Highly Suspect If you've not heard of Highly Suspect then in 2018 that's all going to change. The trio originally from Cape Cod, Massachusetts deal in the sort of rock that fits easily along side day time radio friendly pop yet often nips across the border into harder territory… Think Royal Blood and you won't be far off.


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Paolo Nutini Summer arrived in Manchester this week, at long last, and with the humidity came Summer In The City; a series of gigs hosted at outdoor venue Castlefield Bowl. With a line-up including The Charlatans and Noel Gallagher, it's a must-see set of gigs, especially with the first night being headlined by Paolo Nutini.


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Ani DiFranco The first time I saw Difranco was probably 1998. I proceeded to see her at least once every year since, and even 3+ times in my especially obsessive years between 2001 - 2004.  I feel like I know her face better than many friends, her albums have accompanied me around the world, and she has been the soundtrack to some of my more intimate and lasting friendships.


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Extreme So let’s take ourselves back in time to 1990 as a over 2,000 people head into Birmingham to see veteran (this makes me feel old) rockers as they bring their classic album, 'Pornograffitti' to town. They be performing it from top to bottom in it’s entirety in track order. Get your singing voice ready and be prepared to rock with Extreme.


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Depeche Mode So on a slightly wet January eve we head to the LG Arena and make it with just one minute to spare. Mega-giants of the dark side of electronica are here tonight, and 15,000 loyal devotees are here because they know they are guaranteed one hell of a gig. Andy Fletcher, Martin L. Gore and Dave Gahan, aka Depeche Mode, are here to give us a black celebration...


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London Grammar Thanks to the internet it’s seemingly possible these days to record a track in the morning, stick it up online at lunchtime and be the next big thing before Deal Or No Deal. All it takes is for an uploaded video on You Tube to catch the public’s imagination and voila, record labels beating a path to your door and Jools Holland climbing over your fence begging you to tickle his ivories. I’m not entirely sure if this was London Grammar’s sole route to success but they, like a number of other acts recently, do seem to have come from nowhere. Now with a US tour under their belts and debut album that narrowly missed being number one in the UK charts they’re playing a sold out show at the 600 person capacity Academy 2 with a return visit to the main Academy room already booked for next February. Blimey.


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Toro y Moi Although he is known as a solo artist, Toro Y Moi is one of those musical entities with whom you have no earthly idea how many people or what instruments they will bring on stage. A single man on stage with a laptop would not be completely out of the question, nor would a synth and drums duo. Anything short of a full orchestra would probably be viable. This evening however, we are greeted with the man also known as Chaz Bundick and a surprisingly traditional complement of support; bass, guitar, live drums and synths.


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The Pigeon Detectives An extra hundred people or so appear in the main room and a sudden wave of energy fills the room as the five Leeds lads kick off with “Animal” from the new album. No time for talking they get straight into the next song “I Found Out” from their debut album. I was a little worried before the gig that the band would not be playing many songs from their earlier albums but that worry was remedied fairly early. Songs from their first album as common as songs from their more recent and all celebrated equally, based on the amount of beer flying around.


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Barn Owl The reassuring predictability of any Capsule event (nothing so vulgar or prosaic as just a ‘gig’ about Capsule) will be its...well, unpredictability. And none more so that with this electronica/existential/experimenta triple line-up. Though it did take some getting used to watching congregated punters with pints shuffling politely in to high, wooden box-stall pews surrounded by the austere beauty of St Paul’s neo-classical columns and pediments. A bit like a piss-up watching the courtroom hysteria in Miller’s The Crucible, possibly.


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Barn Owl The reassuring predictability of any Capsule event (nothing so vulgar or prosaic as just a ‘gig’ about Capsule) will be its...well, unpredictability. And none more so that with this electronica/existential/experimenta triple line-up. Though it did take some getting used to watching congregated punters with pints shuffling politely in to high, wooden box-stall pews surrounded by the austere beauty of St Paul’s neo-classical columns and pediments. A bit like a piss-up watching the courtroom hysteria in Miller’s The Crucible, possibly.


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Emeli Sandé Tonight is Emeli Sandé's second night in Birmingham on her sold out tour celebrating the release of ‘Our Version of Events’ - Special Edition. Gig Junkies' very own Katja got to shoot the beautiful songstress' show. We hope that you like what she saw.


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Kerrang! Tour 2013 So this Valentine’s night, we’ve given up a romantic meal for a night at the O2 Academy for a bit of up-and-coming rock, we’re at the Kerrang! Tour 2013. An eclectic mix of punk rock, in your face screaming and goth glam rock… Kerrang! was once the place of denim, leather, spiral perms and Iron Maiden. Thirty odd years on, as the rock genre has spread and merged with other genres, the music that Kerrang! plays and promotes has followed suit. So this 2013 tour is all about new talent and if it’s objective is about bringing the next generation into the world of rock n’ roll than it’s obviously worked. Because the crowd is made up of little people - max age of 15 if I’m being generous, kids with face-paint everywhere and the odd parent in tow.


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Ben Howard It's not often that you're more excited about the support act than the main event when you attend a gig - especially when it is to see the flavour of the moment Ben Howard - but that's exactly how I felt as we made our way to a sodden O2 along with a multitude of other gig goers all anticipating a cracking night of folk/pop fusion with Messrs’ Ben Howard and America’s little known Willy Mason.


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