Kamasi Washington – Albert Hall, Manchester

David Bowie’s ‘Blackstar‘ and Kendrick Lamar’s ‘To Pimp A Butterfly‘ are probably the two most important albums in jazz in quite some time, and I’m talking decades. The use of jazz with rock or hip hop has helped the genre regain some of what it once had, at least in the UK, and now we have Kamasi Washington filling large Manchester venues such as The Albert Hall. And with young, old and the hip on board, it was an epic crowd for an epic night of The Epic played loud and live. Epic.
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Dinosaur Jr. – Albert Hall, Manchester

Here they are, running in on platform shoes, Dinosaur Jr! The Massachusetts indie rock trio were set to grace us with their presence back in December, a double bill at Manchester Gorilla, but alas, winter can be a harsh beast, with the sickness of J Mascis taking us to new shows in Spring. Further concerns arose after beautiful bassist Lou Barlow did one of his shoulders in, but the dates stuck, pins and all. Wear and tear maybe witnessed from afar, but these dinos aren’t extinct just yet. They’re still juniors after all…
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Fever Ray – Albert Hall, Manchester

The Shaking The Habitual tour from The Knife a few years back brought with it multi-coloured delights a few years prior (I even wrote a review about it on some now defunct site. So it goes), mixing performance with seriously shaken up dance beats. It was a shift from the darker tones played out during the Silent Shout era, and Karin Dreijer’s other band, Fever Ray, has followed a similar style shift. There has been an awakening, one of colour, sex, and delight. Plunge with me.

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Transformer 2 (Bardo Pond, Liars, Godspeed You! Black Emperor)- Albert Hall, Manchester

Transformer 1 was a pretty special all day event at Manchester Victoria Warehouse earlier this year, you can read all about it here! The title comes from Lou Reed’s iconic album rather than robots in disguise, with bands influenced by such noise picked out to represent on the big day. Swans and The Fall were the big gets, but there were plenty of smaller bands waiting to be uncovered; have you listened to Suuns yet?

A Transformer 2 seemed to be a dead cert after such an ear-splitting set of shows, and yes, we got one. Check that line-up out in the poster image above… you got Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Bardo Pond, Ben Frost, The Field, Sculpture, and more, more, more! Unfortunately, a month or so before, the event moved to the Albert Hall with only three bands intact. At least it wasn’t outright cancelled like All Tomorrow’s Parties and Safe As Milk festivities. Are lovers of noise a dying breed? Was everybody too busy getting it on with Metallica at Manchester Arena the same night? And could three bands recreate the magic of the enduring endearing day that was Transformer 1? Read on to find out… yes, yes, maybe. Continue reading

Slowdive – Albert Hall, Manchester

Image result for slowdive 2017

It’s been twenty-four years since Slowdive last played Manchester, but they haven’t been avoiding this fine Northern city, oh no, for the band have been absent from existence for nearly as long. In 2017 they carry the past on their backs, the present held firmly within their hands. At Albert Hall, it was time to fall so slowly into sweet dreams once more. Continue reading

Run The Jewels – Manchester Albert Hall

RTJ! RTJ! RTJ! RTJ! Run the Jewels makes for an abbreviation so easy to chant, and there they were, live at the garden Albert Hall Manchester, taking in all those chants as they danced on out to ‘We Are The Champions’. It was enough to fuel anyone’s fire, and when the rapping began, well, that fire was bright. And you can’t front on that.  Continue reading

Audio Elsewhere 2016

Other similar sounding bits of music writing in 2016:

rollins

Moldy Peaches’s Adam Green bringing his Aladdin show to Liverpool: Here

A number of Liverpool bands set to play SXSW 2016 in Texas: Here

A look at the song ‘Changing Time’ by The Floormen: Here

Beach Skulls signing with PNKSLM Recordings: Here

Introducing Swearwolves: Here

Communions New Faces Tour does as it’s named, bringing new acts to the stage: Here

A look at the song ‘Boys That Sing’ by Viola Beach, less than two weeks before their tragic deaths: Here

Providing a few words regarding the death of David Bowie: Here

A live review of Savages and Bo Ningen at Manchester Albert Hall: Here

A live review of L7 at Manchester O2 Ritz: Here

A live review of Julia Holter at Manchester Cathedral: Here

Listening to Henry Rollins speak at Manchester Bridgewater Hall: Here

A live review of Joanna Gruesome at Manchester The Star and Garter: Here

 

I think that’s it.

The music website getintothis is ten years old this year, so be sure to go and support them. I’m not offering up much at the minute due to sickness, but there is plenty more great, better stuff than mine. The Cosmic Slop is something else.