Bass Culture Clash 2013 Tour

This tour celebrates “the influence reggae music and sound systems have had on current UK bass music,” explains creative director Ben Ryan.

“So many artists have been influenced by reggae and Jamaican music, but that’s sometimes lost on bass music fans.”

The RasItes will play live, with some of the UK’s biggest bass music (jungle, hip hop, dancehall) artists – Lady Leshurr (above), MC Skibadee and more – battling over ‘the riddims’. 

March 16, 10pm-6am Plan B, £6+
418 Brixton Road, SW9 7AY  
Tube | Brixton  
ukbassculture.net

Half Moon

The Rolling Stones, The Who, The Sex Pistols, U2 – some of the biggest names in rock have played this iconic little south London venue.

It has a massive line-up of gigs and comedy nights coming up, including SA band Munkinpure (Feb 27) and Huey (below) and the New Yorkers (Mar 19).

See website for show details, £4+ 
93 Lower Richmond Road, SW15 1EU 0
Tube | Putney Bridge 
halfmoon.co.uk

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The Dublin Castle

”If I was an MP, the Dublin Castle would be registered as my second home,” says 6 Music DJ Steve Lamacq of this Camden live venue, such is its place of esteem in the hearts of music fans and the careers of many now-mega-selling artists.

It’s the birthplace of Madness and has seen the likes of Blur, The Killers and Amy Winehouse all take to the stage.

It is no less than an indie-rock institution with four bands playing every night of the week.

Upcoming talents to look out for include indie-popsters Lem and the White Fire (Feb 23) and grunge-rockers Aimless (Feb 25).

See website for show details 
£4+, NW1 7AN  
Tube | Camden Town  
thedublincastle.com

 

The Borderline

On the edge of Soho, this central London venue was a key player in the Nineties and has seen many Britpop and alt-rock acts step through its doors – such as the legendary REM.

Now 21 years old, it’s a small venue (capacity 275) but one of massive importance. Don’t miss techno-rockers Abby (Feb 27). 

See website for show details 
£5+. W1D 4JB  
Tube | Tottenham Court Road  
theborderline.co.uk

 

XOYO

Started in 2010, this east London venue’smade itself a must-visit. Swim Deep (Feb 26) and Alune George (Feb 19) are upcoming highlights.

See website for show details 
EC2A 4AP  
Tube | Old Street  
xoyo.co.uk

 

Notting Hill Arts Club

Arts and music collide in this 12-year-old west London creative space built around the belief that “a world created by artists would be a better place”.

It has regular club nights (indie to grime) and an exhibition space as well as live music.

So get down and see if you agree with their artist-driven view of a better planet. At least the music would be good!

See website for show details 
£6+, W11 3JQ  
Tube | Notting Hill Gate 
nottinghillartsclub.com

 

Read more: Future sounds – Two new music festivals to help you unearth your new favourite band

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Birthdays

Aussie electro-punks Jagwar Ma (Feb 26), former Charlatans frontman-turned-purveyor of dodgy bleached barnets Tim Burgess (above, Feb 21) and Doldrums (Feb 19) are just some of the oustanding acts who are playing this ever-more impressive east London venue.

It’s cool, but not pretentious, mixes the off-kilter with the crowd-pleasing, and is an increasingly important stop on London’s emerging music venue scene. 

£8+, See website for show details N16 8BB  
Station | Dalston Kingsland 
birthdaysdalston.com

The Amersham Arms

South-east London venue that mixes pub atmosphere (and prices) with the best new bands. 

See website for show details 
£5+, SE14 6TY  
Tube | New Cross 
theamershamarms.com

 

The Shacklewell Arms

It was two years ago that this north London establishment opened its doors to live music and it’s now one of the top venues for up-and-coming bands, the kind NME go nuts for – and you will, too.

With gigs almost every night of the week, there’s no shortage of rockstars-in-waiting to assault your eardrums.

TNT faves Shields (Feb 19), Lauren Laverne tip-off Sweet Baboo (Feb 20) and grunge revivalists Arrows of Love (Mar 13) are all coming up in the next three weeks. 

£4+, See website for show details 
71 Shacklewell Lane, E8 2EB  
Station | Dalston Kingsland 
shacklewellarms.com

 

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New Cross Inn

Tucked away in south London’s student heartland, this place has been a long-standing supporter of new music and a hub of the New Cross scene (the likes of Bloc Party, above, spawned from this way back when).

