Feel the awesome power of live music in 2017, with this month-by-month guide to loads of great gigs in London – all available via www.livenation.co.uk
GREAT GIGS IN MARCH
The hottest gig in March is...
MUNA are white-hot right now. Signed to the same label as Haim and Chvrches, the trio have garnered global buzz for some of the smartest and most emphatic pop heard in years. And that’s before you factor in their incendiary, Trump-baiting performance on Jimmy Kimmel’s show in February.
Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen. Mar 28 and 30.
Other ace gigs in March...
Switched-on hotbox jazz with cracking D&B snares and discordant synths from this excellent London duo (who also play Koko on May 4).
Islington Assembly Hall. Mar 23.
Afrobeat talent behind massive 2016 hit ‘Dun Talkin’ continues to lead the British Ghanian wave.
XOYO. Mar 25.
Accomplished glam-funk synthpop duo return bolstered by eccentric outfits and lavish staging.
Roundhouse. Mar 27.
Ibibio Sound Machine
Hot Nigerian disco meets contemporary storytelling delivered by frontwoman Eno Williams in Nigerian dialect Ibibio.
Jazz Cafe. Mar 30.
Boston Music Room. Mar 22.
Islington Assembly Hall. Mar 22.
Koko. Mar 24.
Roundhouse. Mar 25.
Roundhouse. Mar 28.
XOYO. Mar 28.
Corsica Studios. Mar 30.
GREAT GIGS IN APRIL
The hottest gig in April is...
Who would have guessed back in 2010, when Mr Mars was delicately telling us we were amazing (just the way we are), that he’d end up kissing himself because he was so damn pretty. ‘Uptown Funk’ turned the cherubic Hawaiian from a global megastar into a cool-ass global megastar, and his big, brassy live shows reflect this gleeful shift.
The O2. Apr 18, 19, 21 and 22.
Other ace gigs in April...
Enigmatic troubadour from Peckham who weds ’60s-influenced folk guitar lines with knotty lyrics.
Moth Club. Apr 6.
Playful and ballsy rapper whose live show is electric thanks to superior freestyling, delivered with a delicious snarl.
Tape London. Apr 6.
Heart-scrunching, soul-scorching hip hop from the ‘Malibu’ singer, rapper and producer, playing ahead of a new album with backing band The Free Nationals.
O2 Forum Kentish Town. Apr 16.
Exciting and slick-spitting Croydon rapper tours her new EP ‘Highly Flammable’. She has definitely stepped out from the shadow of her cousin Stormzy.
Village Underground. Apr 20.
Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen. Apr 1.
Koko. Tue 4.
Jazz Cafe. Apr 7.
Koko. Apr 11.
O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire. Apr 13.
Koko. Apr 23.
The Borderline. Apr 26.
Palladium. Apr 27.
O2 Forum. Apr 18-20.
GREAT GIGS IN MAY
The hottest gig in May is...
The ponytail-toting R&B star is a non-stop, multi-octave, perfect-pitch machine – pulling out ridiculously catchy, erotic-pop tracks and bubblegum vids with ease. She’s spoilt for choice live, with a vast back catalogue that includes an impressive 29 singles. Saying that, Grande is bound to play the brilliant, and frankly downright smutty, track of 2016: ‘Side to Side’.
The O2. May 25 and 26.
Other ace gigs in May...
A melting pot of blues and rock influences pours into American charmer Mayer and his breezy back catalogue.
The O2. May 11 and 12.
Powerful pop from the young Norwegian breakout star who has the natty skill to translate teen angst into cast-iron bangers.
Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen. May 17.
Ace Canadian jazz trio – who ladle in flavours of hip hop and have worked with Snoop, Danny Brown and Earl Sweatshirt – play their biggest London show yet.
O2 Forum Kentish Town. May 31.
Scala. May 2.
The Borderline. May 2.
CLF Theatre. May 3.
Alexandra Palace. May 5.
Koko. May 12.
Omeara. May 12.
O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire. May 20.
Village Underground. May 22.
Scala. May 23.
Servant Jazz Quarters. May 23.
Electric Ballroom. Thu 25.
XOYO. Thu 25.
Chronixx & Zinc Fence Redemption
O2 Academy Brixton. Sun 28.
GREAT GIGS IN JUNE
The hottest gig in June is...
Talented and outspoken teen Zara Larsson has a brilliantly fearless approach to her music and public image. Breakout single ‘Lush Life’, R&B-tinged sweet vocals and some well-chosen collaborations with MNEK, Tinie Tempah and Ty Dolla Sign all signalled her path to international stardom.
O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire. Jun 7.
Other ace gigs in June...
The electro-rock titans are still creating chunky and joyously intense synth anthems. Expect new album ‘Spirit’ to shine.
London Stadium. Jun 3.
‘Frozen’ fans: Menzel was a bonafide Broadway star before ‘Let It Go’. Expect superb renditions of classics and more.
Royal Albert Hall. Jun 15.
Guns N’ Roses
Slash, Axl and Duff reunite onstage after 20 years apart to play classics like ‘Sweet Child o’ Mine’ and ‘November Rain’.
London Stadium. Jun 16 and 17.
Take a Brit icon, add a huge amount of pizzazz and a locker full of hits. Voilá–Robbie’s Heavy Entertainment Show Tour!
London Stadium. Jun 23.
Eventim Apollo. Jun 6-7.
O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire. Jun 8.
Royal Albert Hall. Jun 4, 5, 7, 8 and 9.
O2 Forum Kentish Town. Jun 2.
Kamio. Jun 20.
A Tribe Called Red
Oslo. Jun 22.
