World Cup Weekend Whopper 11th-14th June 2010: Athlete, Less Than Jake, Pixie Lott, Wu-Tang Clan and more

It isn't just Friday with the bulging pockets this week, there are also tickets going on sale across the weekend, hence our zany headline. So as you get prepared for the weeks of football, arguments and news-flashes of England fans being robbed of their dignity (or their Rolex watches), thoughts turn to post-World Cup entertainment in the form of some good old gigs - well, new gigs then. All tickets on sale Friday at 9AM unless otherwise specified.

Athlete - Image: www.athlete.mu
 

Athlete

Deptford's finest returned to the fray with a new EP late last year, entitled "Black Swan" and taken from the album of the same name. In 2010 they have "The Getaway" ready for release in the summer and with it an extensive UK tour. Beginning in Liverpool on 16th November and ending in Birmingham on 4th December, it sees the Mercury-nominated quartet cover most of the UK, with the possibility of further new material being added to hits like "Wires", "El Salvador", "Beautiful" and "Half Light". Tickets are around £16.50 and go on sale at 9.30am, Friday.

Less Than Jake - Image: www.lessthanjake.com
 

Less Than Jake

If the rumours on Wackypedia are anything to go by, it appears this long-running ska-punk-hardcore outfit have started their own label AND bought the rights to their previously issued material - no mean feat when you consider that Capitol, Fat Wreck and Sire have all dabbled with the previous releases. LTJ are working on a new album, but meanwhile have announced a new UK tour, beginning in Oxford on 4th November, taking in 9 more cities before landing in Edinburgh on the 18th. There's a London show at the Forum on the 8th. Tickets will cost £15 (or £16.50 for London) and are on sale from Monday 14th at 9am.

Pixie Lott - Image: www.myspace.com/pixiesongs
 

Pixie Lott

"Turn It Up" urges the blonde-bombshell and who are we to disagree with that advice? Her fifth single from the debut album hasn't quite set the charts alight, but Lott has 'legs' for a while longer with the announcement of a lengthy UK tour which covers Glasgow as a starter (24th November), Hammersmith as a main (7th December) and Manchester as the closing dessert on 18th Dec. 15 other dates make up the tour with tickets costing £25.85 upwards - note the date homecoming date in Brentwood on 28th Nov, this'll fly out! Tickets are on sale Saturday 12th at 9am.

Wu-Tang Clan
 

Wu-Tang Clan

The Staten Island ('Shaolin')-crew are back with a vengeance and a few planned solo albums, supported by just two shows in the UK, the first in Manchester on 3rd August, the second in Brixton on the 4th. The original line-up of RZA, GZA, Raekwon, Inspectah Deck, Method Man, U-God, Masta Killa and Ghostface Killah have all been busy little solo bees since the last Wu album in 2007 ("8 Diagrams"), but Raekwon, GZA and Method Man have solo work due for release, the most interesting being "Liquid Swords 2" by GZA. It remains to be seen how these shows pan out, but tickets are on sale Friday at 9am, priced at £29.50 / £32.50.

Suzanne Vega
 

Suzanne Vega

As far away from G-rap as you can possibly get is Suzanne Vega, a soothing singer-songwriter famous for "Tom's Diner", "Luka" and "Blood Makes Noise" (just recently covered by Anna Domino). Very much a product of the 80s, her timeless songs have stayed with her fans for the past 30 years or so and she makes a return to these shores with a new acoustic album resume of earlier works, plus a UK tour in June. Vega has added two new dates which go on sale on Friday, these being in Oxford on 12th July and Bournemouth on the 13th, both costing £18.50.

The Like
 

The Like

Feisty-foursome armed with jangly psychedelic-pop tunes sounds good to me and you might just like The Like as well. Five new UK dates have just been announced and go on sale on Friday for Nottingham (5th Sep) to the ICA London (15th Sep) at the bargain-price of just £7.50. I reckon The Like are a name to remember and you can judge for yourself when their second-album "Release Me" hits the shops on Monday. The quartet have just signed with Universal's Downtown offshoot and a single with the same name is released on the same day.

Steve Earle - Photo: Ted Barron www.tedbarron.com
 
Photo: Ted Barron www.tedbarron.com

Steve Earle

A legend for probably a few reasons he'd like to forget about as well as his landmark musical output, Steve Earle returns to the UK for just one date in Cardiff at the city's St David's Hall on 7th September. Having recently appeared on David Byrne and Fatboy Slim's recent "Here Lies Love" project and become a father via his new squeeze, country-singer Alison Moorer, Steve's new-era is shaping up nicely with his last album "Townes", bang on the money. He recently performed some American-folk classics by John Henry for a US radio station so expect a few of these to sneak into the Welsh set. £24.50 is the price and tickets go on sale on Friday at 9am.

And finally ...

Professor Green
 

Professor Green

Other interesting new-sales come from London-rapper Professor Green, the man who has breathed some life into an old INXS track ("I Need You Tonight") and has a new album "Alive Till I'm Dead" ready to go, featuring Lily Allen. The single reached number 3, so you can bet his new tour will sell keenly. It begins on 8th Oct in Cambridge and ends in London (at KOKO) on the 19th.

Nils Lofgren
 

Nils Lofgren

Guitarist and songwriter from the 70s, Nils Lofgren, is also playing a concert tour in October from the 12th to 24th with a London date at the tasty Cadogan Hall.

Hurts
 

Hurts

And don't forget Manchester duo Hurts are also out-and-about in October with a tour starting in Brighton, finishing in London and calling at Leeds, Manchester, Birmingham and Bristol in-between.

Happy clicking!

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