Shoreditch is a prime example…

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Aaron West and the Roaring Twenties, London.

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On the 2nd February 2017, Dan Campbell from The Wonder Years performed a one-off, full band show with his side project ‘Aaron West and the Roaring Twenties’ at The Dome in London. For those unfamiliar to Aaron West and the Roaring Twenties, Aaron West is a fictional character that Campbell made up for this project, stating on his Facebook page that it is a “character study conducted through music”. Campbell performs Aaron West shows completely in character. The show had originally been booked at The Boston Music Rooms, but with a high demand that left the tickets selling out in…

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Richard Ashcroft, O2 Arena, London

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The former Verve frontman thrills under the Docklands big top with material new and old. An awful lot of bad things have happened this year. Richard Ashcroft’s ‘These People’ album and the subsequent tour promoting it were not either of those things. I’ll be honest and say that I don’t own a single recorded work by Richard Ashcroft; either as a solo artist or from when he was fronting The Verve. This wasn’t a problem on Friday night at The O2. His highly regarded new album has been play-listed by right-thinking radio stations across the country and the finest cuts…

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Black Grape, The Electric Ballroom, Camden

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Black Grape descend on iconic Camden venue to continue the 21st anniversary celebration of ‘It’s Great When You’re Straight… Yeah’. The Electric Ballroom swung to memorable beats as Shaun Ryder, Paul ‘Kermit’ Leveridge and the 2015 reboot of Black Grape re-ignited the flame that shone all-too briefly in the mid-nineties. One thing’s for sure; Black Grape fans might like their music, but they obviously like the pub in at least equal measure. Twenty minutes before the band were due to start, an agoraphobic would still have felt a bit twitchy amid the open space on the floor of the ballroom.…

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Van Morrison & Jeff Beck, The O2 Arena, London

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Two iconic heavyweights of popular music close out BluesFest 2016 in London’s docklands. Jeff Beck and Van Morrison shared the limelight in the capacious environment of the O2 Arena on Sunday night and basked in the sound of rapturous applause and sight of standing ovations as they did so. This was the closing act to a three-day festival that for the past couple of years has been held under the O2 canvas and goes by the name of ‘BluesFest’. In reality, this event suffers from a bit of an identity crises and if your idea of the blues begins and…

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Garbage, Troxy, London

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Troxy, in Tower Hamlets East London, is a marvellous place. Constructed in 1933 as a grand Art Deco cinema, Troxy’s extravagant chandeliers and giant mirrors reflected the confidence and glamour of the early part of the period. As with many such buildings, in later years it had experienced some decline – being left empty for a period and used as a bingo hall for quarter of a century. In 2010, a six-year restoration project was commenced, and the building – including its stunning Wurlitzer organ (the largest in Europe) – now gleams, rightfully occupying its place as one of London’s…

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