Pick of the week
NME Awards Tour
This year's biggest-ever NME tour puts two American and two Brit bands together for an extensive tour around the country. Detroit favourites the Von Bondies survive tussling with Jack White in order to plug their "C'mon C'mon" single, while New York's The Rapture still have some convincing to do with their hybrid of garage rock and DIY disco beats. However, it's the Brits, in the form of Welsh quintet Funeral For A Friend and Scottish art-pop-punks Franz Ferdinand, who are truly two bands of the moment. While Franz Ferdinand are close to becoming household names, with a Top 5 single already this year, it's FFAF, with their ear-crunching blend of metal and punk, who could prove to be the most exciting ticket here.
Rock City, Nottingham
The best concerts in the south ...
Supersuckers Sat & Mon
Final dates on the UK tour for the Arizona-bred rockers, whose current album, Motherfuckers Be Trippin', is a delight of songs about sex, drugs and rock'n'roll. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.
Charlotte, Leicester Sun; Garage, London N5, Mon
Winnebago Deal Fri
The twentysomething Oxford duo of Guitar-player Ben and Drummer Ben continue their quest to be the loudest two-piece band on the planet, with another extensive tour and lots of new material from a forthcoming mini-album.
Sumo, Leicester, Fri
Explosions in the Sky Mon & Tue
The first, full UK tour for these dreamy Austin, Texas instrumentalists, whose gorgeous release from last year, The Earth Is Not A Cold, Dead Place, was critically acclaimed. Their Bella Union labelmates, Bikini Atoll, offer tasty support.
Freebutt, Brighton Mon; Academy, Birmingham, Tue
My Morning Jacket Thur
The pick of the NME Awards Show series, in the capital this week, sees the Kentuckian psych-country rockers headline above an eclectic undercard of Danish pop duo Junior Senior, LA artpunks Ima Robot and guitarless Brit-poprock newcomers Keane.
Astoria, London WC2, Thu
Spiritualized Sat, Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri
J Spaceman presents a stripped-down band and a more edgy sound, indicative of last year's Amazing Grace album, as well as plugging the just-released compilation, The Complete Works Volume 2.
Uni, Cardiff Sat; Wulfrun, Wolverhampton, Mon; Lemon Grove, Exeter Uni, Tue; Uni, Southampton, Wed; Brookes Uni, Oxford, Thu; Forum, London NW5, Fri
... and nationwide
Pick of the week
After spending some rare time in the studio, the Oxford guitar-and-drum noise machine hit the club circuit again. Having played some 120 dates since last March, they're a well-versed outfit who, with a dedicated sound engineer who knows how to tweak a PA to its limit and then some, seem intent on becoming the noisiest duo in the UK. Comprising two early twentysomethings, both called Ben, they like to batter drums and uncork huge amounts of riffage, creating a party-friendly barrage of dirty punk-metal. An EP is due out in March, with their debut album scheduled to follow in the summer.
Little Civic, Wolverhampton, Wed; Victoria Inn, Derby, Thur; Sumo, Leicester, Fri
The best concerts nationwide ...
Supersuckers Sat & Sun
Final dates on the tour from the Arizona-bred, Seattle-based rockers, whose Motherfuckers Be Trippin' album is a feast of songs about sex, drugs and rock'n'roll. As the adage goes, if it ain't broke, don't fix it.
Barfly, Glasgow, Sat; The Charlotte, Leicester, Sun
NME Awards Tour Sat, Mon & Tue
Brit rockers Funeral for a Friend top this sortie of breaking acts around the UK. The buzz band of the moment, Scotland's Franz Ferdinand, will swell the numbers, and the bill also features punk-funkers The Rapture and Detroit's The Von Bondies.
Uni, Manchester, Sat; Uni, Leeds, Mon; Rock City, Nottingham, Tue
Explosions in the Sky Tue
The first full UK tour for these dreamy instrumentalists from Austin, Texas, whose gorgeous release from last year, The Earth is Not a Cold, Dead Place, was critically wowed-over. Bella Union labelmates Bikini Atoll offer tasty support.
J Spaceman presents a stripped-down band and edgy sound, indicative of last year's Amazing Grace® album, and plugs the just-released compilation, The Complete Works Volume 2.
The Twilight Singers Mon to Wed
One of the great voices of the golden era of 1990s US indie music, Greg Dulli takes his current project out on the road in support of last year's Blackberry Belle album. Still menacing, sexual and soulful, it's a reasonable substitute for his previous band, the great Afghan Whigs.
Uni, Manchester, Mon; Academy 2, Liverpool, Tue; Rescue Rooms, Nottingham, Wed