Bloxx I’ve just had the Mondayest Monday blown away by the ferocious and harmonious sound that was Bloxx, along with some of my hearing. You know what I mean; it’s Monday for a start, I’ve just had one of those days and it’s absolutely pouring with rain. Little did I know, I was about to discover a cure.


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Newton Faulkner So it’s clear what we’re in for and boy, does he deliver. When Newton Faulkner appears for his set, the audience are immediately enamoured. He clamours onto a platform underneath the scaffold and takes a seat, surrounded by his now uncovered tools and instruments. I notice no shoes and odd socks, his trademark dreads now knotted above his head and the biggest smile on his face.


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Fun Lovin' Criminals The crowd went wild as Fun Lovin' Criminals appeared on stage. Frontman Huey looking a little worse for wear perching on a red leather chair with his leg strapped up as he hobbled on bravely.


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NOFX A license to hate, Dad jokes and kick ass women. It was a line-up devised as much for the bands’ enjoyment as it was crowd pleasing.


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Johnny Flynn & The Sussex Wit It’s a calm Tuesday night and there’s a faint smell of chlorine as I stand and wait for the support act to appear. I haven’t done my homework on the main act Johnny Flynn & The Sussex Wit, other than seeing two friends who I know are really into their folk and alternative music like them on Facebook. I haven’t worked out the audience yet; a mixture of ages and dress sense doesn’t really give me any clues about the evening ahead.


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Rick Astley “I know your only here for Never Gonna Give You Up” quipped 80’s icon Rick Astley, echoing a social media feed I took part in earlier in the day, 28 years in the business but the song he’s most remembered for, “you’ll just have to wait, you buggers!”


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UB40

Last night two of the heavy weights of Birmingham’s rich music heritage took to the stage for a special gig. It would have been heavily promoted not that it needed it, these are two bands that have travelled the length and breathe of the planet playing sell out world tours in the process they have captured hearts, minds and souls with their musical conquests.

Steele Pulse and UB40 were gracing the main room of O2 Academy in Birmingham. It was a sell-out gig pack from front to back with Brummies’ of all descriptions, demographic and ages.



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Suzanne Vega The brief introduction of "From New York City, Miss Suzanne Vega", sees Gerry Leonard take to an understated stage and begin looping guitar riffs and sounds to create a musical backdrop for Fat Man And Dancing Girl whilst an unassuming Suzanne Vega follows and begins delivering her warm vocal line.  No matter how many times you may have seen Vega, you cannot fail to be impressed by her calm and flowing voice which fills the Town Hall and draws you in no matter how far away from the stage you are sat. As the first song draws to a close, Vega places a top hat on her head for the spine tingling Marlene On The Wall.


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Mark Lanegan Lanegan’s set starts in an understated yet powerful fashion, as he takes to the stage with his guitarist, Jeff Fielder and begins with When Your Number Isn’t Up resulting in hushed tones throughout the rammed venue. Mark Lanegan has one of the most distinctive vocal styles on the live music circuit, he has the gruffness of Tom Waits, the depth of Leonard Cohen and a raucous aspect that is reminiscent of Kurt Cobain which all combine to produce something so evocative and powerful yet with a delicacy.


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