The sun appears to have been scared off by a load of water this week, but thankfully the heady world of live entertainment rolls on like a train (well, faster and more reliable in fact). There are the usual big names but NOT the usual suspects with one entertainer so huge in stature that he needs three gigs at the O2 to satisfy as many people as possible, which is a fine cue for the first in our Fat Friday round-up.
All on sale from 9am unless stated - prices + booking fees. For ticket availability, click on the images, below, or scroll down for the full event listing.
Form an orderly queue folks, the kitsch and classic balladeer is back in the UK for a short stint at the O2 Arena in 2011, which sounds like a long way off but we all know how quickly time passes and tickets sell these days. Mr Manilow has managed to gather new fans from many generations, particularly with "Copacabana" and "Could It Be Magic?" - I guess we can thank Take That for bringing him back in the limelight. During his three nights (4th - 6th May 2011), he'll be joined by the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra and will work through his classics, other standards and possibly some new songs - tickets begin at £28.50, rising to £111 for the close-up seats.
Alison and Will, alias Goldfrapp, are back on tour in November to give their recently-released album "Head First" a much-needed boost after the relatively disappointing performance of its singles and initial sales. Still, it's a decent album so time will tell - a new single, "Believer", should now be issued during September. A few weeks afterwards, Goldfrapp head to Bristol (on the 9th) for the first of eight dates around the UK, ending up in Newcastle on the 20th. Tickets cost from £22.50.
Corinne Bailey Rae
The Leeds soulstress is enjoying herself by "The Sea", her critically-acclaimed follow-up to her 2006 debut album. The Top 5 collection has been aired at the White House (with Herbie Hancock) in honour of Paul McCartney, spawned a US Jazz-chart hit in "Closer" and has to be a contender for a Mercury Prize nomination next week. Rae has already toured Europe with the album, including the UK, but after her joint US dates with Norah Jones, she will return to these shores in October from the 7th in Edinburgh, Manchester on the 8th etc until hitting London's Festival Hall on the 18th and Leicester on the 19th. Tickets are £19.50 (£25 for London) plus fees.
He's a busy 'Frisky' boy is our Tinie - if you've been to a festival during the summer, you will have no doubt seen him at the Radio 1 Big Weekend, Wakestock, T4 on the Beach or Wireless. If you haven't then check his artist-page on here for his upcoming festy-dates - hopefully he won't be too knackered to play a full UK tour in the autumn. I doubt it - a new album "Disc-Overy", featuring the number one single "Pass Out" and forthcoming single "Written In The Stars" is set for release in August, surely a number one debut in the offing (just like Bailey Rae in fact). The album tour starts in Cardiff on the 10th October and continues through to Oxford on the 31st - tickets are £12 - £14 plus the usuals.
It isn't often you get two premier metal bands on the same bill, but that is exactly what you do have for this tour - with both acts performing a full set. Avenged Sevenfold and Stone Sour will team up in the autumn for a string of dates from Glasgow (26th October) to Brighton (7th Nov) with a couple of stops in Manchester and a date at London's Hammersmith Apollo and the rock stronghold of Plymouth included. These will fly out at £27.50 a pop (London is £29.50), guaranteeing a cracking night of tracks from new albums and past years.
This tango-tinged outfit don't visit the UK too often, save for the odd festival appearance, but in light of the recent release of the new album "Tango 3.0", they felt the need to air it in public. It's a good album, decidedly more trad than their previous two but no less contemporary or chilled-out than usual, so should sound amazing live. Their sole gig this year is on 25th October at London's super Troxy venue, a fitting night for the dizzy sounds of the Gotan methinks. Tickets are £25.
On a similar tip, if only because of their loyal fan-base, is Gogol Bordello. The wild gypsy-punks return for a small handful of dates later in the year with Liverpool coming first on 26th November, followed by a two-night residency at the HMV Forum on 15th and 16th December. These tickets go on sale on Friday, but you can pick up tickets for the Leeds (27th Nov) and Brighton (28th) nights now. Their popularity is such that the recent album "Trans-Continental Hustle" reached the top 75 album listings (66, no less) so tickets will probably sell just as quickly.
There are also new tours by Mystery Jets, I Am Arrows (featuring Razorlights' ex-drummer Andy Burrows) and Buddy - The Buddy Holly Story (the latter in Bristol and Sunderland), but just announced is a short UK stint by the band Train. Massive in the States, modest over here, they racked up a hit this year with the song "Hey, Soul Sister", a strummy catchy little thing that gave Train their second top 20 hit in the UK (after "Drops Of Jupiter" in 2001). If you fancy a bit of easy American MOR then head to Birmingham on 20th Oct, Manchester (23rd), Bristol (24th) and Shepherd's Bush (25th) - tickets are no more than £17.50 plus fees.