Laura Veirs Manchester’s music scene is buzzing. Last night it was the old guard – Patti Smith at the Apollo; The Rolling Stones and Richard Ashcroft playing at Old Trafford. Tonight LCD Soundsystem grace the Apollo and here at the Deaf Institute we have American singer-songwriter, Laura Veirs.


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Wolfgang Flür There’s a good turnout at the Brudenell tonight to see a rare UK live show from ex-Kraftwork member Wolfgang Flür. Flür appeared as electronic percussionist on all Kraftwerk’s classic albums from 1974’s ‘Autobahn’ to 1986’s ‘Electric Cafe’. The audience at the Brudenell is a really unusual mix, ranging from long-in-the-tooth Kraftwerk fans to young enthusiasts of everything techno and electronica.


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The Limiñanas Based in Perpignan, The Limiñanas’ core comprise 'forty-somethings' Marie and husband Lionel Limiñana. Recording since 2010 they recently released their fifth album 'Shadow People', produced by Anton Newcombe of The Brian Jonestown Massacre.


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Girl Ray North London indie trio Girl Ray are still in the early stages of their career and in fact they were all just 19 when they recorded their debut album, ‘Earl Grey’. Amazingly for such a young band Girl Ray have already developed their own distinctive sound, distilled from a melting pot of very diverse influences and they’ve gained a lot of attention and radio play for their well-crafted songs and sincere live performances.


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The Lurkers Although not as well known as many of the classic late 1970s punk outfits, The Lurkers produced some superb songs and have a high standing in punk mythology. Formed in 1976 the band recorded four sessions for John Peel and their debut single, ‘Shadow’, was number 12 in Peel’s 1977 ‘Festive Fifty’. Their album reputation was established by 1979’s ‘Fulham Fallout’, a collection of knockout songs including such gems as teenage anthem ‘I’m On Heat’.


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Jonathan Wilson Jonathan Wilson is a forty-something Los Angeles based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer. He’s released four albums as a solo artist, most notably 2013’s Fanfare which featured a stellar supporting cast.


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Belle and Sebastian Glasgow indie heroes Belle and Sebastian are back on the road promoting their latest music and reviving classic and much-loved songs from their 1990s heyday. Over the past few months B & S have released a trilogy of mini-albums under the ambitious collective title of ‘How to Solve Our Human Problems’ and they are now in the midst of an extensive world tour.


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The Handsome Family Husband and wife duo Rennie and Brett Sparks have been performing as The Handsome Family since the mid-1990s and have a string of critically acclaimed albums under their belts. Currently based in New Mexico in the USA their style might be described as something like gothic alt-country noir. Their songs frequently focus on the dark side of life, with death, madness and general strangeness emerging as subjects time and time again. However, their unsettling lyrics are delivered set to gorgeous timeless tunes and, particularly live, with a wicked sense of humour. The current UK tour is centred on a performance of their classic 1998 album ‘Through the Trees’, celebrating its 20th anniversary this year.


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King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard Tonight is a real labour of love for me seeing my favourite ‘new’ band of the past two years, Aussie psych polymaths, King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard. Let’s just call them KGATLW. Their main claim to fame in 2017 seems to have been achieving the goal of releasing five albums in one year. No mean feat, especially considering that they managed to maintain the musical quality control throughout. However, it also probably meant that none of their albums got in the spotlight in the usual end-of-year ‘best albums’ charts. The band has a very busy world touring schedule and live they are a real phenomenon. Tonight the sold-out Academy is heaving with bodies as fans come to see KGATLW on this year’s rather short UK tour.


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The Lovely Eggs Tonight The Lovely Eggs play the first gig of their tour to promote the new album, ‘This is Eggland’. It’s all rather special as the venue is ‘The Yorkshire House’, a gig-loving pub in the band’s hometown of Lancaster. The Yorkshire House is a small venue and the tickets quickly sold-out when they went on sale, so we are expecting a classic hot sweaty evening of gyrating bodies and uplifting loud music.


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Nadine Shah Geordie singer-songwriter Nadine Shah, has been making a real impact with her impassioned ‘Holiday Destination’, one of the best albums of 2017. While the album seethes with anger at the state of the world, Shah has a reputation as a very charming and personable performer who also likes the odd tipple, so we await the start of the gig with interest.


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Shelby Lynne and Allison Moorer A guitarist; drummer and bassist take the stage and do a short warm up to herald the entrance of Shelby Lynne and Allison Moorer. The two are sisters, raised in rural Alabama, bound and sometimes separated by a deeply tragic event witnessed during their teenage years. Both went on to individual and critically acclaimed recording careers but, now as ‘forty-somethings’, they have just recorded their first album together. Tonight they play all ten songs from Not Dark Yet in virtual track-list order.


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Wand A week ago I hadn’t heard of Wand. Then they were in session on Marc Riley’s Radio 6 programme. I was impressed and then, checking them out, I found they were appearing at the Brudenell a matter of days later as part of a short UK tour. So then it was frantic efforts to get along to Leeds.


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The Weather Station “In order to successfully put on a performance you have to take up space in a room and you have to allow it to be a situation where people are listening to you and you have to be comfortable with that and you have to feel like you have something to say”. So said Tamara Lindeman aka The Weather Station in her documentary short ‘Sentiment & Memory’. Despite suffering from a cold and the inevitable angst associated with the first night of a headlining UK tour she, to use her words, “made it” at the Leeds Brudenell.


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