Jeff Lynne’s ELO
Wembley Stadium. Jun 24.
Electric Brixton. Jun 28.
GREAT GIGS IN JULY
The hottest gig in July is...
U2’s 1987 album ‘The Joshua Tree’ is an undeniable triumph of confident, effusive and cinematic rock. Bono and the boys are playing the entire record in full to mark its 30th anniversary. In a glittering career, it’s ‘The Joshua Tree’ that remains a brilliant statement worthy of its place on so many ‘best album ever’ lists. Pack a lighter and hold it high at the beginning of the iconic red-lit ‘Streets’.
Twickenham Stadium. Jul 8 and 9.
Other ace gigs in July...
One of the grittiest voices in R&B history takes it to Greenwich Music Time Festival. The Jacksons (Jul 6) and Little Mix (Jul 7) are on too.
Old Royal Navy College. Jul 4.
US stars The Weeknd and Chance The Rapper headline but the bill is also stacked with homegrown grime talent like Skepta.
Finsbury Park. Jul 7-9.
Frank Ocean, Solange, Chase and Status, Jamie xx and Sampha lead two killer days.
Victoria Park. Jul 14 and 15.
Finsbury Park. Jul 1.
Victoria Park. Jul 16.
The Printworks. Jul 22 and 23.
Electric Brixton. Jul 1.
Summer Series at Somerset House
Somerset House. Jul 6-16.
GREAT GIGS IN AUGUST
The hottest gig in August is...
Jay Z and Pink are the headliners for this year’s edition of the Chelmsford pop fest. Rumours are that Jay Z will bring new material to wow the crowd alongside two decades’ worth of hits. The varied bill includes comeback king Craig David, returning songbird George Ezra and man of the moment Stormzy. Forget boutique affairs and opt for a supersized party atmosphere.
Hylands Park. Aug 19 and 20.
Other ace gigs in August...
Disco polymath Grace Jones joins Bonobo and Two Door Cinema Club as headliners.
Cornbury Park. Aug 3-6.
The ’80s heartthrobs are back, possibly without the head-to-toe distressed denim.
The O2. Aug 19 and 20.
Kasabian, Muse and Eminem lead the way for a weekend of pure, undiluted, mud-slopping bank holiday mayhem.
Richfield Avenue. Aug 25-27.
GREAT GIGS IN SEPTEMBER
The hottest gig in September is...
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
The dark and brooding Bad Seeds have now reached the venerated level of being musical magicians yet remain totally accessible, thanks to Nick Cave’s utterly unadorned approach to songwriting. Sometimes the result is sloppy and electric, other times tender and near-celestial. Recent shows have danced joyously across their 30-year catalogue. à The O2. Sep 30.
Other ace gigs in September...
Influential New York post-punk band play ‘Turn on the Bright Lights’ in its entirety.
Alexandra Palace. Sep 1.
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
Thirteen years in, Alec Ounsworth’s soul-searching indie gang continue to go strong.
Village Underground. Sep 19.
Fun-filled and funky as hell, this Michigan four-piece have impressive chops.
O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire. Sep 23 and 24.
A 2017 breakthrough singer who first broke through by singing on Chase & Status’ ‘When It All Goes Wrong’.
Koko. Sep 27.
GREAT GIGS IN OCTOBER
The hottest gig in October is...
Whether she’s dripping in meat or chainmail or dressed scruffily as alter-ego Jo Calderone, Lady Gaga always delivers a vocal and visual extravaganza. She’s never been an artist afraid of excess and, due to her extraordinary talent, will no doubt spring between the fizzing electro-pop of her early hits ‘Bad Romance’ and ‘Poker Face’ while also revelling in those more sparse ballads from recent album ‘Joanne’.
The O2. Oct 9 and 11.
Other ace gigs in October...
The rhyme idol born Jermaine Lamarr Cole has really stepped into the big leagues with his last album, ‘4 Your Eyez Only’. Expect hugeness from his new, arena-crushing live show.
The O2. Oct 15 and 16.
After cementing herself as a national treasure with her performances at the 2012 Olympics, Sandé’s ability to connect emotionally with a huge crowd is at a total peak right now.
The O2. Oct 18.
The metal icons are returning to London for a pair of O2 shows to promote new record ‘Hardwired... to Self-Destruct’. Expect Satan fingers and to be deafened by 20k moshers.
The O2. Oct 22 and 24.
Annual coming together of of blues and soul-inspired big hitters.
Various venues. Oct 27-29
The O2. Oct 10.
The O2. Oct 17 and 19.
GREAT GIGS IN NOVEMBER & DECEMBER
The hottest gig in November & December is...
Goth rock has an unfair reputation as being po-faced but Helsinki band HIM have always played with their image, amping up the axe-wielding and sending up classic metal tropes. Sadly, they’re hanging up their eyeliner after 24 years via this farewell tour. Thankfully, Ville Valo has retained his quavering, vocals and the band still RAWK.
Roundhouse. Dec 17 and 19.
Other ace gigs in November & December...
Swooping Dutch symphonic metallers bring their melodic crunch to Camden. They’ll be joined by Marco Hietala from Nightwish.
Koko. Nov 1.
Lilting country strummer with a back catalogue that’s sunnier than a summer’s day in Hawaii.
Roundhouse. Nov 10.
Michael Ball & Alfie Boe
We’re not sure what cosmic force brought tenors Ball and Boe together. But the pair’s vocal bromance has translated into a number 1 album and huge shows in 2017.
The O2. Dec 14.
Book tickets and find more details for these and countless other great gigs at www.livenation.co.uk.