The best gigs, tours and music festivals not to be missed in August
the libertines

While it’s safe to say that July is the heavyweight of the festival season, August is still packed to the gunnels with outdoor music events.

In fact, the festival scene actually seems to be hogging some of our favourite acts, before they then jet off to embark on American or European tours.

So, take this as your  warning – there are some festivals in our monthly round up (I know, we’re starting to get sick of them as well). But fear not – there is still a healthy offering of indoor gigs and tours…

FFS

FFS

It’s hard to believe that this supergroup made up of Franz Ferdinand and Sparks only made their live debut in June, earning their amalgamated project even further critical acclaim. Two art-pop groups, born in completely different decades bring together their eclectic and frenetic styles to create a brand new sound. And it really works. After their sold out show in the Art School in Glasgow this June, the eccentric sextet return to the hometown of Franz Ferdinand this month with a show in Glasgow’s much loved Barrowlands. A further two dates ensure in Manchester and London.

25 Aug: Albert Hall, Manchester
6 Aug: Barrowlands, Glasgow
8 Sep: Forum, London

Alvvays

Alvvays-band

Canadian fuzz-pop quintet Alvvays will kick off their UK tour with an appearance at Reading and Leeds Festival (see below). Drawing inspiration from bands including Pavement, Teenage Fan Club and Oasis, these indie-poppers have previously toured with the likes of The Pains of Being Pure at Heart and Peter Bjorn and John and if you haven’t had the chance yet, their self-titled debut album is well worth a listen.

30 August: The Duchess, York
31 August: The Leadmill, Sheffield
1 September: The Globe, Cardiff
2 September: The Fleece, Bristol
3 September: Rescue Rooms, Nottingham
6 September: End of the Road Festival, Salisbury
7 September: Concorde 2, Brighton
9 September: Oran Mor, Glasgow
10 September: Manchester Academy 2, Manchester
11 September: O2 Shepherds Bush Empire, London

Green Man Festival

St Vincent

Now in it’s 12th year, Green Man has evolved into a 20,000 capacity, fully fledged four-day music festival. The line-up this year is something to write home about with appearances from acts including festival favourites Hot Chip, electronic legends Leftfield, the magnificent St Vincent, experimental Swedes Goat and Melbournian wordsmith Courtney Barnett. In addition to the cracking music, Green Man plays host to plenty literature, film, comedy, theatre and poetry. Oh, and to top it off, expect ceilidhs, bonfires and secret gigs.

20 – 23 August, Brecon Beacons, Wales

Wilderness Festival

Bjork

Wilderness is quite possibly the UK’s most boutique festival. And, if that wasn’t enough, this year they have Bjork.  Enough said really. The Icelandic Queen promises to delight as always. Joined by other heavyweights such as Ben Howard, Roisin Murphy and Nick Mulvey –  as well as a whole lot of gourmet grub, this one is a winner. Tempted? Tickets are still available. Treat yourself.

6-9 August, Oxfordshire

Reading and Leeds

the libertines

You can’t just gloss over an event like Reading and Leeds. It’s happening. And if you’re not going, then you will no doubt be involved in a certain unavoidable amount of sofa viewing. Despite coming under fire earlier this year for being massively biased in favour of male acts, it stands to reason that there are plenty of great artists to check out at this year’s offering – both male and female. Headliners come in the form of Mumford & Sons, Metallica and The Libertines but away from the main stage you can catch an eclectic mix of performances from electro-dreamer Shura, London grunge rockers Wolf Alice, punk duo Slaves, and art-rockers Django Django.

28 – 30 August

Joan Armatrading

A slightly leftfield choice but certainly one worth mentioning. This August, Joan Armatrading will undertake a tour of unlikely venues all over the UK, inclusive of everywhere from the Congress in Eastbourne to the Webster Theatre in Arbroath. Her impressive musical career has spanned over 40 years, with Armatrading releasing 18 studio albums along the way, and this is set to be her last ever major tour.

