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The Joy Formidable kicked off their largest UK tour to date in Birmingham’s intimate HMV Institute this October. I was lucky to witness this eccentric up and coming band perform their epic debut ‘The Big Roar’. They opened with their latest single ‘A Heavy Abacus’ and the crowd exploded in cheers and chants as Ritzy tore into her live set. The energy reached fever pitch when the band performed the incredible ‘Ostrich’ from their EP ‘A Balloon Called Moaning’. The excitment carried on for the closing track of their recent album ‘The Greatest Light is The Lightest Shade’ followed by massive hit ‘Cradle’. The mood changed slightly as Ritzy exclaimed it to be ‘nap time’ as the band played unreleased raritie ‘Anemone’ which was a dreamy, chilled break from the brutal moshpits of earlier tracks. With the end of the gig looming, it could be said that the band really saved their A material for the close. The huge ‘I Don’t Wanna See You Like This’ once again created an electric atmosphere, with ‘While The Flies’ following. After a small technical hitch, the band launched into their closer and most successful song ‘Whirring’ an incredible medley of live instrumentals and agressive vocals leaving fans singing along all the way home. This band were incredible to watch, their whole show relies only on their talent in playing their own instruments and writing their own songs. I have no doubt they will go far and I look forward to seeing Ritzy belting out hits such as ‘Austere’ and ‘Magnifying Glass’ on an arena tour in front of thousands.

Greyhounds In The Slips - this little

known song proved to be a huge hit live. The audience may not have known all the words but they supported Ritzy with a wave of cheers nonethless.

Austere -

The first single the band performed sent the excited energy to fever pitch. The audience were screaming along whilst the band exploded on stage. This included a prolonged instrumental whilst the crowd chanted along to the chrorus. Serious fan dedication.

Cradle -

For me this is the stand out track on the album and Ritzy put her all into screaming out the agressive lyrics whilst the crowd clapped along. A truly spectacular to see live.

I Dont Wanna See You Like This One of the best new tracks from the bands incredible debut, a true crowd pleaser. However, the amount of mosh pits that had formed by this point made one wonder who was paying full attention.

Whirring The closing track was the fantastic ‘Whirring’. It acted as the perfect end to a brilliantly bizzare live show. Fans were visibly pleased, leaving the venue still singing.


Critically acclaimed singer/songwriter and headliner of the 2011 NME tour Wolfgang. In 2005 Brandon Flowers brought his band to Birmingham and provided a killer set on the tour.

It was perhaps inevitable that Max McElligott would one day make an ornate pop album of near symphonic grandeur named after a utopian place that came to him in a dream. Now the brains behind the fantastic ‘Suego Faults’ is headlining NME’s prestigious tour at the tender age of 24. One factor that contributed to his love of the symphonic and grand was his violinist mother’s tendency to take her son to concerts as a child where he would watch her play with a full orchestra. “When you’ve seen a symphony orchestra banging out Mozart’s Requiem at full blast, created completely acoustically, that can be rousing, too. Since then Max has learnt to play the piano, the drums and the guitar so there is no chance of this young talent turning to auto tune. His dreamy album has been recieved positively from critics and fans alike, with NME giving it an 8/10 rating which is more than credible for a debut. It’s fair to say Wolfgang will be bringing something very unique to the tour and to Birmingham and we wait with baited breath to witness this talented performer showcase his natural talent.

It’s hard to believe that the Sheffield super group performed as support on the tour in 2006.

NME’s most recent success story has gone on to dominant the UK with their eccentric live show.

AUTUMN 2011 THE JOY FORMIDABLE Thurs 13th October

UK Indie rockers The Joy Formidable bring their eccentric live show to the HMV with support from Creatures Of Love.

MILES KANE Tues 18th October

The genius behind Last of the Shadow Puppets showcases ‘Colour of the Trap’ to his ever growing fanbase.


With his delicate and elegant melodies, catch one of the UK’s most exciting new song writes at the HMV Institute.

ANNA CALVI Fri 4th November

See Anna perform tracks from her mercury prize nominated debut album in Birmingham’s most intimate venue.

WILD BEASTS Thurs 10th November

One of the UK’s most eccentric Indie rock band’s comes to the city this month with new album ‘Smother’.

THE NAKED AND FAMOUS Sat 19th November

This electric band originally from New Zealand bring the incredible ‘Passive Me, Agressive You’ to Birmingham.

FOSTER THE PEOPLE Mon 21st November

The Californian band play ‘Torches’ at the HMV in November, including Summer anthem ‘Pumped Up Kicks’.



0121 643 0428


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