No fooling, April is a great month for live music here in Cambridge. Our top pick this month goes to the return of the Cornex:discover series at the Cambridge Corn Exchange and a phenomenal show that’ll strike a chord for anyone who enjoys world music or the music of Morrissey. Mexrrissey: Mexico Goes Morrissey on the 29th consists of a team of musical gunslingers from Mexico’s finest bands who reinvent Morrissey’s songs south of the border. In Mexico, Morrissey has always been a prophet with honour. His songs of love, loss and longing, with powerful imagery and metaphors, find huge audiences and chime with generations raised on rancheras and mariachis, and their singers who were not afraid to cross the line.
dbh is Dan Bridgwood-Hill, a stalwart of the Manchester DIY scene. Commonly found ripping it up in complex geometric-rock groups including Burnst, FTSE 100 and The Nasdaq, he explores his more melodic and contemplative style as a solo guitarist. On the 25th, dbh plays an intimate show here in Cambridge at the CB1 café on Mill Road.
The Portland Arms has a very busy month, kicking off with three local acts playing hometown shows in support of new releases. Brit-rock five-piece Phoenix Calling, who hail from further up the A14, play a show as part of their album-launch tour on the 1st. Cambridge singer-songwriter Tom Copson, who has picked up his fair share of acclaim for his thoughtful lyrics and stunning vocal range, brings his excellent live show home on the 2nd. Electro-folk outfit Keltrix play an album launch on the 3rd for their new record, Between & Beyond Storms.
Damon Krukowski and Naomi Yang’s music career started with modest goals but grew to incorporate one of the most influential bands of the 1980s (Galaxie 500). On the 8th, the duo bring Naomi’s silent film Fortune, with a live soundtrack of 11 new songs, to The Portland.
Released earlier this year, Marika Hackman’s debut full-length release, We Slept At Last, is an assured and intriguing debut album that rewards every listen with new riches. On the 14th Hackman brings her distinctive and brooding take on folk back to The Portland.
Last seen in Cambridge opening for Royal Blood, Bristolian alt-rockers Turbowolf headline The Portland on the 20th as part of their debut album tour. Expect big riffs and a frenzy of tempos. Other Portland highlights this month include emo pop outfit The Xcerts on the 21st, grunge and blues hybrid Ltnt on the 22nd and post-hardcore trio Arcane Roots, who play on the 30th.
Not to be missed this month is Courtney Barnett’s show at the Cambridge Junction on the 7th. Already upgraded to the J1 venue because of high demand, and with a debut LP out last month, it’s difficult to think of any other modern songwriter currently commanding such attention. You’ll love the crunch of guitars and loose groove of her three-man rhythm section.
One of this year’s most tipped bands, Wolf Alice, known for their tendency to flirt with a variety of genres, play Cambridge Junction on the 10th. The show will give fans a chance to get a glimpse at the four-piece’s debut album, which is out later this summer.
Bipolar Sunshine is the Manchester-raised alternative pop sound of Adio Marchant. With an eclectic new-age ambient soundscape and melancholy soulful lyrics, he conjures up the romance of escapism, drawing inspiration from life’s wonders and imperfections and his show at the J2 on the 10th is definitely one to catch.
On April 13th, The Leisure Society release their fourth album, The Fine Art of Hanging On, via Full Time Hobby. The intricate production, arrangements, and broad-ranging instrumentation all indicate an outfit at their purposeful and assured best. The band play the J2 on the 16th.
Other highlights at Cambridge Junction this month include local folk-pop outfit Fred’s House at the J2 on the 23rd, masterful Manchester trio I Am Kloot on the 25th and the return of husband and wife duo Kathryn Roberts and Sean Lakeman on the 26th. Fresh from releasing their third album, Stornoway at the Junction on the 28th is a great way to close a very busy month for live music in Cambridge.
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