June 13, 2008

The North East Local Music Scene


FIRST things first, a pick of select gigs for your consideration this weekend.

THE sweeping, graceful rock segues of progressive post-rock outfit Strangers In Polaroids can be heard at the Carling Academy 2 tonight. As part of the Where Angels Play set, the band are launching their new tracks Life in a Box and Black and White. If their first new material in six months and they'll be giving away a bonus CD of remixes and live recordings. Doors 10pm.

ON Sunday night one of my favourite venues, The Head of Steam in Newcastle, will be playing host to a mix of Scousers and Geordies courtesy of promoters Sing! Shout! Music!

The hook-driven quartet Married To The Sea, from Liverpool, will be in attendance, supported by the beguiling melodic sounds of local miscreants Styles Make Fights and garage indie duo The Hearts. Doors 8pm. pounds 4 entry.

NEXT month, local independent music promoters Beatnik Underground present five-piece Scottish band The Vivians to Newcastle as part of their national tour promoting their new single A Human Angle.

Formed in Edinburgh, The Vivians dabble in new-wave punk, although their music refreshingly takes influence from a broader musical spectrum. Hear twin guitars fighting one another for the rawest, catchiest riff over a disco beat and impassioned vocals.

To be held at The End, on Scotswood Road, Newcastle, on Wednesday, July 30, the night will also have the added spice of Cramlington's young indie upstarts The Ramseys, who will be providing heavyweight local support. Resident DJs Mod 5, Sidco Styli and Little Billy will also be in attendance. The gig starts at 7pm and entry is pounds 4.

LOOKING ahead to the end of the month, Sunday, June 29, will see a German send-off gig at The Telegraph, Newcastle, for local indie electro band The Knutsens. The four-piece outfit have been invited to play in Berlin for two dates, and are sailing over at the start of July to play at two venues in the city centre, and hopefully begin the makings of an international reputation. The band first gigged back in December last year and have slowly built up a reputation as an exciting act to watch live. They are described as rock energy coexisting with bittersweet manifestos of life, ambition, love, keyboard electronics, rumbling groove-funk bass lines and thunderous rhythms, brought back in with upbeat panache. There will be acoustic support on the night from female duo Mishti, as well as a DJ set and general celebration of Anglo-German happiness. All for an entry price of just pounds 3. Doors 8pm. Auf Wiedersehen and Viel Gluck! e-mail: [email protected]

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