2013’s Top Gigs

1. The Stone Roses - Finsbury Park - 08/06/13
Perfect setting, perfect weather, perfect sound, perfect set. The band were astounding, but even more incredible was the fact that Ian was actually in tune.
2. Teeth of the Sea - The Lexington - 07/10/13
Ridiculously good electro-metal-psychedelia from London's best current band
3. Godspeed You! Black Emperor - Brixton Academy - 12/11/13
The perfect venue for Godspeed's unique doom-laden post-rock. Slow building drones
4. The National - The Roundhouse - 27/06/13
Fell completely in love with their latest album, but still didn't expect this show to be quite this good
5. David Byrne & St Vincent - End of the Road festival - 30/08/13
I saw David Byrne sing This Must Be The Place. That is all.
6. Portico Quartet - Cape Town Jazz Festival - 06/04/13
Front row seats for a perfect set of electronic soundscapes and jazz-style tinkering
7. Neil Halstead and Rachel Goswell - Cecil Sharp House - 24/10/13
Slowdive reunion! Almost! Close enough!
8. De La Soul - The Forum - 08/05/13
Hands were thrown in the air exactly as if I just didn't care. I did want to party, I did say Oh Yeah
9. Michael Rother - Netil House - 03/12/13
An absolute musical hero who looked delighted to be there. 40 year old songs hadn't dated a day
10. Rodriguez - Cape Town Grand West Arena - 09/02/13
Rodriguez's first gig in South Africa for 10 years, after the release of his Oscar-winning film. The people's devotion and love for him was incredible.
11. The Waterboys - Open East Festival - 27/08/13
The most amazing thing about these for me was just how good they sounded - despite it being a medium-sized festival tent, they ripped out a sound that could have filled a stadium. An unexpected rendition of "This is the Sea" made it perfect.
12. Sigur Ros - End of the Road festival - 29/08/13
If not for the fact that this was my 4th time seeing Sigur Ros, this would be an easy #1 for the year. Incredible marriage of visuals, lights and intensely beautiful music
13. Public Image Limited - Finsbury Park - 08/06/13
A slightly bonkers choice for a Stone Roses support, but one that seemed tailor-made for me. Certainly nobody around me enjoyed them like I did, but I really, really did.
14. Goat - Electric Ballroom - 27/06/13
German 1970s psych-rock from a troupe of batshit Swedes. Excellent.
15. Melt Yourself Down - Elektrowerkz - 18/06/13
A ferociously crazy jazz-rock party in an industrial sweat pit. On a Tuesday night in Islington.
16. Efterklang - Heaven - 29/10/13
Happy Danes rock us with a gentle intensity
17. Stompy's Playground - Union Chapel - 26/10/13
Tracks by Squarepusher, Flying Lotus and Bonobo reworked by an 11-piece orchestra. Just as brilliant as it sounds.
18. Fuzzy Lights - St Pancras Old Church - 06/09/13
Gentle crooning to pounding post-rock set in a small chapel
19. Metallica - Cape Town Belleville Velodrome - 24/04/13
They were Metallica.
20. Japandroids - Dingwalls - 17/11/13
I am definitely too old to have enjoyed this as much as I did
21. Daniel Norgren - End of the Road Festival - 30/08/13
Relaxed Americana via Sweden. The performance was pure magic.
22. !!! - Visions Festival - 10/08/13
I swear the singer gets more camp and outrageous every time I see this band. Probably the best "party" band around right now.
23. Jupiter and Okwess International - Open East Festival - 28/08/13
Congolese party-starters took me by complete surprise with their brilliance
24. Public Service Broadcasting - Standon Calling Festival - 03/08/13
Mid-20th century Public information films turned into an amazing party
25. Run the Jewels - Electric Brixton - 26/11/13
How live hip hop should be done. Funny, energetic and loud.

Gig Guide

Akala – XOYO – Monday 03/06/13 – £12.00
Politically ranty British rapper, now playing with full band
The Stone Roses – Finsbury Park – Saturday 08/06/2013 – £60 *
Found myself with a spare ticket for this – anyone?
Jurassic 5 – Brixton Academy – Thursday 13/06/2013 – £32
The absolute kings of live hip hop.  Fucking pricey though.
Melt Yourself Down – Elekrowerkz – Tuesday 18/06/13 – £10 *
Madness that is funky and jazzy  but not jazz-funk.  “Like two flies having an argument on speed” – Patrick McLennan
Damo Suzuki and friends – The Social – Tuesday 25/06/13 – £10
Legendarily bonkers frontman of Can.  Friends include the brilliant Andrew Weatherall.
Bizarre Ride Live (The Pharcyde) – Highbury Garage – Friday 28/06/13 – £18.50
Bizarre Ride II the Pharcyde performed in full with all sorts of crazy shit involved
Midnight Juggernauts – Hoxton Bar and Kitchen – Monday 08/07/13 – £10
Aussie Electro-Psych-rockers
Portico Quartet / Funkineven / Gilles Peterson – XOYO – Friday 12/07/13 (9pm-3am) – £12.50 *
The blurb says “deeper sounds across the electronic spectrum”. I say “PORTICO QUARTET LIVE YES PLEASE”
Japandroids – Dingwalls – Wednesday 17/07/13 – £13 *
Angsty-punky- Canadian duo. I’m far too old to like them but I do anyway.  
Open East Festival – Olympic Park – Sat-Sun 27-28/07/13 – £10 per day *
Toots and the Maytals, The Waterboys, Seun Kuti, Armadou & Mariam, Wire
A music line up that makes me giddy, plus all sorts of foodie foods.
Standon Calling Festival – Hertfordshire – 02/08/13 – 04/08/13 – £99 *
De la Soul, Band of Skulls, Digitalism, Toy, Greg Wilson, Simian Mobile Disco … loads
You’re either already going to this, or I’ve been hassling you to go.  I’m right to do this, you should go.  It’s just a brilliant festival.
Visions Festival – Hackney – Saturday 10/08/13 – £22.50 *
!!!, Cloud Nothings, The Soft Moon, Iceage, Still Corners
Multi-venue festival in Hackney.  Guaranteed to be brilliant.
End of the Road Festival – Dorset – 30/08/13 – 01/09/13 – £165 *
Sigur Rós, David Byrne & St Vincent, Belle And Sebastian, Efterklang, Eels, Poliça, Daughter, The Walkmen, Warpaint, Dinosaur Jr.
Intimate festival in a forest with an amazing line up
Ringo Deathstarr – The Lexington – Sunday 08/09/13 – £10
Noisey shoegazers from Texas.  Utterly derivative, but derivative of my favourite things
Junip – Shepherd’s Bush Empire – Wednesday 18/09/13 – £16
José González’s band – Swedish folk-psych-grooves with the world’s mellowest voice
Liverpool International Festival of Psychedelia – Sat-Sun 27-28/09/13 – £40 for 2 days
Moon Duo, Dead Meadow, The Besnard Lakes, Hookworms, Psychic Ills, The Oscillation, Peaking Lights Sound System
This looks  supremely fucking amazing.  Does anyone know someone in Liverpool who’d  be happy to accommodate?