Michael Kiwanuka I made a conscious decision recently to never listen to music through a pair of headphones ever again, reason being, having spent my formative years consuming live music in some of the best musical venues in the country, coupled with very acute hearing and constantly, breaking, losing or having my headphones stolen by thin air, it is a brave decision, but it was one I was ready to live with, tonight was the point of no return, It was a brisk night on the 16th of October 2017, I had the pleasure of close friend to accompany me to see Michael Kiwanuka at The Symphony Hall Birmingham being supported by Bedouine, a very charming, charismatic an very funny soulful and folky songstress.


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Dua Lipa Traffic fighting fans overflowed a sold out Birmingham's O2 Academy to hear female powerhouse Dua Lipa for an amplified evening of dance euphoria.


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Isaac Gracie The Hare & Hounds in King's Heath Brummieland is always a treat to visit. None more so than on this Autumnal night to see a certain Mr Isaac Gracie.


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Beverley Knight As if she really needs a reason to be back on stage in the West Midlands, Beverley Knight was in town last night, bringing her 'I Love Soulsville' tour to Birmingham's Symphony Hall.


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I Love The 90s As an eighties baby I was always too young to see any of the I Love The 90s stars when they came to the UK, the teasing of car radio adverts for the US leg of the tour days after I was due to leave the Florida sunshine didn’t consolidate me either. So when the UK dates were announced the little girl inside of me was more excited than the Pointer Sisters with a Crunchie! And boy was it everything I’d expected and more in the final show of the UK dates!


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Squeeze Way back in 1973 two chaps from South London formed a band that saw them christened the ‘The New Lennon and McCartney’. Three decades later they are still performing, now with a massive back catalogue of hits and they're on an extensive run of UK dates starting at the delectable Symphony Hall in Birmingham. So welcome to the 'new Paul and John' - Chris Difford and Glenn Tilbrook in full band mode as Squeeze.


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Papa Roach It’s sometimes hard to believe how long Papa Roach have been together. Halfway through tonight’s show, lead singer Jacoby Shaddix points out they formed back in 1993 which makes half of the crowd feel very old and the other half realise they weren’t born at the time! They released their 9th album ‘Crooked Teeth’ a few months ago which has received great plaudits from critics and fans hailing it as their best work in a long time!


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Tori Amos I know commitment. I know love, and dedication, and perseverance… as evidenced in my long time love affair with Tori Amos. Through her dabbling with electro (not keen, but I love her nonetheless), creating a beautiful musical theatre piece (vastly underrated), jetsetting to international gigs (staying in strangers houses all over the place), nurturing friendships with other similarly obsessed fans (she inspires obsession and camaraderie more than any other musician I know), and seeing her more than 25 times in my 20+ year love (and counting).


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DJ Shadow It is hard to believe that it has been 21 years since the release of DJ Shadow’s ground-breaking and highly influential experimental hip-hop album Endtroducing. Yet DJ Shadow has not lost an inch of his creative drive, pushing the envelope further yet again with his latest album The Mountain Will Fall. It was on this school night that Shadow was able to play his full set, having previously played cut-down sets at festivals, and hypnotise the packed Albert Hall with a perfectly melange of in-your-face turntablism and spectacular visual displays.


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Rae Morris Rae Morris is ‘reborn’ as an electro dance pop artist. Almost 75% is brand new material played tonight in Leeds and she never stopped moving around the stage, New Moves, New Songs, New Attitude – just ‘Do It’!


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Tom Grennan Tom Grennan is a singer-songwriter from Bedford, who for one night only has brought his soulful voice to London! Following the success of his collaboration with Chase & Status, on “All Goes Wrong,” Tom made it on the longlist for BBC’s Sound of 2017 and the ball has been constantly rolling since, with his debut album, “Lighting Matches” also on the horizon. Now, performing at his biggest headline show to date, for a sold out show no less, KOKO is where the party’s at!


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Beyond The Tracks 2017 In it's initial year as a first festival, Beyond The Trackshad a point to prove. With a lineup full of Indie/Alt greats from Birmingham and Beyond carefully cultivated by the masterminds behind the City's prestigious Moseley Folk Festival, it certainly did this. Over the course of the weekend, the Festival hosted acts such as Orbital, Faithless, indie royalty Maximo Park and the Coral before closing on Sunday evening with The Jesus and Mary Chain pioneers of the early noughties Birmingham Indie scene, Editors. Sadly the weather was not on the side of Beyond The Tracks, but this didn't stop music fans showing from far and wide to enjoy a well crafted line up.


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Beyond The Tracks 2017 The second day of the first ever Beyond The Tracks Festival brought some big-name bands to the heart of Birmingham, including Ocean Colour Scene, Maxïmo Park, The Coral and The Twang. Eastside City Park is a relatively small plot of land, just beyond the tracks (surprise, surprise) that lead a steady stream of trains in and out of New Street Station. The set-up felt rather like a fireworks events, with several fairground rides and food & drink stalls, along with the autumnal (but mostly dry!) weather.


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Beyond The Tracks And so to the first day of the inaugural Beyond The Tracks festival, taking place on a green space in Eastside in the heart of Birmingham; and ambitious festival which for the first day goes all dance / trance / party with the likes of Leftfield, Faithless (DJ Set) and headliners Orbital.


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