You must have seen already, on more than a few red buses, that Bon Jovi are coming to town (shoot, and I lost the Bon Jovi - The Boys Are Back T-shirt I wore in high-school...). Given my lack of money and patience to wait until July (if by now you don't know I'm kidding, here it is - I'm kidding), I decided to focus on a handful of less glamorous shindigs that will rattle and shake London in the next couple of months. If not due to the crowds swarming, at least thanks to their daring palette of temperamental post punk and whip-smart electronica.
www.savagesband.com), evoking most notably Siouxsie Sioux, The Pop Group and Joy Division, are sure worth it; but nothing will convince you more than a live soundwave of all-embracing power, sexuality, fury and darkness. Them and Skinny Girl Diet (another irresistibly menacing young quartet, only a lot rougher around the edges) are the coolest all-girl ensembles I've seen in longer than a while.
Pioneers of Electronic Music (6-17/3/13, various venues) Nonclassical, a music label with a knack for both musically and mentally tantalizing events, got into quite some trouble to put together an 11-day electronic extravaganza that uncovers the "mavericks, machines, heroes and heroines that helped shape modern music". Keep your eyes and ears open for new additions and updates (www.nonclassical.co.uk), that will come to enhance an already multifaceted agenda of live music, talks, workshops, film and dj sets. Build your own synthesizer (in the Dirty Electronics Synth Lab), follow the life and times of great American innovator Raymond Scott (in the documentary Deconstructing Dad), join Varese and Stockhausen (in spirit, at least), as well as a 30-strong electronic ensemble for some visionary music at Xoyo. If you 're into electronic invention, there will never be a dull moment in this festival.
Mouth to Mouth (4/4/13, Koko) Apart from giving us the mind-blowing The Seer, the past year, Swans' Michael Gira concocted this refreshingly heterogeneous festival, which he will headline along with his team of musically manic friends. A first one for Gira, who aspired at an eclectic bouquet of cinematic dreamers, ambient experimentalists and relentless noise-makers that can challenge and broaden our sonic spectrum. Hence the line-up that sees Mercury Rev's Cinematic Silent Sound Tettix Wave Ensemble, Ben Frost, Xiu Xiu and Grouper follow Swans' lead, in a much anticipated event that both Gira and i hope we'll see for a few years to come.
The Soft Moon (16/4/13, O2 Academy Islington) More post punk coming our way, this time by an all-boy San Franciscan quintet, more electronically-oriented and charmingly autistic than that of our above savage girlfriends. The seductive darkwave chords, experimentation and imagery are definitely there, as are the old familiar synths, but these guys also leave space for some forward-thinking electro-twists. Check out a bunch of gorgeously avant garde videos at www.thesoftmoon.com in preparation.
I'll Be Your Mirror (4/5/13, Ally Pally) Always an event of stature for the idiosyncratic, guitar-loving music adventurer, this year's I'll Be Your Mirror is curated by arty disco screamers Yeah Yeah Yeahs, a few days after their long-anticipated fourth album Mosquito hits the stalls. The sex beat will be high - with the usual crazy antics and outfits of Karen O, the blues cannibalism of Jon Spencer and his Blues Explosion and the smooth eroticism of Dirty Beaches. Among the rest of the guests (The Field, Anika, King Khan & The Shrines), my own personal highlight is former Bad Seed Mick Harvey performing the music of top French provocateur Serge Gainsbourg. Though at this price (£ 64.90 with the fees, mind you) I'll have to drop all of the above in order to attend. Well, I can live without the Yeah Yeah Yeahs... I do feel a little twinge about missing Mr Spencer. But I could never, ever miss a sonic avalanche by the likes of Michael Gira.
Text by Danai Molocha, photography borrowed from the kind users of the web.