October is a colossus month for live music in Cambridge, featuring critically acclaimed names, breakthrough acts of the year, returning favourites and a very special home town show. Our first tip for October is a mysterious duo whose Mercury Prize nominated album was one of the year’s most anticipated debut records. Jungle is based around a core musical duo of lifelong friends known simply as J and T, who expand to a thrilling seven-piece live, and make mesmeric, kaleidoscopic modern soul that’s unmistakably born in the UK but has true global appeal (their Platoon video has already racked up more than four million views). The album was met with widespread critical acclaim when released in the summer and Jungle’s show at the Cambridge Junction on 28 October is not to be missed.
New Jersey’s hazy indie rockers Real Estate play the J2 at Cambridge Junction on the 20th. Earlier this year Real Estate released their third album, Atlas. The most collaborative Real Estate record to date and one of the most acclaimed albums of the year, Atlas was written while cruising through the Arizona desert, during a press conference in Madrid, in a practice room in Greenpoint, Brooklyn and in an attic in the band’s home town of Ridgewood, New Jersey. The Real Estate show on the 20th is given extra appeal by Canadian fuzz-pop quintet Alvvays being confirmed as the support act.
Electronically inclined art-pop quartet Hundred Waters have announced their return to European shores with a 20-date headline tour this autumn. The UK leg of the tour includes a show here in Cambridge, at The Portland Arms on 21 October. The band released their sophomore record earlier this year and it was a triumph which featured increased attention to complex rhythms and lush textures buoyed by Nicole Miglis’s breathtaking, virtuosic vocals.
Also on the 21st, living legend and creator of some of the greatest guitar riffs of all time, Johnny Marr, returns to Cambridge. Marr’s Corn Exchange show coincides with the release of his second solo album Playland earlier in the month. October also sees the return of The Subways to Cambridge. Welwyn Garden City’s finest play The Portland Arms on the 29th.
The band has recently completed work on their fourth album, so expect some new ones to be road-tested alongside their better-known tracks. West Country folk singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Seth Lakeman returns to Cambridge to play the Corn Exchange on 22 October. Lakeman is touring his latest album, Word of Mouth, an album on which he unearthed hidden histories and unsung heroes to commemorate in song from in and around his native Devon and Cornwall.
Nick Mulvey plays a home town show this month, and he has much to celebrate on his return to Cambridge Junction on the 17th. 2014 has seen Mulvey’s mesmerising debut album met with widespread acclaim and a Mercury Prize nomination, and this summer has seen him filling festival tents to bursting point, commanding huge audiences everywhere from Glastonbury’s Pyramid stage to Green Man and Bestival.
Finally, we end with a mention for this year’s Oxjam event. Taking place on Saturday 18 October, Oxjam Cambridge has a whole host of local acts covering a wide variety of different genres playing across five venues along Hills Road and Regent Street in the heart of town, with all profits from the event going to Oxfam.