10 great bands to see live in winter 2017

If you’ve been following alternative music news as closely as I have, you’ll know that there are some awesome bands set to play UK tours towards the end of this year.  Today I thought I’d run through some of these upcoming live dates, whether I’m planning on attending one of the gigs or just wish I could.

New Found Glory – September/October 2017, dates here

Pop punk legends New Found Glory, who are celebrating the band’s 20th year, will be visiting our shores in September/October of this year.  Their latest record was released in April, so it will be exciting for fans to hear some of those newer tracks live alongside older classics.

Metallica – October 2017, dates here

Metal giants Metallica will be returning to UK shores this October, but alas, the general sale for all of their dates have already sold out.  Bad luck to everyone who missed out!

Enter Shikari – November 2017, dates here

I already covered the news of Enter Shikari’s upcoming UK tour last month, but I had to include them in this round-up because their line-up is absolutely fantastic.  Lower Than Atlantis put on a great show, and Astroid Boys are an innovative up-and-coming band, so I’m certain this tour will be one to remember.  I’ve already seen Enter Shikari live four times, and their performances are always incredible, so I’d love to make it five in November at the Nottingham Motorpoint Arena.

Royal Blood – November 2017, dates here

Royal Blood will be performing their first ever headline arena dates this year, and I can’t wait to see them fill the huge venues with their awesome sound.  The band recently announced At The Drive In and Black Honey as their support acts, so I’m certain these dates will not disappoint.

Alice Cooper – November 2017, dates here

Rock ‘n’ roll giant Alice Cooper will be bringing his incredible live performances and stage shows back to the UK in November of this year.  If you attend one of his gigs, it’s certain to be a night you won’t forget in a hurry.

PVRIS, November 2017, dates here

PVRIS are set to release their upcoming second album, All We Know Of Heaven, All We Need Of Hell in August, and a few months later they’ll be celebrating its release with a short run of UK dates.

Good Charlotte – November/December 2017, dates here

Good Charlotte’s latest album, Youth Authority, got a decent write-up here on altrocklife, so it would be awesome to see the band perform some of their new tracks live.  Plus, let’s be real, this band are pop punk legends, and it would be a nostalgia-filled trip to the past to see Good Charlotte perform live.

The Kooks – November/December 2017, dates here

Pop rock legends The Kooks are doing a Best Of tour at the end of this year, and it would be awesome to see them live.  Most people I know grew up listening to The Kooks, so I’m sure it would be fantastic to see them perform their greatest hits.

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes – December 2017, dates here

Everyone who’s seen The Rattlesnakes live know that this group put on an incredible show, and I’m extremely lucky to have already bought my ticket to see them in Nottingham on December 6th.  It’ll be my first time seeing The Rattlesnakes, and long term readers of altrocklife will know how long I’ve been waiting to see this band.  If you’ve got the opportunity to see them live, you’ll regret it if you don’t take it.

Marilyn Manson – December 2017, dates here

Marilyn Manson is one of the most infamous musicians on the scene, with a solid fanbase built over the past 20+ years.  You’d have to be pretty lucky to catch him during this short string of UK dates.


Have you got tickets for any of these tours?  Let me know on my Facebook or Twitter page, or in the comment section below this post.

News: Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes announces December UK tour

Anyone who has been following Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes since their inception in 2015 will know that this band isn’t one to rest on its laurels.  The band wrapped up their latest UK tour on March 31st, which saw them hit up 12 venues across the United Kingdom.  Now a new tour has been announced only three days later via the band’s Facebook page, and anyone who missed out on their last sold out tour simply needs to attend this one.

This upcoming Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes tour will be shorter than its March predecessor, hitting up seven dates in England and Scotland, but this time the venues will have a bigger capacity.  I’m super excited to see the band begin to fill larger venues with their incredible atmosphere and excellent live performances.  Tickets go on sale tomorrow at 10am, and I’ll be setting my alarm clock to make sure I get my ticket for the Nottingham Rock City date.  The fact that I haven’t been able to see the band live yet is a major disappointment to me, so there’s no way I’ll be missing them play at one of my favourite venues.

Here’s a list of the tour dates – if there’s a date near you, or even if there isn’t, you definitely do not want to miss this tour.

