This week’s London gig announcements include everything from the world’s hottest R&B superstar to an 87-year-old legend of swing. Check out our ‘just announced’ list for the full scoop, and set your alarm to book tomorrow morning for some of 2014’s biggest shows…
The world-conquering Montreal indie rockers return to London to play a huge show as part of the British Summer Time series. They’ve also brought some impressive supporting guests with them: Wild Beasts, Band Of Skulls, Future Islands and – somewhat surprisingly – Jake Bugg. It should all add up to a storming live show – Arcade Fire don’t really do understated, so expect this to be an epic one.
Eighteen months since he rebooted his career with a Vaseline-smooth vocal on Daft Punk’s ‘Get Lucky’, and almost a year since he followed through with the smash hit follow-up ‘Happy’, age-defying R&B dude Pharrell finally rolls into London for a long-awaited solo show. There’s no shortage of potential crowd-pleasers in his arsenal – and he’ll probably wear his famous Vivienne Westwood mountain hat too…
By George! The ’80s soul-poppers have announced the first show with their full original line-up since 2002. Hits are guaranteed, with ‘Do You Really Want To Hurt Me?’ and ‘Karma Chameleon’ sure to stir a few hazy youthful memories in the crowd, but there’s a good chance of new material too as the band are reportedly working on a sixth album.
It’s been over five years since London duo La Roux, fronted by the luminous Elly Jackson, first broke into the charts and our hearts with their synthpop stormer ‘In for the Kill’. They scored multi-million-selling success with the follow-up single, ‘Bulletproof’, then they all but vanished. Now, finally, La Roux are back – and their new song ‘Let Me Down Gently’ is one of the best things they’ve recorded so far. This intimate launch gig for their new album will sell out in a flash, so make sure it’s you going in for the kill this time.
The Coldplayish pop-rockers from Colorado with one of the worst band names around – seriously, it makes them sound like they should be manufacturing and selling crap T-shirts and pre-distressed denim – headline another big London show.
What does a sensitive soul do after quitting a Mercury-nominated jazz fusion act? Nick Mulvey, a founding member of Portico Quartet, has the answer: reinvent yourself as a singer-songwriter performing mellow, jazzy, offbeat folk-pop, with a world music slant informed by an ethnomusicology degree from SOAS. It seems to be working for him: Mulvey’s gently affecting sound, showcased on his recent debut album ‘First Mind’, has hit the charts and seen him playing ever bigger venues. Catch him this autumn on the way up.
Howlin’ Pelle Almqvist and his gang of cartoon Swedish punks play from their back catalogue of uber-stylish, two-and-a-half minute garage-pop classics: ‘Main Offender’, ‘Walk Idiot Walk’, ‘Hate to Say I Told You So’ and beyond.
The veteran jazz-pop crooner, who has sung with everyone from Sinatra to Gaga, plays a couple of rare London shows. He may be an octogenarian, but Bennett’s pipes are still in cracking shape, and his gigs are whistle-stop tours of jazz standards and showtunes: Bennett rarely spends more than two or three minutes on each song and leaves little time for any schmaltz.
Check out the rest of this week’s big live music announcements.