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Top ten London gigs in October

Check out our round-up of the best gigs in London this autumn

London’s autumn gig calendar is always packed, and there’s no reason why this year would be an exception. Among our October gig highlights you’ll find rising stars alongside veterans and legends. Here are our must-see concerts in London this month.

© Rob Greig/Time Out

Nadine Shah

Critics' choice

A childhood spent on the stormy coast of north-east England seems to have bred a glowering intensity in Nadine Shah, or rather in the dramatic gothic ballads she writes and performs. Shah began her career as a jazz vocalist – hence the superb vibrato and captivating stage presence – but nowadays she’s backed by a full band making a clangorous, discordant rock racket that complements her bold melodies very nicely indeed. Hear her here performing from her brilliant new album ‘Fast Food’, a gallery of remembered loves that runs the full range from scathing to tender. There are good reasons why she keeps getting compared to Nick Cave and PJ Harvey.

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01 Oct 2015


Critics' choice

If you’ve lost your libido, forget Viagra and shell out instead on a ticket for this big London date with US R&B superstar Miguel. He just dropped his new album ‘Wildheart’, so this big London show is a chance to hear him croon fresh material alongside epic babymaking anthems like ‘Adorn’. His silky tones and deft songwriting could get a crumbling statue in the mood for sexy-time.

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O2 Academy Brixton , Stockwell Tuesday October 13 2015
© James Medina

Jamie XX

Critics' choice

Hugely in-demand as a producer and remixer, quite apart from his groundbreaking work as one third of The XX, Jamie Smith drops tracks from his debut solo album. ‘In Colour’ draws on the producer’s long-time obsession with British rave culture, and should result in a superb and thoroughly bangin’ live show.

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O2 Academy Brixton , Stockwell Thursday October 15 2015

Major Lazer

Critics' choice

Party-ready producer Diplo and his current Major Lazer cohorts Jillionaire and Walshy Fire bring their electro-dancehall and baile funk to the live arena. Massive drops, skull-shaking percussion, airhorns and sirens and some nifty blaxploitation visuals turn whatever venues Major Lazer hit into a sweaty dance den. Prepare to dagger hard.

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Alexandra Palace , Muswell Hill Saturday October 17 2015

Bob Dylan

Critics' choice

The venerable Robert Zimmerman and his band hit London once again, as his ‘Never-Ending Tour’ enters its twenty-seventh year. His well received latest album ‘Shadows in the Night’ raided the more obscure corners of the Great American Songbook, so a few songs by other people may well crop up on on his Royal Albert Hall set lists. Apart from that, you can guarantee nothing: Dylan’s live set is so erratic that there used to be a gambling website based on it. In the past couple of years he has played material dating all the way back to 1965, as well as plenty of material from his winning streak since 1997’s ‘Time Out of Mind’ – but even if you know the songs, you may not recognise how they come out live, even more so now that Dylan rivals Tom Waits when it comes to transcendentally frazzled vocal chords. Frazzled or not, though, he’s a genuine icon and he won’t be around forever. Don’t miss him while he’s in London town.

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Royal Albert Hall , Knightsbridge Wednesday October 21 2015 - Sunday October 25 2015
© Steve Gullick

Hot Chip

Critics' choice

Finally! It seems like a lifetime since their terrific last album ‘In Our Heads’ (in fact it’s only been about three years), but at last the synthpop supermen from Putney are back in business. Catch them here showcasing their bittersweet dance-pop and soulful disco tunes, which draw on sources as diverse and brilliant as Kraftwerk, Bill Withers, Paul McCartney and Mantronix, and dropping tracks from their hugely anticipated sixth album ‘Why Make Sense?’.

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O2 Academy Brixton , Stockwell Thursday October 22 2015 - Friday October 23 2015

Joanne Shaw Taylor

Critics' choice

This British blues star – who's both a thrilling guitarist and a powerful vocalist – was named Best British Female Vocalist at the British Blues Awards in 2010. With a four-album catalogue and echoes of Clapton's slow-handedness, she's a rising star of Brit blues.

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Jazz Cafe , Camden Town Monday October 26 2015 - Tuesday October 27 2015


Critics' choice

Tipped for mega-fame in 2015, young Stormzy’s a south London MC who’s been working on his sound since the tender age of 11, when he first heard Wiley and Skepta. That’s right: grime has reached its second generation. Catch the kid born Michael Omari here before he truly blows up.

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Koko , Camden Town Thursday October 29 2015
© Jesse Riggins


Critics' choice

Katie Crutchfield channels PJ Harvey, Cat Power and the less thrashy side of Hole as Waxahatchee. It’s great stuff, and her glorious ‘Cerulean Salt’ album attracted plenty of (thoroughly deserved) hype – catch her here in London as she sings from the equally good follow-up ‘Ivy Tripp’.

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Islington Assembly Hall , Canonbury Thursday October 29 2015
© Steven Sebring

Patti Smith

Critics' choice

Her Pattiness doesn’t have a spotless record, as anyone knows who’s heard her version of ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’, but seeing the rock ’n’ roll poet and her battle-hardened band play her 1975 album ‘Horses’ at Field Day was truly incredible. We’re confident that these two ‘Horses’ gigs at the Roundhouse (site of a seminal Smith gig in 1976) will be just as powerful and inspirational. If you didn’t see her in Victoria Park, don’t miss this.

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Roundhouse , Chalk Farm Friday October 30 2015 - Saturday October 31 2015
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