  • 1/12 – O2 Academy, Bristol
  • 2/12 – O2 Institute, Birmingham
  • 3/12 – O2 Ritz, Manchester
  • 5/12 – O2 ABC, Glasgow
  • 6/12 – Rock City, Nottingham
  • 7/12 – UEA, Norwich
  • 8/12 – O2 Academy, Brixton

Did you see Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes on their March tour, or are you planning on seeing them in December?  Let me know on my Facebook or Twitter page, or in the comment section below this post.

News: Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes announces UK tour support, sells out all dates

Today Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes made a pretty big announcement about their upcoming UK and Ireland tour: with two weeks to go until the tour commences, every single date has sold out!  This is no massive surprise to fans of the band, as FC&TR have had a knack for selling out gigs and shows ever since their formation back in 2015.  However to sell out an entire tour is no mean feat, especially considering their last UK tour was only in November of last year, as well as a smattering of small shows to celebrate Modern Ruin‘s release in January.

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Plus, yesterday the band announced the support for the upcoming 12-date tour.  First up is the awesome Yonaka, a female fronted alternative rock band with an awesome punk vibe, who’ll be joining FC&TR throughout the entire tour.

Second is Strange Bones, who have an incredible grungy punk sound, and to me sound like the love child of FC&TR and my favourite Brit punks, Slaves.  They’ll be playing every date except for those in Ireland: sorry, Belfast and Dublin!

To make up for the loss of Strange Bones, Fangclub will be playing the Irish dates, and the garage rock trio are sure to get the audience hyped up.

This is a really strong selection of support acts, and kudos to Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes for bringing lesser known bands along on their tour.  Unfortunately I am unable to attend any of the dates on this tour, so know that I am eternally envious of everyone who’ll be seeing FC&TR live this month.  The combination of their explosive live performances, plus awesome support acts and packed out venues, is sure to lead to one hell of a tour.


Are you seeing Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes live this month?  What tracks are you looking forward to hearing live? Let me know on my Facebook or Twitter page, or in the comment section below this post.

Review: Modern Ruin

This Friday, punk legend Frank Carter returned with a new release from his band, Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes.  Their debut LP, Blossom, was one of my favourite albums of 2015, and even before then I’ve followed Frank Carter’s career since his days as the front man of UK punk band Gallows.  Anyone who’s followed altrocklife for any length of time probably will have realised how much I love this man’s work, so you can bet I have huge expectations for the latest album, Modern Ruin.  Promotion for the record kicked off with the single Snake Eyes all the way back in June of last year, and you can watch the provocative music video here:

Now to the album.  Modern Ruin kicks off with the acoustic track Bluebelle, named after his frankly gorgeous pet dog.  The pace picks up with Lullaby, with its bass led verses and Frank’s signature voice belting out the chorus.  Just after hearing the first two tracks, one named after a pet and the other written about Frank looking after his daughter Mercy when she was ill, makes it obvious that Frank’s love for his family is a significant theme of Modern Ruin.  This is a nice shift in pace from The Rattlesnakes’ previous record, which featured tracks overflowing with hate and anger.

Already this record is much more melodic than their previous effort: Frank still uses screams and harsh vocals for effect, but they are much less frequent in Modern Ruin than they were in Blossom, especially in the verses.  This is pretty evident in track Vampires, which is much heavier on harmonised backing vocals than previous songs.  Does this make Frank Carter And The Rattlesnakes any less punk?  Arguably not: Modern Ruin still has the same attitude as its predecessor, but it’s definitely the more mature and refined album of the two.

One of my highlights of the record is the riff heavy outro of God Is My Friend, followed by the explosive 56 second long Jackals.  Guitarist Dean Richardson and drummer Gareth Grover are forces to be reckoned with, and their performances on this album are outstanding.  Each track is a perfectly wrapped parcel, which gets its message across in a succinct and punchy way.  For me, the most aggressive track is the title track, full of harsh vocals and incredible riffs, and its intro reminds me slightly of Paradise from their previous record.

