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Your guide to the top music festivals, gigs and club shows.

BT River of Music

Featuring six stages stretching the length of the Thames in the city, this ambitious festival of sound and performance gives each of those stages a ‘continent of the world’ theme to create a truly eclectic, eccentric and globe-spanning experience.

Part of the London Festival 2012, the River Of Music showcases an Asia stage in Battersea Park; a Europe stage in Somerset House and Trafalgar Square; an Americas stage in the Tower of London; an Oceania stage at the Old Royal Navy College in Greenwich; and an Africa stage at the London Pleasure Gardens.

The Africa stage features a hugely diverse line-up of talent, such as The Noisettes, ace guitarist Justin Adams and veteran singer Angelique Kidjo, who has a full backing band to complement her staggering vocal performance.

Soul queen Beverley Knight, alongside saxophonist Andy Sheppard, Jools Holland And His Rhythm And Blues Orchestra and Guillemots frontman Fyfe Dangerfield take to the European stage.

Folk-meets-alt-sters 9Bach, choral collective Coastal Voices and Australian muso Frank Yamma represent the Oceania stage, with the likes of Indian tabla player Zahir Hussein and Pakistani qawwali sensation Asif Ali Khan among the wealth of talent drawn from across Asia for its representative stage.

New York glam-poppers Scissor Sisters (above), back this year with their fourth LP, Magic Hour, bring their glam-electro-pop to the Americas stage. Jazz legend Wynton Marsalis also performs.

Plus, it’s all part of the Olympics celebrations and all free. No excuses.

Various venues across the city
July 21-22 | Doors at 11am | Frree (registration required)

Reading Festival

The rock and indie blowout to the end of festival season, this bank holiday weekend extravaganza has, over the course of its history, welcomed Metallica, Nirvana and Smashing Pumpkins to its stages.

This year, it’s the turn of the nicest guy in rock, Dave Grohl, and his Foo Fighters to close out the Sunday night, with Kasabian headlining Saturday and The Cure bringing their goth-indie-pop to Friday night. Rock on!

Richfield Avenue, Reading, RG1 8BD.
£197.50. Aug 24-26.
Station | Reading


Gig: Blink 182

They started starring naked with porn stars in their videos, and singing songs called Dick Lips. Now, though, back from a hiatus that saw them work on various other projects, the boys are men, with loftier lyrical themes and their punk roots infused with an emo-styled sensibility, and new album Neighborhood, too.

Brixton Academy
July 25-26. 7pm. £35 
211 Stockwell Road, SW9 9SL
Tube | Brixton


Club: Sneaky Sound System

Following the release of their critically lauded third LP, From Here To Anywhere, Aussie dance duo singer Miss Connie Mitchell and producing partner in crime Black Angus McDonald hit town for a night of electro-house-pop. They’ve a number of yet-to-be-announced special guests in tow, too. 

Sat, July 21. 10pm-6am £10
Electric Brixton
Town Hall Parade, SW2 1RJ
Tube | Brixton |




London Sound: Scissor Sisters, Dave Grohl and Blink 182 among the hottest music gigs this week
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