15 gigs and tours you need to see this June
natalie prass

Here’s a look at this month’s best tours and gigs – whether you’re looking for the standout acts at a summer festival or an indie act at an intimate venue near you.

And if you still haven’t sorted your Summer plans, check out our mammoth 2015 festival guide.

Earl Sweatshirt

American rapping sensation Earl Sweatshirt rose to prominence as part of edgy hip-hop collective Odd-Future. Since going solo, he’s been making quite the name for himself, mixing youthful naivety and spirit with a flow and turn of phrase that is beyond his years.

1 June: The Institute, Birmingham
2 June: Trinity, Bristol
3 June: 02 Shepard’s Bush Empire, London
6 June: Wildlife 2015, Brighton City Airport, West Sussex
7 June: Parklife 2015, Heaton Park, Manchester

Nas

If Earl Sweatshirt represents the future of rap, then the Brooklyn raised rapper Nas is the forerunner to pass on the torch. Noted for creating one of the best hip-hop albums of all time, Illmatic, Nas is a true artist whose reputation emphatically precedes him. “Life’s a bitch and then you die,” spat Nas on his legendary album – and we’d suggest you’d better go see him perform live at least once before that happens to you.

2 June: 02 Academy, Glasgow
4 June: The Institute, Birmingham
5 June: Roundhouse, London
6 June: Wildlife 2015, Brighton City Airport, West Sussex
7 June: Parklife 2015, Heaton Park, Manchester

Elvis Costello

Elvis Costello is a real artist’s artist. His unrelenting passion for music has seen him dabble in nearly every genre imaginable – all the while maintaining a consistency and rawness which makes him so undeniably unique. Now in his fifth decade of songwriting and touring, you’re guaranteed to hear a wealth of exceptional songs wherever you see him.

2 June: Brighton Dome, Brighton
3 June: New Theatre, Oxford
4 June: Cliffs Pavilion, Southend
6 June: International Centre, Harrogate
7 June: Venue Cymru, Llandudno
9 June: Sage Gateshead, Gateshead
10 June: Bridgewater Hall, Manchester
11 June: Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow
13 June: The Sands Centre, Carlisle
14 June: Royal Concert Hall, Nottingham
15 June: Liverpool Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool
17 June: Victoria Hall, Stoke-on-Trent
18 June: Cambridge Corn Exchange, Cambridge
19 June: 02 Guildhall, Southampton
21 June: Colston Hall, Bristol
22 June: De Montford Hall, Leicester
24 June: Plymouth Pavilians. Plymouth
25 June: St Davids Hall, Cardiff
26 June: The Anvil, Basingstoke

Shura

At turns sensuous and shimmering, London based electro-pop artist Shura quickly shot into the indie consciousness with her sensational debut single ‘Touch’. It’s not hard to imagine that if HAIM listened to a little more Peter Gabriel and ’90’s RnB and a little less Fleetwood Mac, they would probably have created music that’s similar to the dreamy soundscapes of Shura.

2 June: Bleach, Brighton
3 June: The Soup Kitchen, Manchester
4 June: Nice n Sleazy, Glasgow
6 June: Field Day 2015, Victoria Park, London

Admiral Fallow

With a third album having just been released, Admiral Fallow are starting to become the leaders of the Glaswegian folk contingent rather than the promising pretenders. Their new sound seems to hint at a different direction, exchanging dulcet tones and folk instrumentation for electronic experimentation that takes their sound to a new level of complexity.

2 June: The Wardrobe, Leeds
3 June: Bush Hall, London
4 June: The Rainbow, Birmingham
5 June: Waterfront Studio, Norwich
6 June: Thekla, Bristol
7 June: The Cluny, Newcastle

Du Blonde

Newcastle’s Beth Jeans Houghton (AKA Du Blonde) doesn’t so much sing as howl. Her punk attitude combined with a natural inventiveness for creating hooks and melodies are contrasted, complemented and torn apart by the defiant raging of her voice. Her latest album Welcome Back to Milk is one of the most repeatedly listenable albums of the year – spiky, soulful and visceral.

3 June: Green Door Store, Brighton
4 June: 100 Club, London
5 June: Brudenell Social Club, Leeds
6 June: Louisiana, Bristol
7 June: Bodega Social, Nottingham
9 June: Deaf Institute, Manchester
10 June: Broadcast, Glasgow
11 June: Cluny, Newcastle

Andrew Jackson Jihad

Andrew Jackon Jihad are your new favourite band you just don’t know about yet. If you’re someone who has waited patiently for a new Neutral Milk Hotel album, then this Arizona based band have you covered. It must be said that AJJ are significantly more silly than NMH but nonetheless they posses a ravaging intensity and lo-fi fuzziness that instantly recalls the work of Jeff Mangum. Once their music starts and their folky-punk wheels start turning – it feels like the music will and should never stop.