If anyone was expecting an identical copy of Blossoms in The Rattlesnakes’ latest release, they were totally off the mark.  One thing I know about Frank Carter, following his career from classic punk band Gallows, to Brit-rock duo Pure Love, and now to The Rattlesnakes, is that the man is anything but predictable. He makes exactly the music he wants to make, rather than what is expected of him, and that falls under my definition of punk pretty nicely.  I absolutely cannot wait for my preordered Modern Ruin book to arrive, so I can flick through all of the behind-the-scenes photos, and get the CD in my car pronto.  Even though it’s only January, I can already tell that this record will be a serious contender for the best album of 2017, because it’s absolutely blown me away.

Highlights: Snake Eyes, Vampires, Acid Veins, Thunder, Neon Rust

News: First half of 2017 ram-packed with fantastic UK tours

For those of you, like myself, who enjoy attending concerts, the first half of 2017 is set to be an amazing few months of live music.  These acts are absolutely fantastic, so if you manage to get tickets for a few of these tours your bank balance could end up being in serious trouble. Today I decided to round up some of the best tours coming up next year.

January 2017 – Avenged Sevenfold, dates here

This tour is the only tour on my list which I already have tickets for, and I am extremely excited to be able to see Avenged Sevenfold for the second time.  I’ll be attending the Nottingham date, and although I was already looking forward to the date, my excitement pretty much quadrupled after reviewing the band’s latest album, The Stage.

January 2017 – The Pretty Reckless, dates here

After reviewing the band’s latest record Who You Selling Formy love for The Pretty Reckless has seriously increased.  I’m hoping to be able to attend their Nottingham date on January 19th, because it promises to be a fantastic night.

February 2017 – Deaf Havana, dates here

I’ve seen these guys perform twice and I thoroughly enjoyed myself both times, so I’d love to make it a hat trick.  Again, I’d probably have to make the journey to London to catch these guys live, but it would be worth it!

February 2017 – Kings Of Leon, dates here

I’m really excited at the prospect of seeing Kings Of Leon live, considering how long I’ve been a fan of theirs.  Even if you weren’t a massive fan of their last two albums, their great live performances would make attending one of their shows worth it.

March 2017 – Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes, dates here

Not wanting to rest on their laurels for too long, even though The Rattlesnakes have only just finished up a string of UK tour dates, the band announced this week that they’ll be touring yet again next March.  I’m gutted that they haven’t announced a Nottingham date, but I’m willing to make the trek to London to see these guys perform live.

March/April 2017 – Mallory Knox, dates here

I’ve been a big fan of Mallory Knox since their first mainstream success, and I really enjoyed seeing them perform live at Leeds Festival in 2014.  Unfortunately I haven’t had the opportunity to see them live again since, so I’m hoping I’ll be able to attend either the Cambridge, or one of the London dates.  Plus, Lonely The Brave is one of their support acts, and I’d love to see them perform live again too.

March/April 2017 – Pulled Apart By Horses, dates here

Even though I’m a fan of this band, I have yet to see Pulled Apart By Horses live, so it would be great to see them next year.

April 2017 – You Me At Six, dates here

I really enjoyed You Me At Six’s latest single, Night People, so I’d really like to see them perform it live next year.  Plus, I’ve been a fan of the band for a long time, so it would be great to hear them perform some older songs alongside the new on tour.

Are you attending any of these tours?  Are there any other awesome tours planned for 2017 that I missed off this list? Let me know your thoughts on my Facebook or Twitter page, or in the comment section below this post.

8 incredible tracks you need in your life – September 2016

September has been a massive month for album releases, with albums by Twin Atlantic, A Day To Remember, Young Guns, Of Mice & Men and Against Me! already out, and records by Slaves and Yellowcard are due out tomorrow.  Has the market for singles been just as good?  Today I take a look back at the best singles of September.

Frank Carter And The Rattlesnakes – Lullaby

This fantastic track was accompanied by news of the band’s next album, due out next January.  Lullaby is a great indicator for things to come.

Kings Of Leon – Waste A Moment

The Tennessee rock band are back with another lighthearted track, with indie and country influences similar in tone to their previous album, Mechanical Bull.  

