The Handbook
The Handbook

If you’re missing sticky floors, cans of Red Stripe and a mass of sweaty bodies swaying to the same beat you’ll be pleased to hear the music scene hasn’t stopped. While the world might be on pause, musicians are joining together to bring tunes from their living rooms into ours. From Instagram DJ sets to Facebook Live cover sessions and a mass Twitter Album listening party, here are the music moments taking place this week…

Tim’s Twitter Listening Party

The premise is very simple: people all over the world listen to an album in full at the same time.

The concept was started by Tim Burgess, who has been hosting online listening parties of records from his own band, The Charlatans, for years. Fellow music fans join him in a front-to-back musical geek-out while commenting on Twitter as the album plays out.

Lockdown has turned the idea into one of 2020’s most iconic music moments as Tim reached out to many of his friends in the industry, starting with Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand. The Libertines, Suede, Ash, Belle & Sebastian, Gomez, Blur, Oasis, The Chemical Brothers, The Flaming Lips and many more have been involved since.

But it is insights from the artists themselves that make these parties so special, sharing never before seen photographs and stories about the making of the record.

A full to bursting upcoming schedule is already in place, with the likes of Maccabees, New Order, British Sea Power, Blossoms, James, Foals, Idles and DMA’s in place next week.

The listening parties take place on Twitter every evening from 5pm onwards and they are a must if you’re missing the gig scene.

Laura Marling Live Set

The ethereal tones of Laura Marling return, albeit virtually, next week as the British singer will be live streaming her new album, Song For Our Daughter on May 3rd.

The conceptual seventh album from the British folk singer is written to an imaginary child about what it means to be a woman in today’s society. Tune in to hear her haunting tones, new tunes and hopefully some of the old classics.

Marling is also hosting live isolation guitar tutorials on her Instagram every Sunday at 7pm if you fancy dusting off the old strings.

 

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Live DJ Set from Carl Waxberg, Housekeeping

If your Ibiza trip has been put on ice, bring the beats of the White Isle direct to your home this weekend. Carl Waxberg, who makes up one part of the DJ collective Housekeeping, is going live on Instagram every Saturday afternoon at 4pm.

He’s actually streaming through his impossibly stylish wife’s account @stephanieaxberg, who has a loyal following as a fashion and travel influencer. He’ll be playing an  eclectic mix of soulful, Balearic and tribal house music.

Carl may be used to appearances at some of the world’s most iconic clubs, bars and festivals from Pacha to Burning Man, Fabric to Café Mambo, but he’s currently bringing the holiday vibes into our homes.

Pray for some sunshine, mix up the margaritas and set your alarm for a 4pm boogie.

Noel Gallagher just dropped an unheard of Oasis tune

Like Christmas Day for Oasis fans, the older, bushier browed Gallagher brother released a new, well old, but never before heard Oasis track last night.

It seems even rock stars use their lockdown time to have a clear out and he found the demo track, titled Don’t Stop, in an old box of CDs at home.

Noel wrote on Twitter “Hey there dudes and dollies. Like the rest of the world, I’ve had infinite time to kill lately so I thought I’d finally look and find out what was actually on the HUNDREDS of faceless unmarked CD’s I’ve got lying around in boxes at home,” he added, “As fate would have it, I have stumbled across an old demo which I thought had been lost forever.”

The brothers had recorded it about 15 years ago in Hong Kong, before the band had officially split but were no doubt already deep in their tumultuous relationship. Either way, with Liam putting on gigs for the NHS and Noel digging out tunes from the Oasis back catalogue, Manchester’s most famous duo is making lockdown much easier.

Listen to the demo for yourself here.

Sofar Sounds Live Streams

Sofar Sounds is the genius initiative that brings upcoming and sometimes established artists into living rooms (literally) and unusual event spaces around the country. But given that we’re all in isolation in our own homes, they’ve taken their product online and will streaming a rota of musicians daily.

Tune in every day to see artists around the world host intimate live performances from their living rooms into yours.

New artists are announced each day at www.sofarsounds.com

Snow Patrol Live Stream & Songwriting Session

Snow Patrol aren’t letting lockdown dampen their mood, these guys have been bringing the music into fans’ homes digitally for the last couple of weeks.

Tonight, Thursday 30th April, they will be going live on Facebook with a selection of covers – who doesn’t love a covers sesh? Followed directly with a live acoustic set on Instagram.

Later in the week frontman Gary will be sharing his musical wisdom with a live song writing session on Instagram on Saturday 2nd May and again the following week.

Janelle Monae Live Set 

Known for her buoyant stage presence, signature suits and psychedelic soul-meets-funk-meets-hip-hop sound, Janelle Monae is sure to keep the lockdown blues at bay.

Tune in tonight, Thursday 30th April, for an intimate live set. She’s streaming on American time though, so you’ll have to stay up until 1am – are Thursdays still the new Fridays even in lockdown?

 

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#bemorealice

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Ben Ottewell

The gravel-voiced singer from Gomez has been posting videos to IGTV of him banging out the classics while his daughter Alice sings along, spins and interprets the songs with her own eclectic dance moves and it is utterly adorable. It’s even spawned the hashtag #bemorealice which we’re fully backing.

Head over to Ben’s Instagram for an instant mood lift.

Elbow’s Elbow Rooms

Headed up by frontman Guy Garvey, the whole of Elbow (we’re talking strings and all) are getting together in their respective homes digitally to share some of their hits with us via YouTube.

They’ve already released hits such as Mirrorball, Great Expectations and Weightless, but check in with their YouTube channel and the hashtag #elbowrooms to see what’s next.

We may all be missing live gigs but who new live music could be this emotive?

Royal Albert Home

One of the world’s most iconic music venues are taking things online under current circumstances as London’s RAH turns into the Royal Albert Home. A little bit of lockdown isn’t going to stop the iconic venue from bringing music to the masses as they put on free live streams of artists from all over the world.

Coming up are Scottish singer KT Tunstall, electronic songstress Imogen Heap and Classical Songs for Kids – something else to add to your home schooling schedule?

Radiohead’s Archive Gigs

Surly rockers Radiohead are releasing a live show from their archives every Thursday at 10pm.

So far they’ve treated us to a 2009 Buenos Aires concert, Berlin in 2016 and live from a tent in Dublin back in 2000. A must-watch for anyone dreading summer 2020 without a music festival in sight.

 

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Christine & The Queens Live Streams

Lady Gaga enlisted Christina & The Queens to be part of the One World: Together At Home concert, which saw the likes of the Rolling Stones, Billie Eilish, Gaga herself, Paul McCartney and Taylor Swift come together in their own homes for the COVID-19 crisis.

Christine has taken her performances to Instagram too, regularly posting live sessions and covers. Head there for a beautifully haunting rendition of Travis Scott’s Highest in the Room.