2010 already looks like it’s shaping up to be a great year for music in Manchester with some exciting early gig announcements. Marina & The Diamonds who, recently appeared in the BBC‘s ‘Sound of 2010’ poll, play at The Deaf Institute on Sunday 21st February. Earlier that week and in the same venue, Manchester based American songstress Jesca Hoop performs. Jesca’s previous jobs include being a Nanny to Tom Waits’ children! Just the chance of catching a faint whiff of the gravel-throated Messiah’s boot-polish is enough to persuade BagThing to attend her biggest UK show to date.

Band on the Wall ends January strongly with Aftershock International on the 30th. Directed by Nitin Sawhney, the project is a unique musical collaboration between an internationally assembled group of new risings artists including local favourites Denis Jones and Matt Halsall. Oceansize perform their unique brand of ‘progressive death indie’ at Academy 3 on the 2nd February and related project Kong play The Ruby Lounge on the 28th. If, like BagThing, you’re a fan of wonky bleeps and fat beats then both Ivan Smagghe at Naive Melody on January 29th and Danish electronic pioneer Trentemoller   at Sankeys on the following weekend will be hard to beat. Pineapple Folk and Now Wave warm up our winter chill with the sultry sounds of Beach House at Islington Mill on the 11th and Wotgodforgot bring US experimentalists Tune-Yards to The Ruby Lounge on Saturday 13th.

Manchester Cathedral is the choice venue for two great shows in March; The Magnetic Fields play their first Manchester date for 4 years on the 19th and Tindersticks on the 23rd. Wotgodforgot have also just announced that Krautrock legends Faust will be gracing the Ruby Lounge stage on May 12th; some time away but certainly unmissable!

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