3 June: Windmill, London
4 June:  Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar, Brighton
6 June: Underground, Plymouth
7 June: Joiners, Southampton
8 June: The Moon Club, Cardiff
10 June: Rainbow, Birmingham
11 June: Deaf Institute, Manchester
12 June: Think Tank, Newcastle
14 June: Audio, Glasgow
16 June: Soundhouse, Leicester
17 June: Owl Sanctuary, Norwich
18 June: The Portland Arms, Cambridge
19 June: The Lexington, London

Wu Tang Clan

It’s been a long time coming for Wu Tang Clan fans – but not only are they performing together again, but they have released a whole album of new material. Now that the members have all gone on to have highly successful solo careers, Wu Tang seem more like a super group than a rap collective. Forget all the other pretenders – Wu Tang Clan are and always will be the realest of deals.

3 June: 02 Academy, Bristol
4 June: 02 Academy Brixton, London
5 June: 02 Academy, Glasgow
6 June: Parklife 2015, Heaton Park, Manchester
7 June: Wildlife 2015, Brighton City Airport, West Sussex

tUnE-yArDs

With her melding of afrobeat, lo-fi and indie-rock sensibilities Merrill Garbus’ tUnE-yArDs are not only building cultural bridges with their sound, they’re making some of the catchiest music released this decade. Their third album Nikki Nack is their most schizophrenically frantic release to date, with a live show that more than lives up to the energy produced on record.

5 June: Waterfront, Norwich
6-7 June: Field Day 2015, Victoria Park, London
7 June: Motion, Bristol

Patti Smith

Legendary rock songstress Patti Smith’s ‘Horses’ tour has a definitive feel. More of a retrospective than a concert, it will showcase one of the greatest rock albums of any era. Not only is it undeniably influential but it still sounds as fresh, relevant and essential today as it did upon its release 40 years ago.

6-7 June: Field Day 2015, Victoria Park, London
8 June: 02 Apollo, Manchester
9 June: Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow

Ash

Ash seem to be everyone’s guilty pleasure rock band from the 1990s. They effortlessly combine angular alternative rock with a crowd-pleasing, blue eye’d poppyness that makes their songs so easy to sing along to. Even if most people only remember their hits, Ash are still a band, to this day, who can keep a crowd under their spell and have them jumping and shouting to their pop-rock anthems.

8 June: The Limelight 2, Belfast
9 June: Liquid Room, Edinburgh
11 June: Scala, London
12 June: Sound Control, Manchester
12-14 June: Isle of Wight Festival, Newport

Blur

You’d have to have been living under a rock if you weren’t aware that Blur recently released their first album in 12 years. The Brit-pop legends have clearly sorted out any artistic differences that they had, and with Magic Whip they make a more than solid return to form.  Expect a huge set-list that honours older material as much as it showcases the new.

9 June: Barrowland, Glasgow
10 June: Empress Ballroom, Blackpool
11 June: Venue Cymru, Llandudno
13 June: Isle of Wight Festival, Newport
20 June: Hyde Park, London

Waxahatchee

Waxahatchee’s music is an explosive buzz-bomb of early ’90s nostalgia. Harking back to the days of Throwing Muses, the Alabama based singer-songwriter is the last of a dying breed – one who still understands that how you deliver your words is just as important as what you have to say. Waxatchee creates music that is acutely sympathetic to the interchangeability of angst and happiness of youth – go see her live, you’ll feel like the closest of friends by the end of it.

10 June: Electric Ballroom, London
11 June: The Fleece, Bristol
12 June: The Ruby Lounge, Manchester
14 June: McHugh’s Bar, Belfast
15 June: Stereo, Glasgow
16 June: The Cluny, Newcastle
17 June: Brudenell Social Club, Leeds
18 June: The Harley Hotel, Sheffield
19 June: The Joiners, Southampton
20 June: Bleach, Brighton

Foo Fighters

Love them or loath them, stadium rock gods Foo Fighters have the natural ability to create a classic rock song like no other. It’s hard to imagine the modern rock landscape without thinking of the Foo Fighters front and centre of it – sitting proudly on the fence between alternative and mainstream. Their stadium tour sees them stopping off at legendary arenas like Wembley and Murrayfield – culminating in a headline slot at this year’s Glastonbury festival.

19 June: Wembley, London
20 June: Wembley, London
23 June: Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh
24 June: Glastonbury, Somerset

Natalie Prass

Listening to Natalie Prass’ self-titled debut album is like receiving one big warming audible hug. Her hair-risingly emotive voice brings you out of the comfort zone only to be surrounding by effortlessly cool instrumentation throughout. Her songs have an elegance that hints towards natural talent, a honed craft and passion that surpasses most of this generation’s disposable by-numbers singers with flat-packed soul and charisma. Utterly refreshing.

22 June: Mono, Glasgow
24 June: Islington Assembly Hall, London
25 June: Deaf Institute, Manchester
26 June: The Thekla, Bristol