We at Allgigs sincerely hope you had a fabulous Festive season and a not-too-hungover New Year, and as the thoughts of going back to work/school/bed loom ever nearer, it's time to report for duty with the first 2011 round-up of what's happening during the next fortnight. So before you waste your Christmas money on running shoes and exercise bikes, feast your eyes on some action that might make you break sweat with excitement.
All prices are exclusive of booking fees. For ticket availability, click on the images, below.
The Scottish chart-rockers return with a series of homeward-bound concerts, including many across the Highlands and Islands. From Orkney via Edinburgh and on to Dunfermline, tickets are still available for many of the dates including the Oban date on the 10th and Edinburgh on the 11th, starting at £14.50. A new album is due in the spring.
Armed with recently-installed vocalist Ricky Warwick (from The Almighty), the legendary Irish rock-outfit re-convene for a string of dates from this Thursday onwards, starting with Aberdeen and continuing to Glasgow, Newcastle etc until two big London gigs in Hammersmith (22nd with FM) and IndigO2 (23rd). If you can't get enough "Whiskey In The Jar", tickets will cost around £23.50.
Holiday On Ice - Energia
The TV series Dancing On Ice certainly increased the public's interest in ice-skating a few years back and now you have the chance to see a huge spectacular on tour from Friday onwards, calling at Birmingham, Brighton, Peterborough, Cardiff and Exeter. Tickets vary from £12 (child), £14.50 (family) and £30 (adult premier), depending on venue.
The master of magic and biting wit returns with a Leicester Square Theatre residency which starts on Friday and runs for concurrent weekends (and the odd Thursday). Tickets are still available at £24 with all performances still up for grabs. Expect scathing stand-up mixed with a bit of card-trickery (and the odd swear-word).
Kissing Sid James
The fringe-scene in London gets off to a flying start with this New Red Lion Theatre production of this comedy-play written by Robert Farquhar. A couple decide to head to the seaside to rekindle a bit of romance, thinking that fish and chips, warm beer and karaoke might do the trick. See what happens for this 3-week long season with tickets costing £11-£13.
Strictly Come Dancing 2011
And so another TV dance-contest comes to an end, but afterwards must come the inevitable tour. The 2011 version will feature winner Kara Tointon, runner-up Matt Baker and the crowd-pleasing (and apparently right honourable) Ann Widdecombe (for most of the dates) and begins in Nottingham from Friday for 3 days, before hitting major cities for the next 6 weeks. Ticket prices start at £35.
Justin Townes Earle
The son of Steve Earle will be setting out his musical-stall from next Friday, plugging in at Manchester's Deaf Institute and continuing on to Liverpool, Nottingham, Bristol etc until winding up at the Union Chapel on Saturday 29th. Justin's album "Harlem River Blues" made a breakthrough in the US last year, mixing Americana and blues and a bit of his father's attitude. The London date has sold out, but others are available for £11-£16.
With This Is Hell in full support, hardcore-metallers Deez Nuts promise a show of blazingly loud guts 'n' punk, Aussie-style. The Roadrunner signings have been busy dabbling with members of Bring Me The Horizon on the recent album "This One's For You", combining subtle song-titles like "I Don't Give A Mother F***" with bullish riffs. Tickets cost £9-£10 with further support to be announced for Thursday (Camden Underworld) onwards.
The much-touted nu-folk sound of Smoke Fairies first caught the eye of crooner Richard Hawley (they appeared on his 2010 EP "False Lights From The Land EP"), but now seem to be worming their way into the consciousness of more and more music-lovers - the album "Through Low Light and Trees" lured in a few critics as well. First stop on tour is Tunbridge Wells on Sunday - tickets are around £7.
Tragedy - A Metal Tribute to the Bee Gees
We've mentioned these boys before and now they will finally hit these shores from next Wednesday, when this 'Metal tribute to the Bee Gees' begins its jaunt around the UK with Bristol, followed by Swansea, Birmingham, London and finally Carlisle on the 22nd. Tickets are just £8 for a night of disco-classics getting the full rock treatment.
The cheeky Mock The Weeker is out and about for a few ad-hoc stand-up gigs during the next couple of months, starting with a sold-out stint at London's Tabard Theatre on Sunday. Tickets are still available for Kingston on 24th (£7) and York on 11th Feb (£16).
Leicester Comedy Festival 2011
The LCF turns 18 this year and, to mark the occasion, the city's De Montfort Hall is hosting a pre-Festival show next week on Friday. The evening will feature Kiwi stand-up Jarred Christmas and special guests for the tidy sum of £20.
Celtic Connections 2011
One of the largest world-music and folk-roots festivals kicks off in Glasgow on Thursday, starting with a free torch-lit procession and a rare appearance from percussionist, Zakir Hussain at the Royal Concert Hall. Many tickets are available from the venues at around £20 - highlights include Giant Sand, The Waterboys and Richard Thompson.