thumbnailIf you were thinking that it is around this time of year that the live gigging circuit goes a bit quiet as bands prepare for the hectic run of Christmas bookings then one look at the list below will show you just how wrong such thoughts are. And it isn’t just the local set out in force either.

Tonight, for example, you can catch Cockney Rejects gracing the stage at Level III. This band pretty much defined the sound of Oi and Street Punk, blending terrace anthems and back street angst into a sound that went on to influence successive waves of bands such as Green Day and Rancid. The perfect support acts come in the form of Charred Hearts and Street Outlaws, so get down there early and catch the whole show.

Rock ’n’ Roll from a slightly earlier era can be found at The Beehive as The Teddy White Band run through their carefully selected set of beat, blues and boogie and at The Victoria you will find folk traditionalists and masters of the stripped down, direct and honest roots sound Splat The Rat.

On Friday Level III has another helping of the loud and anthemic, this time of a more theatrical bent as Hotter Than Hell swing by to relive the glory days of Kiss. They have everything covered from the 70’s heyday — the pyrotechnics, the fire breathing, the stage blood, the make-up, the boots and of course the songs. 

If something a bit more groovesome, slinky and funky is to your taste then Felix and The Funk, the clue is in the name, will be at The Swiss Chalet delivering a set drawn from pop, disco, dance, funk and soul at The Swiss Chalet so make sure that you wear your dancing trousers and The Skandals have a set of two-tone and ska classics to storm The Castle with.

There are also plenty of bands who just aim to get the party going with songs whose only common denominator is that they are classics, fun and well loved. Hooch concentrates on the sound of the nineties, everything from Bobby Brown to Faithless at The Victoria, The Tin Shack band mix and match the music at The Queen’s Tap and Barrelhouse tap into the golden age of Chicago blues as well as the British Blues scene that it helped inspire with a night of heavy blues-rock at The Rolleston.

Garnering songs from across era and genre you will find Double Trouble, the stripped down version of Mojo, at The Moonrakers, W.M.D. at The Windmill and two-piece The Parabolics at The Tap & Barrel.

And if you think that gives you too much choice, just wait until you read through the sheer volume of Saturday’s options.

Rock is well represented, firstly with Shepherds Pie who bring their rock and metal leviathan of a show to The Victoria and plowing similar generic furrows you will find Evolution at The Sun Inn.  The Wirebirds take a more blues based approach at The Prince of Wales in Wootton Bassett and Audio Asylum at The Rolleston finish off the days rock offerings.

At the other extreme, generically speaking, Syntronix bring their synth-pop tribute to The Woodland’s Edge, 80’s classics from the commercial such as Relax and Vienna to the more cultish such as Fade To Grey.

At The Queen’s Tap you will find a soul band with a difference. Forget the usual soul standards and funky fixtures, The Soul Strutters play music for the more discerning music fan so expect the likes of Curtis Mayfield, The Doobie Brothers and Steely Dan as well as a few unexpected genre-hopping moments.

Get Carter bring the best of modern pop, rock and indie to The Swiss Chalet, The Casual Ties cover similar territory at Wroughton’s Check Inn and Indie’d do what it says on the tin at The Cross Key’s in Wootton Bassett. Danger Mouse has all genres covered at The Messenger.

Tuesday is surprisingly busy with healthy slice of progressive rock at The Victoria. Damanek and Southern Empire (pictured)are made up of musicians from many countries and are embarking on their first UK tour together. If that isn’t to your tastes then head along to The Beehive for Sphynx, a glam-pop band from Austin, Texas who have to be seen to be believed.

Wednesday at The Beehive again and you can catch local legends the musical (lunatic) fringe Sex Jazz and their guests for the night, the equally uncategorisable Run Sofa.