It’s payday tomorrow, so why not splash some cash on tickets to some great upcoming gigs? These five all go on sale tomorrow morning (Jan 31), and are already looking like some of 2014’s live music highlights. And if none of them float your boat, we’ve got another 30-odd listed over here. Debit cards at the ready…
Kanye! Drake! Pharrell! Outkast! Finsbury Park plays host to an eye-popping line-up of hip hop and R&B royalty. As well as those big four and Bruno Mars, you can catch young stars from both sides of the Atlantic such as Ella Eyre and Angel Haze, Earl Sweatshirt and Clean Bandit, and party-starting troupers Basement Jaxx and Salt N Pepa. It’s hard to doubt that this will be one of the UK festival season’s biggest bills, or that it’ll sell out practically straight away.
Formed at Nottingham University in 2011, London Grammar are led by Hannah Reid’s mannered, Florence-ish vocals, and have picked up plenty of comparisons to The XX for their downbeat instrumentals. They were one of last year’s breakout bands and their gig at the Troxy next month has been sold out for ages – book now to see them at Brixton in June.
The hugely popular carrot-topped pop-folk maestro returns for his first tour since 2012, mixing up loop-pedalled acoustica and hip hop beats for a swooning, shrieking audience. He’s gone from the kind of pubs and basements where you’d rightfully expect to find a scruffily dressed singer-songwriter to Madison Square Garden and the Royal Albert Hall – where he’ll be performing in March as part of the Teenage Cancer Trust series of charity gigs.
Robert Smith’s seminal gloom-pop combo play one of their sporadic London gigs, which generally last upwards of two hours. True, they’re not known for being a dynamic live act, but the quality of their material – ‘Boys Don’t Cry’, ‘The Love Cats’, ‘Friday I’m In Love’ and loads more, all bellowed back by a fiercely adoring crowd who’ve nostalgically backcombed what’s left of their hair – means The Cure are still well worth catching after all these years.
They kind of ruined the surprise by counting down the days until the announcement on Twitter, but it’s still a big deal that Slowdive have got back together. Between 1989 and 1994 they were up there with fellow Creation Records bands My Bloody Valentine and Ride as pioneers of shoegaze, the reverb-heavy genre that still has a huge influence on today’s music scene. Now the five original members have reunited to bring their serene and lovely, spaced out, and mysteriously drifting sounds to the Primavera Sound festival – but they’re playing in London first, 20 years almost to the day since their last gig.
Check out the rest of this week’s big gig announcements – including Lady Gaga, Suede, Ella Eyre, Ziggy Marley and Black Lips – right here.