It has live music all week, open mic nights and regular student nights, too.

Best check out techno-dance-punks Sheep On Drugs (Feb 23) and the Romance Fest all-dayer (Feb 24), which is loaded to the brim with great new and local bands. 

£3+, See website for show details SE14 6AS  
Tube | New Cross 
newcrossinn.com

The Barfly

The Strokes, Muse and the Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs – just a handful of the acts who have played this new music-focused venue in north London.

It has gigs on all week long, was voted best new music venue in the NME and regularly hosts single and album launch shows for up-and-coming outfits – indie band Coasts celebrate their new single Oceans with a headline show (Mar 11), punk-rockers The Virginmarys continue their rapid ascent (Mar 6), and Aussies The Jezabels drop in for a very special intimate show, too (Mar 22). 

£4+, see website for show details NW1 8AN  
Tube | Chalk Farm 
barflyclub.com

 

Scala

Once a porno cinema, it’s now a four-floored ‘alternative live music, club and arts’ centre.

Mustn’t miss Melody’s Echo Chamber (Mar 5).

See website for show details 
£5+, N1 9LP  
Tube | King’s Cross  
scala-london.co.uk

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The Windmill

Hidden down a side street and unassuming from the outside, this live venue is one of the bands’, fans’ and music critics’ top choices in the city, boasting a relaxed atmosphere and a reputation for passionately championing original audible art.

Upcoming highlights include Americana-star Caitlin Rose, above (Mar 3), whose debut Own Side Now was a regular on ‘Best of 2010’ lists, acoustic troubadour Dropout Dan (Feb 19) and a weekend with North Star Records.

See website for show details 
£3+, SW2 5BZ  
Tube | Brixton  
windmillbrixton.co.uk 

 

The Lexington

An American vibe permeates from the lounge bar upstairs (it has more than 40 US whiskies to pick from) and there’s a Rough Trade Music Quiz every monday. The live music is diverse, from indie to noise rock to electro.

Don’t miss Portasound (Feb 21) or chamber-poppers Loch Lomond (Feb 24), who hail from Oregon, of course.

See website for show details
£5+, NW1 9JB  
Tube | Angel 
thelexington.co.uk

 

The White Lion 

This south London boozer has live music throughout the week, supports local causes and is the home of kids-supporting charity Music4Children.

Aussie rocker Dallas Frasca played recently, and owner from Down Under Oz is an absolute star.

See website for show details 
3+, SW16 1BB  
Station | Streatham  
whitelion.org.uk

 

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Dingwalls

Grubby, grimy and historic, this north London gig venue has been all about the guitars for 40 years, with a clear focus on the new, left-of-centre,  up-and-coming and those seeking a small room in which to connect with their fans.

The Mumfords played here in their early days and any night of the week you might catch the Pete Doherty of the future.

The Datsuns played here last week, and there’s LA indie-rock duo Deap Vally (above, Feb 26), singer-songwriter Tom Odell and Japanese psych-rockers Bo Ningen (Apr 4) coming soon. 

See website for show details 
£5+, NW1 8AB  
Tube | Camden 
dingwalls.com

 

Nambucca

The Holloways formed at the iconic venue, which has survived changes in fashion and a fire (it reopened in 2010), but it still has the best new bands.

See the Metal To The Masses (from Jun 30) heats for this year’s Bloodstock fest. 

See website for show details 
£4+, N7 6LB  
Tube | Archway  
nambuccalondon.com

 

The Old Blue Last

”The world’s coolest pub” and “the hottest jukebox in Britain” – this is what the NME and The Times think of this east London venue.

There’s no shortage of ace acts on its history books (The Klaxons, We Are Scientists, Mumford & Sons) and with bands and DJs seven nights a week, the chances of catching a superstar-to-be is pretty damn high.

It might be The History of Apple Pie (Feb 19) or Funeral Suits (Mar 6).

See website for show details 
Free, EC2A 3ES  
Station | Shoreditch High Street  
theoldbluelast.com

 

 

Photos: Getty; Kirsten McTernan; Bryan Sheffield

 

Read more: Future sounds – Two new music festivals to help you unearth your new favourite band