It won’t have escaped your attentions that the Olympics is now in full flow, usurped only by the self-proclaimed ‘best league in the world’ Premier League’s circus redoing its rounds. They’re not offering much in terms of tunefulness though, unless you’re into grunts, howls of pain and shrieks of joy, and if you’re not into Olympics records’ repetition of uplifting ear-candy by Katy Perry et al or dire nationalist anthem dirges, we have a few options up our sleeves in the form of Manchester’s gigging winners this week.

Music to some people’s ears will be the study of unsporting socio-political behaviour that JD Taylor captures in his new book, Island Story. A talk and discussion will ensue at Friends’ Meeting House on Mount Street as part of his book launch tour (on his bike), organised by Social Science Centre and Manchester Left Writers for Monday 15th.

Less talking and more action on Tuesday 16th, when Texan indie folk siblings The Oh Hellos greet an audience at Deaf Institute.

After announcing an indefinite hiatus early this year, teeny rockers Motion City Soundtrack‘s show at The Ritz on Wednesday 17th is akin to a testimonial match as they bid farewell for now.

Speaking of hiatuses, Miracle Legion‘s revival after 20 years apart is surely one of the longest indefinite separations in music to rekindle. The band named among Thom Yorke’s faves head to Deaf Institute on Thursday 18th. Or if you value more highly the spoken word’s worth, the Castle Hotel is hosting this month’s Verse Case Scenario.

There are plenty of runners in the race for your attention on Friday 19th: Scruff Of The Neck Records’ showcase at Gullivers features Bright Young People at the top of the pile; Fat Out’s Burrow drops Anchorsong‘s minimalist sampling orchestra vibes of glocks and glitches at Islington Mill; Soup Kitchen celebrate six (!) years of live music with a free live bill of three rising stars – Aldous RH, Mother and Akranes; and the eternal Olympic flame keeps burning for Ultimate Power, fueling the Ritz with power ballads all night long.

This year’s Great Northern Ska Festival is bringing together a glut of good vibes at Bowlers Exhibition Centre on Saturday 20th. The 12-hour marathon will see Neville Staple, The Beat, Baked A La Ska, The Selecter and many more.

Local funky rockers The Winachi Tribe have new material lined up to release this month, tying in nicely with their Gorilla gig the same night.

Towards the finishing line, Stockport Art Gallery is the destination on Sunday 21st for a local showcase staged by the Rising Stars community group. Workshops run from 5.15pm, before live music by funky soul gang Family Ranks, singer songwriter Sarah De Warren and a handful of others.

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