Taking Back Sunday – Death Wolf

Following a slow-burning introduction with cute synthy elements which are replicated throughout the track, punk-rockers Taking Back Sunday have released a fab new song from their recent album, Tidal Wave.

Sum 41 – God Save Us All (Death To POP)

Sum 41 have well and truly stuck their middle finger up in the direction of mainstream popular music with this track and music video.  Whilst I don’t think pop music is the great evil it’s sometimes portrayed as by alternative bands, you can’t deny that this single is a banger.

Green Day – Still Breathing

The latest track from the upcoming Green Day album Revolution Radio is here, and it’s a slower, more reflective track with an explosive high-impact chorus.  I reckon this track will be the 21 Guns of the new record.

Twenty One Pilots – Cancer (Cover of My Chemical Romance)

Rock Sound recently released a covers album celebrating 10 years since the release of My Chemical Romance’s The Black Parade. I honestly thought most of the covers were terrible, but Twenty One Pilots took an iconic, much loved track and made it 100 per cent their own.

Slaves ft. Mike D. – Consume Or Be Consumed

The latest Slaves single is everything I hoped it would be: loud unapologetic punk with brilliant tongue-in-cheek lyrics and a chorus which will be very easy to headbang along to.  The feature by Mike D. fits perfectly within the track.

Memphis May Fire ft. Jacoby Shaddix – This Light I Hold

Papa Roach’s vocalist Jacoby makes a brilliant addition to Memphis May Fire’s usual brand of religious-themed metalcore. His and Matty’s vocals work extremely well together, and whilst I wasn’t hugely excited for new Memphis May Fire music before, I am now.

What do you think of these tracks? Are there any singles I missed off this list? Let me know on my Facebook or Twitter page, or in the comment section below this post.

News: Frank Carter And The Rattlesnakes announce UK tour

Anyone who knows me knows that I am a massive fan of everything Frank Carter puts his name to. From Gallows, to Pure Love, and now to Frank Carter And The Rattlesnakes, in my eyes this man can do no wrong.  I honestly have to restrain myself every time I write about one of his musical ventures just in case I sound too much like a rabid fangirl.

The band celebrated the first birthday of their debut album, Blossom, last Sunday: if you still haven’t heard this record, you can check out my review here.  They’ve been headlining gigs and playing festivals across Europe this summer, that is until Frank majorly messed up his back in Berlin.  You can see his Facebook post about the incident here.

Even though Frank’s back ended up so messed up the band had to cancel a handful of festival appearances, I’m certain that he’ll be back at full strength in time for their November UK tour, announced on Monday.  Unfortunately it looks like I won’t be able to attend: I’m in Bournemouth for my graduation on the Nottingham date, but I leave Bournemouth before the band play The Winchester. Needless to say, I’m absolutely gutted at missing out on another chance to see this fantastic band live.  Here are the tour dates: hopefully you’ll be more fortunate than myself and be able to attend your nearest date!  Tickets go on sale tomorrow morning from 10am.

  • 2/11 – Gorilla, Manchester
  • 3/11 – Bongo Club, Edinburgh
  • 4/11 – Tunnels, Aberdeen
  • 6/11 – Rescue Rooms, Nottingham
  • 7/11 – Key Club, Leeds
  • 8/11 – Fleece, Bristol
  • 10/11- Electric Ballroom, London
  • 11/11 – The Winchester, Bournemouth
  • 13/11 – The Bullingdon, Oxford
  • 14/11 – Concorde 2, Brighton
  • 15/11 – Slade Rooms, Wolverhampton

The band will also be playing at Reading & Leeds Festivals later this month, but if you’re still unsure about whether to attend, you’ll have to choose Leeds as Reading has sold out!

Are you excited for Frank Carter And The Rattlesnakes’ upcoming tour? Are you planning to attend any of the above dates? Let me know your thoughts on my Facebook or Twitter page, or in the comment section below this post.

News: Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes release provocative new video

Following the release of their 2015 debut album Blossom, Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes have returned with a brand new single, Snake Eyes.  The track is slightly different to previous tracks and shows clear evolution in the band’s sound.  It’s a little slower paced than previous tracks, but still has Frank Carter’s trademark great lyrics.