1 August: Kings Theatre, Southsea
2 August: Cambridge Folk Festival, Cambridge
3 August: Pavilion, Weymouth
7 August: Regal, Evesham
8 August: Glastonbury Abbey, Glastonbury
11 August: Spiegelttent Fringe by the sea, North Berwick
12 August: Webster Theatre, Arbroath
13 August: Kelvingrove Bandstand, Glasgow
14 August: Sands Centre, Carlisle
15 August: The Grand, Lancaster
16 August: The Grand Theatre, Blackpool
29 August: Congress, Eastbourne
30 August: Towersey Festival, Towersey

Faithless

 Faithless

Faithless never stop. They say they will but they never do. If memory serves correctly, they have toured what is set to be their “last ever” two or three times. But they’re back, in what is sure to be as high-octane a tour as you would expect from electronic heroes Maxi Jazz and Sister Bliss. This August they are playing three different festival dates all over the country but they have just announced a further tour for later this year that will incorporate Glasgow, Birmingham, London and Manchester.

6 August: Lytham Festival, Lancashire
7 August: Boardmasters, Newquay
29 August: South West Four, Clapham Common, London

Augustines

Fresh from Kendal Calling, in a performance that has now become something of a regular slot, the Augustines will delight crowds in three further UK shows. The energy and honesty of frontman Billy McCarthy and the freewheeling, passionate nature of their gigs has earned them a reputation of an incredible live band as well as massive support from devoted fans. Famous for deserting the stage in favour of an off-the-cuff acoustic performance with the crowd, they are certainly a band to see live, even just once.

1 August: Summerhall, Edinburgh
2 August: Y Not Festival, Derbyshire
9 August: Forgotten Fields Festival, Tunbridge Wells

Sufjan Stevens

Sufjan Stevens

American singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Sufjan Stevens kicks off a UK tour with an appearance in Edinburgh. Released this March, the latest album Carrie & Lowell was received by critics with gusto, many claiming that it was his best to date.

(OK, so we’re cheating a bit but his tour starts in August).

30 August:  Edinburgh Playhouse Theatre, Edinburgh
31 August: O2 Apollo, Manchester
2 and 3 September: Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, London
4 September: Brighton Dome, Brighton
4 – 6 September: End of the Road Festival, Salisbury
6 September: Colston Hall, Bristol

The Tubes

the tubes

A trip down memory lane comes in the form of eclectic San Francican rockers The Tubes. With both US Top Tens and support slots for David Bowie under their belt, The Tubes know how to entertain (see picture above).  Back in the day, they were known to jazz up their performances with everything from acrobats, tap dancers, and choreographed stage productions to keep things interesting. Worth it for those glasses, I reckon.

3 August: The Fleece, Bristol
4 August: Concorde 2, Brighton
6 August: The Brook, Southampton
7 August: The Clapham Grand, London
8 August: Club Academy, Manchester
9 August: Art School, Glasgow
11 August: Brudenell Social Club, Leeds
12 August: The Liquid Rooms, Edinburgh
13 August: The Robin, Wolverhampton

We Are Scientists

We Are Scientists

New York cool kids We Are Scientists burst on to the indie-rock scene in 2005 (has it really been that long?!) with their brilliantly titled debut With Love and Squalor. Since then, the band’s sound has progressed on to something a little darker, but they still succeed in keeping the New York indie kid vibe alive. TV en Français, Sous la Mer, a reversioning of their fourth studio album TV en Français, was released purely on vinyl this April, as part of Record Store Day celebrations.

1 August: Y Not Festival, Derbyshire
29 August: Old Fire Station, Bournemouth
30 August: Victorious Festival, Portsmouth

Trembling Bells

trembling-bells

After the release of the genre bending  album,The Sovereign Shelf, quirky Scottish folk-rockers Trembling Bells will launch into a fully fledged UK tour on 1 August. As always, Lavinia Blackwall’s captivating vocals promise to steal the show.

1 August: Phoenix, Exeter
2 August: The Bell, Bath
3 August: Tin Music & Arts, Coventry
5 August: Kitchen Garden Café, Birmingham
6 August: The Cellar, Oxford
7 August: Supernormal Festival, Oxfordshire
9 August: Hyde Park Picture House, Leeds
10 August: The Musician, Leicester
11 August: The Basement, York
12 August: Continental, Preston
13 August: Cumberland Arms, Newcastle
14 August: Glad Café, Glasgow
22 August:  The Bell, Sussex
23 August: Doune the Rabbit Hole Festival, Stirling

Main image: Press Photo by Shervin Lainez