Words by Ian Pennington

It’s Glasto week, so a lot of the big guns are back in the holster preparing to fire within the festival’s well-guarded bounds. Their security employees have been trained to direct ticketholders’ urination habits and threaten festival closure for sprinkling the plants with unholy water. Here at Bag Thing we’re more of a gentle pointer so you’re not left pissing in the wind when it comes to Manchester’s live calendar. The band exodus to Worthy Farm presents a great opportunity to sample some of the smaller shows around the city, featuring local bands you’ve been meaning to see or those that could be worth a punt.

Tonight, Monday 22nd we return to a recently formed yet reliable spoken word night, Verbose. James, Scott and Tom from fellow lit lovers the Other Room are the special guest performers and the venue hosting it is Fallow Café.

We’ve not signposted a quiz before, but the launch of a music-themed mind-stretcher at Mono in Chorlton looks a fine one for gig-goers on a day off from the real thing. It goes by ‘Mog’s Mono Music Quiz’ and also takes place at Fred’s Ale House in Levenshulme every Monday. Round one in Chorlton begins on Tuesday 23rd.

Not all the big guns are holstered this week. The alt-rock avant guardians behind the South Park intro music, Primus, shoot from the hip at Apollo on Wednesday 24th.

On Thursday 25th, Virginian song writer Natalie Prass steers her debut LP tour towards Deaf Institute.

Now for two of those local shows I hinted at earlier. First on Friday 26th, at Antwerp Mansion you’ll find a Pinkdot and Nuusic curated line-up of hip hop, grime, dancehall and reggae. Blah Records supply the big names – including Herrotics and Lee Scott – while TNC are among the supports.

Further down Wilmslow Road that day, a psych-folk showcase at Fuel sees Johnny Sly headlining, with Oh Man, The Mountain, The Yossarians’ Captain Zeeburg and minimalist guitarist Heidi Virginia Dewhirst all warming up.

Into the weekend, on Saturday 27th Soup Kitchen serves up some booty-shakin’ rhetoric at You Dig?, containing the flavours of disco, Latin, soul and funk.

Before we leave you for another week, there’s one at 10-year-old Odd Bar on Sunday 28th. Local alt-folk label Crowfoot Records have compiled a first rate line-up all for free. C Joynes is the heartily recommended headliner, dbh’s finger picked virtuosity is always a treat, and Douga supply the soundtrack on the ones and twos.

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