When the band released the video I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect.  I knew that The Rattlesnakes had some sort of trick up their sleeve, considering previews of the video shared on their Facebook and Instagram looked pretty normal to me.  However the last minute or so of the video heralded a plot twist I certainly couldn’t have predicted.

You can watch the video here.  Let me know what you think: did you predict the plot twist?

Plus, the release of the new track leads to some interesting questions about future Rattlesnakes releases.  Does Snake Eyes mean there’s a new album on the horizon? I certainly hope so, because Blossom was one of my favourite albums of 2015 and a follow-up would be fantastic.

Either way, the Rattlesnakes are a busy band.  They’ll be touring Europe in October, plus they just played Download Festival and will be performing at Reading and Leeds this August.  All in all, it’s clear to me that these guys are leading a punk revival, and I’ll be closely watching where the band goes next.

News: Radio 1 Rock All Dayer takes over the airwaves

Today, the usually pop-oriented BBC Radio 1 have been taken over by rock and alternative music.  So far Twin Atlantic joined Nick Grimshaw on the breakfast show, blink-182 played an acoustic set in the Live Lounge with Clara Amfo, All Time Low hung out with Scott Mills, and Neck Deep were due to join Greg James on the air from 5pm.

This evening Daniel P Carter’s rock show will be joined by co-host Annie Mac and taken over by seven bands performing live sets.  The show is set to be absolutely fantastic; check out the line-up:

7pm – Moose Blood

7:25pm – Against The Current

7:45pm – blink-182

8:05pm – A Day To Remember

8:40pm – Creeper

9:05pm – Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes

9:35pm – Asking Alexandria

The line-up is pretty diverse, ranging from pop-punk to post-hardcore to punk and plenty in between.  I’m personally most excited to hear from Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes, an absolutely brilliant band I have yet to hear perform their debut album, Blossom, live.  Coming a close second in terms of excitement is A Day To Remember: I absolutely love their new tracks Paranoid and Bad Vibrations, so I’m hoping they perform both of those songs.  It will also be interesting to hear blink-182 perform live without previous member Tom Delonge.

I always enjoy when Radio 1 put on days like this, which showcase the best of alternative music to a more mainstream audience. If only they happened more often!

What’s been your highlight of the Radio 1 Rock All Dayer so far? What bands are you most excited to hear tonight? Let me know on Facebook or Twitter.

Review: Blossom

On Friday, Frank Carter made a triumphant return to hardcore punk music with his new band, Frank Carter and the Rattlesnakes.  Blossom is an explosive debut record full of raw emotion.

The album opens with lead single Juggernaut, which when it was released was a great indicator of things to come.  Anyone expecting the Rattlesnakes to sound anything like Carter’s previous band, Pure Love, would have had those illusions shattered by this powerful track.

Frank Carter is probably best known for his stint as the front man of Gallows, who were well known for their loud and volatile sound.  While it’s obvious that the sentiments explored in Blossom come from a similar place, exploring anger, hatred and loss, The Rattlesnakes manage to make these feelings feel even more raw and visceral.

I wouldn’t want this entire review to focus on Frank Carter, though. Even though he’s the frontman of this incredible new band, without its fantastic musicians there wouldn’t be much to listen to.  The guitars throughout, especially in single Juggernaut, are fantastically powerful, and the drumming is as cymbal-heavy and up tempo as you’d expect from an album of this genre.

Blossom is fast paced for the first half of the album, but towards the end the tracks slow down a little and become more moody and reflective.  The change of pace forces the listener to pay attention, as it’s pretty difficult to predict where the record will go next.  Most of the tracks clock in at under four minutes long, which helps them to pack a more significant punch – it’s surprising how much anger The Rattlesnakes managed to force into each track.

If you were a fan of Gallows when Frank Carter was frontman, then The Rattlesnakes will definitely be right up your street.  If you’re looking for a brand new and explosive record to sink your fangs into (see what I did there? There’s a track on the album called Fangs and – oh never mind), chock full of human emotion with raw punk roots, make sure you get to a music store or online and pick up a copy of Blossom as soon as you can.  I, for one, cannot wait to get my mitts on a physical copy of it.

Highlights: Devil Inside Me, Loss, Beautiful Death