12032792_889717027763398_6926717901493668994_oMaybe we have to get away from this idea that important and impressive musical events can only take place in more revered places – New England coffee shops or Camden venues, in large stadiums or within media defined scenes. Good music takes place in town every week; you just have to know where to look. In the last month I have witnessed blistering, national circuit alt-rock; underground, gothic pop and ranting music and poetry from a stalwart 35 years into his career. I have also watched and hung out with a charming satirical, agit-folk performer and the icing on the cake was watching two iconic songwriters who helped define the sound of the early days of indie, pair up and deliver music that was nothing short of gorgeous. All in Swindon and it was all free. Beer may be expensive but do you feel the desire to get out of your face on premium lager when you go to the cinema or theatre? No, so why is the price of beer used as an argument against live music. The music is already out there; all it needs is your support.

Starting with a nice and chilled offering to get you into the mood for the weekend, Songs of Praise at The Victoria has a lovely, seated and relaxed, roots-folk line up for you. The Southern Harmony is a bit of a super group with members of Bateleurs and Missing Rosie within their ranks and trading in driven folk, Americana vibes and sweet vocal harmonies. The wonderfully named Edd Donovan and The Wandering Moles push similar influences into pastures new as a wonderful example of what modern folk music can be and opening the night is folk-pop pixie, Tamsin Quin.

If a mercurial blend of jazz-rock licks, fluent, floating bass lines, nuanced beats and a accessible Zappa-esque vibe sounds more your style then The Beehive has exactly what you need with the long overdue return of Port Erin.

Straight out Southern Rock can be found at The Rolleston on Friday as Sons of Liberty pay tribute to the classic guitar, boogie beats and bourbon fuelled sounds of bands such as Skynard, Molly Hatchet and the much under-appreciated Blackfoot. A bluesier slant is taken by The Greasy Slicks (pictured) who channel the spirit of bands such as Cream and Peter Green era Fleetwood Mac, freshen it up and repackage it for a modern audience. You will find them down at The Locomotive playing along side two-piece blues-rockers The Harlers.

The Teddy White Band can be found at The Victoria delivering soulful, beat, boogie and blues wrought of expert musicianship and exquisite harmonies whilst, the ever shifting, musically subversive and lyrically intriguing auralcandy are at The Beehive.

At The Castle you will find something wonderfully cinematic and altogether more ethereal. White Lilac sound like they are a long lost band from the 80’s output of 4AD. Dreamlike yet intense, dark yet melodic, fragile yet powerful, they are a band of contradiction, extremes and above all sheer beauty. Support comes from Familiars who follow a similar piano driven line.
And in the “if you’re a fan of that you’ll like this” department at The Locomotive on Saturday you will find Polar Front, a band trading in those same seemingly opposing properties, the same blend of grace and grandeur, light and shade.

At Riffs Bar something a bit special is on the cards as a whole day of music is devoted to The Little Big Green Festival, a n array of food, music and workshops to raise awareness for climate change. Bands include The Shudders, The Thrill, Worried About Mike and a lot more. Check out their on-line event page for full details.

Fan’s of neo-prog will want to note that celebrating the 30th anniversary of the album Misplaced Childhood, Still Marillion will be playing it in full at The Victoria. Incendiary blues-rock is on the cards at The Rolleston with Innes Sibun and Jim Reynolds will be bringing the long lost sounds of ragtime, blues and music hall to life at The Beehive. Blues again at The Rolleston for the Sunday lunchtime session with local legend, Bob Bowles.

The mid week slot at The Roaring Donkey sees Jake Martin back in town for more punky acoustic folk music plus some quieter vibes from Steve Millard opening the show. (That’s unless you are at The Oasis watching Will Young!)