Goodnight Lenin At last, after a gestation period that makes the average Elephant birth seem a tad premature (apparently it takes around 2 years between getting jiggy and wetting the baby’s trunk...who’d be a lady elephant eh?) this year will finally see the release of Goodnight Lenin’s debut album. Definitely. 100%. No question at all. Hurrah! To prove they can deliver the goods against the clock a few weeks back they set themselves the challenge of recording, mixing and mastering a single for Record Store Day in just one mammoth 24 hour session. The resulting recording, just 24 copies of which have been pressed, will be sold on Record Store day itself, this Saturday 19th April (hence the timing of this gig I guess).


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Justin Timberlake You expect a Justin Timberlake show to be an epic event and considering the stage alone costs £6 million it is not surprising that ticket prices are so high. As the lights dim on a capacity crowd at the LG Arena, anticipation is running high and so is the volume of the female fans. Silhouettes of violin players are projected onto the massive honeycomb screen and Mr Timberlake rises up in a white dinner jacket with slicked back hair, looking incredibly dapper as if he has stepped out of the Luhrmann interpretation of The Great Gatsby.


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The Wildhearts It may surprise many to know that The Wildhearts debut album 'Earth vs the Wildhearts' came out in 1993, a massive 21 years ago. The band have since gone through various line-up changes, drug problems and break ups but each time they seem to have come back stronger. So the question is what can this reincarnation bring to the table?


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Manic Street Preachers Tonight we’re back in Wolverhampton to see a band who took on the world, and then refused to go away. From the Gg Junkies team on our musical journey of the UK,  we bring you the boys from the Welsh valleys; formed nearly 30 years ago, in Blackwood, Wales, these guys are here to show us their best - that this is their truth - and they’ll be preaching Manic Street Preachers style.


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Table Scraps A moshing butler, a raffle prize that included a Bubba Ho-Tep action figure, a Fray Bentos Pie, drumsticks and...er...’lube’ (answers on a postcard please...) and five bands for £5 with all proceeds go to kicking cancer’s butt (does cancer have a butt...I guess it does...), what’s not to love eh? First off high fives to Thomas Wagstaff (Female Smell) and Nat Jones for organising it all. Happily Wags beat the disease a few years ago and tonight was his way of paying back the Teenage Cancer Trust who clearly gave him oodles of support during his treatment and recovery.


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elbow Second gig of the weekend for this Gig Junkies team and to music from England: we’re off to the LG Arena to a band with their own truly unique style. From kids that may be seldom seen - maybe they’ll be off building rockets - who knows? Just think of how you handle everything, take off and land - raise your beer glasses and chill-out to the beautiful and unique tones of elbow.


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Therapy? Here at Gig Junkies we’re busy, busy, busy and this weekend is the first of three over three days for this little team - as we cover bands from across the UK. First gig of the weekend comes from the Emerald Isles courtesy of a Northern Irish alternative metal band, who according to their website have been ‘helping the afflicted since 1990.’ They are here to bring us their most successful and very possibly legendary album, celebrating it’s twentieth anniversary release - ‘Troublegum’ - we, the afflicted are here for a bit of Therapy?


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Adam Ant The opening for Adam Ant's UK tour begins tonight in Manchester, and it's not a good start to say the least. Scheduled to appear on stage at an early 8.30, there are whispers around the auditorium that he is running a little late and will be appearing at 8.45. By 9.25 the restless crowd of white stripe painted faces flood the baking hot room with boo's and angry jeers aimed at the 80's Nu romantic star. An hour after he's scheduled to start, the stage manager comes to the front and flashes his torch, indicating that the show is finally about to begin.


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Boy George People will know Boy George for many different guises and vices. Long haired make up wearing 80’s pop icon, DJ, junkie and even felon. All add to the colourful persona that is George Alan O’Dowd and contributed to the fact that I was uber-excited about the gig at Brum's premier venue, The Institute.


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Band of Skulls Celebrating their last gig on the current tour, the rather splendid Band of Skulls found themselves on the stage at Nottingham’s gloriously titled Rock City a day before Mother’s Day and two days before the launch of their 3rd album ‘Himalayan’. Exciting times in the BoS camp.


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Runrig Spring is nearly here and it’s finally warming up - so tonight to the delectable Symphony Hall and to see a band who, to be honest, I don’t know too much about. Off the back of several large open-air, events held across Europe during 2013 at venues such as Edinburgh Castle, and culminating last August at Party On The Moor, Runrig come to Birmingham to celebrate their 40th anniversary with us.


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ABC Ahhhhh the 80s...was there ever a better era in pop? Nope, I don’t think there was. Take 1982 for instance, the year that ABC’s The Lexicon Of Love was originally issued. Number one singles included (deep breath) Don’t You Want Me (The Human League), The Model (Kraftwerk), Town Called Malice (The Jam), House of Fun (Madness), Come On Eileen (Dexys Midnight Runners), Eye Of The Tiger (Survivor), Pass The Dutchie (Musical Youth) and Do You Really Want To Hurt Me (Culture Club). Seriously...now that’s what I call (pop) music. Incidentally (and somewhat incredibly) ABC’s The Look Of Love was only the 32nd highest selling single that year, sandwiched between OMD’s Maid of Orleans and...er...Chas and Dave’s Ain’t No Pleasing You.


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NME Awards Tour On a cold Tuesday evening in Birmingham city centre, I was cordially invited to see NME’s award tour, on the bill were Circa Waves, Royal Blood, Temples and Interpol. NME editor, Mike Williams, says: "Here at NME we are always championing the best new talent, so securing three of Britain's most in demand breakthrough bands to kick off proceedings for the tour is totally exciting. Backed up with the world-beating return of Interpol – one of the most important bands to come out of New York ever – is also a massive coup for us".


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The Stranglers My calendar was set for this 12 months ago even before the dates were announced. Like clockwork this is a annual night out that’s almost set in stone. And this time it’s a tad special. With a glint of ruby, this band are celebrating 40 years in the business. There can be few as resilient and as enduring, with a back catalogue to die for, than what these icons of the alternative possess. With a true stubbornness to call it quits, we’re here to see one of the UK's most enduring bands - The Stranglers.


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