This week’s gigs in London may not include as many big name, high-profile shows as in recent weeks but there’s still a lot happening.
We’re looking forward to hearing Rebound, the forthcoming album by Eleanor Friedberger. Since the disbanding of The Fiery Furnaces she’s plotted her own, singular path and she appears at the Moth Club on Wednesday.
We’ve been enjoying Twentytwo In Blue, the second album by Brooklyn-based outfit Sunflower Bean. They’re going through that classic ‘upward journey through London’s venues’ and after previous shows at the Tufnell Park Dome and Scala they have progressed up to KOKO, where they’ll play their polished, versatile guitar-pop on Friday. Big Thief aren’t a million miles away musically and they play KOKO one day earlier on Thursday.
Panda Bear is another artist returning after some time away. He released A Day With The Homies, a vinyl only EP at the start of the year and hopefully a new album won’t be too far away. He plays a relatively small show (for him) at Village Underground on Tuesday. Jeffrey Lewis released a new single Try To Be Joyful earlier in the year and he’s back in London on Sunday night with a show at the Moth Club.
If you’re looking for something more leftfield you’ve got several options. We were impressed by Time Will Die And Love Will Bury It by Rolo Tomassi. There’s a chance to experience their powerful, confounding songs live at the Garage on Saturday.
In other experimental territory Joshua Abrams Natural Information Society perform at Oslo on Monday and the Sun Ra Arkestra play the Lexington on Tuesday. Federico Albanese grabbed our attention back in 2016 with his beautiful debut album The Blue Hour and on Wednesday he plays a show at the Vortex in Dalston. The following night just down the road at Cafe Oto sees a show by American free jazz improvisers Irreversible Entanglements. Shigeto brings his beat-laden and jazz-tinted electronica to Rich Mix on Saturday.
The Field Day line up this year contains more in the way of jazz and soul than recent years, epitomised by the inclusion on the bill by the likes of Yazmin Lacey. If you can’t wait to see her at Brockwell Park in June she’s also at Rich Mix on Friday. On a similar note, Yazz Ahmed plays the Jazz Café on the same night. Moving in a bluesier direction, Shepherd’s Bush Empire is the setting on Saturday for a show by Ben Harper & Charlie Musselwhite who will be playing tracks from latest album No Mercy In This Land.
Finally, there are four other gigs which confirm Wednesday to be this week’s busiest gig day. Simian Mobile Disco play their last gig for the foreseeable future at the Barbican on Wednesday (following the sad news that Jas Shaw has been diagnosed with rare disease AL amyloidosis). We wish him all the best. In south London on Wednesday rising Danish artist Mø plays Brixton Academy, while over in Peckham Snapped Ankles play from last year’s highly regarded Come Play The Trees album at a show at Ghost Notes. Also on Wednesday, No Age return with a show at the Bethnal Green Working Men’s Club.
Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks have a new album coming out in May and they’ve also announced a date at the Hackney Arts Centre on 24th October. Ariel Pink meanwhile will be appearing at Heaven on 14th August (we rather enjoyed his last show in London).
Wooden Shjips are another band that will be returning to the capital, also playing a show at Heaven on 10th September. We haven’t heard from Tunng in a long time but they have announced a show at Islington Assembly Hall on 25th October.
Finally, in surely this week’s most improbable news, if you’d like to see a star of the screen launch their musical career, it’s been announced that Bill Murray will be playing songs from his forthcoming debut album New Worlds at the Royal Festival Hall on 4th June… and Kiefer Sutherland will be appearing at the Electric Ballroom on 21st June.