I think Birmingham’s Glee Club deserves serious props for the wonderful niche they’ve carved out for themselves in the city. There’s a consistent quality and appeal of the artists booked. The schedule tends to be dominated by folk, country and indie artists but the standard is generally high and the venue so welcoming, that you can usually take a punt on something you don’t know and leave rewarded.
The Low Anthem (9th September)
There’s a little break in proceedings for August, but the lineup for autumn and winter is already looking strong. Here’s some of our highlights:
The Low Anthem
Wednesday 9th September / £6.50 (advance)
Rhode Island trio The Low Anthem are one of the latest Americana acts to take up residence on Bella Union, with the release of second album Oh My God, Charlie Darwin earlier this month.The bands stock in trade tends to be hushed folk songs with rich atmospherics as on first single ‘To Ohio’, but there’s the odd ramshackle rocker thrown in to prevent you slipping fully into a cosy coma.
Joan as Police Woman
Monday 28th September / £11 (advance)
Joan Wasser, backing singer turned indie star, is a performer I feel I should’ve paid more attention to – this show at The Glee is the perfect opportunity to play catch-up. In collaboration with Timo Ellis, she’ll be playing tracks from new, tour-only album Cover, which features interpretations of songs by artists including Sonic Youth, Public Enemy, Britney Spears and Jimi Hendrix, as well as her own original pieces from acclaimed second album To Survive.
Stream: To Be Lonely (at MySpace)
The Felice Brothers
Monday 9th October / £11.50
Raucous roots rockers channeling Dylan and The Band’s sessions at Big Pink through a inebriated haze, hopefully The Felice Brothers will give a performance balancing intoxicating chaos with moments of singalong, oddly affecting beauty.They’re touring new record Yonder is the Clock, the follow up to their self-titled cult hit from last year.
MP3: Frankie’s Gun (from The Felice Brothers) – via Team Love // 4 song Daytrotter Session
Wednesday 4th November / £11 (advance)
American Music Club are possibly some of the most well regarded purveyors of country rock around. There are few voices as distinctive as lead man Eitzel, a performer of incredible emotional range as displayed in plaintive love songs, bitter, theatrical tales of woe and intense rockers. Information on the gig is a little scarce, but it’s safe to assume that he’ll be performing songs from AMC’s post-2003 reunion albums and tracks from his substantial solo career.
Support comes from The Hold Steady’s distinctive keyboardist Franz Nicolay, touring the slightly disappointing ’80s-rock inspired Major General. Saying that, if his solo performance brings even half the energy of his contribution to the world’s favourite bar band, it’ll be worth taking in.
Stream: Another Morning (via Merge Records)
The above is just for starters, I’m sure more will be added to the listings as Summer winds on.