There are plenty of great gigs this month, so let’s take a quick look at the best Brighton music events for June 2014.
Sat 7 June
The Baltimore based electronic trio Future Islands (above) head to Concorde 2, bringing their heart-rending 80s-styled perfect pop to Brighton for a sixth time.
Springing from the ashes of the overtly conceptual Art Lord & The Self-Portraits, this oddball outfit are now signed to 4AD, They still adhere to the same DIY spirit as in their early days, giving them an assured air of ingenious, and sometimes subversive, unpredictably. New album ‘Singles’’ is the band’s best yet, and now they’re spending a few months taking it around Europe.
THE POLYPHONIC SPREE
Wed 11 June
OK, they look like they’ve been up Queens Road, handing out flowers and hippy literature. But rather than being a strange cult, they’re an exhilarating psychedelic pop/rock act. It’s safe to say any The Polyphonic Spree show will be the most uplifting experience modern music can provide.
Occupying the same meta-physical and harmonious existence as bands like The Flaming Lips or The Beach Boys, the group smashed into our consciousness with 2004 single “Light and Day”. This track, which popped up in various film and ad campaign soundtracks, enabled the collective to invest in a variety of matching outfits. I’ll buy a beer for anyone that can, without looking it up, name all of the band’s members!
Mon 23 June
Anyone under the age of 40 could be forgiven for believing this is the non-stop good-time live revue of the popular Channel 4 show. Well you’d be wrong. Existing on the wrong side of the tracks since 1977, the Misfits set out to make an impression, and created the blueprint for American punk.
Providing a key influence on some of the greatest bands in rock, including Metallica, Guns ‘n’ Roses and My Chemical Romance, this horror film inspired act blended elements of punk, rockabilly, psychobilly, metal, and classic rock.
Although the reach of their merchandising is greater than their music, and the only original member remaining is Jerry Danzig, they still remain a compelling live proposition.
WAR ON DRUGS
Wed 25 June
Imagine Bob Seger and Bob Mould on a road-trip, under endless skies. On the way they pick up a hitch-hiking Neil Young, who educates the pair in the way of righteousness. That’s roughly what War on Drugs (above) sound like.
This Philadelphia indie rock band is doing some heavyweight touring in support of third album “Lost In The Dream”. And If you’ve heard that album, you’ll understand their currently blooming popularity.
Musically they might be turning a little anthemic, but we’re a long way from big haired, excessive stadium rock. If there’s any justice in the world, then 2014 will a triumphant year for this band, and their trippy, lush Americana.
Fri 27 June
Dome Concert Hall
After making the choice between getting off his face and music, Grant chose music. Good for him, and very lucky for us. Since then he’s gathered awards, collaborated with Sinead O’Connor, Rumer and Hercules & Love Affair and had his music featured on award-winning film – Weekend.
Now The Czars’ ex frontman is even further on the rise with his new album Pale Green Ghosts. He’s swapped his previous slightly awkward 70s influences for some blistering synth-pop, as a result he’s grabbed everyone’s attention. From the album’s odd cover, to lyrical content examining depression and homosexuality, this is a release that doesn’t want, or need, to conform.
Fri 13 June
AMEX Community Stadium
Do you know where your mother is? Grammy Award winner Rod Stewart is blazing into town this month. Possessing a back catalogue of serious significance and diversity, “Rod the Mod” will smash out some of his greatest hits at our City’s stadium. There’s no disputing the quality of songs like “Sailing”, “Do You Think I’m Sexy?” and new ballad “Brighton Beach”.
Even though he’s of a pensionable age, Mr Stewart is still a bit of a sexy lad. There’ll be plenty of hyperventilating ladies singing every lyric along with him. Right now, I’d give my right arm to own the Tena Lady concession at the AMEX.
Fri 13 June
If you saw them at The Great Escape… then well done. If you didn’t, then Worthing is only a short train ride away. It’s worth the effort, because the live show is where these lads shine. A year on since their debut album, and their second is almost here.
The indie rockers are also powering around the country with a string of gigs and festival dates, including transferring to the Main Stage at Reading and Leeds. The harmonies are tight, the lyrics heartfelt and the fans fanatical. Things are looking busy for Peace.
Tue 17 June
Here’s another The Great Escape artist returning to the City. If you were careless enough to miss him then, Ezra is embarking on a major UK tour this month. Not indulging in a series of horrendous collaborations has done little to slow this bluesy singer songwriter’s career.
The 20-year-old University of Bristol dropout’s name is increasingly dropped by those in the know, when establishing their muso credibility. Effortlessly cool, witty and soulful, he’s bound to be massive. So it’s undoubtedly a great time to see him live, ie – before he releases a proper album and the Radio 2 listeners get in on
ONCE IN A LIFETIME
Sat 28 June
If you’ve not managed to get tickets for Brian Jonestown Massacre this evening, do not panic. There’s all the mellifluous rock-pop action you’ll ever need over at Brighton Centre. OK, joking aside, there’s an incredible line-up of 70s talent in Once In A Lifetime.
Featuring The Osmonds, David Essex, Showaddywaddy and Les Mckeown’s Legendary Bay City Rollers, the concert puts together the heavyweights of Britain’s bygone pop scene for one last time.
There are few songs summoning the youthful spirit of The Osmonds’ “Crazy Horses” or embrace new found freedoms like Essex’s “Silver Dream Machine”. The faces may be creased, but the sentiment in their songs is something that will last forever.
Sat 28 June
The Old Market
Polica are back for an intimate Glastonbury warm-up show.
The eagerly anticipated new album ‘Shulamith’ deploys the unique sonic palette that Polica developed on their critically acclaimed debut album ‘Give You The Ghost’.
Drawing on elements of R&B, electronica and dub, and blending them with effects-laden vocals, Polica are arguably one of the most innovative and exciting new bands in the UK.
FUCK FACE UNSTOPPABLE
Mon 30 June
Formed by Bam Margera, the delightfully named Fuckface Unstoppable are probably best known for their tender love ballad: Bend My Dick.
Professional skateboarder Margera grabbed worldwide fame arseing about on TV’s Jackass. Here he teams up with his brother Jess, Alex Flamsteed from Guttermouth, Waldie from Viking Skull, Novak, Matty J, Murry, Hanna from Black Cowgirl, and the Brandywine Eel from Gnarkill to form a metal super-group.
Gather your relatives and get them to dress for sweaty conditions, this is top rocking fun for the entire family.
THE NAKED AND FAMOUS
Mon 30 June
The Naked and Famous (below) are one of New Zealand’s finest exports, bursting out with debut album “Passive Me, Aggressive You”. Displaying an innate ability to write the perfect pop hook, these sparkling antipodeans are the masters of the grand, brooding electro pop-song.
Growing up listening to artists such as Massive Attack, Bjork and Tricky, the band made their name in Britain after their single ‘Young Blood’ was picked up by Radio 1, and the band was subsequently nominated for the ‘BBC’s Sound of 2011’ award.
Last year’s second album ‘In Rolling Waves”, proved that the band was still successfully balancing commercial appeal and indie cool. Just don’t call them Australian.