The independent London newspaper

London Ghost of Christmas present

19 December, 2019 — By Róisín Gadelrab

London Ghost, at Rock ‘N’ Roll Rescue on Dec 20

IT’S that season where you no longer care if you have work in the morning – or even better, you don’t have to return to the office until next year. Bar staff all over the place are working hard to keep the party season going, so we thought we’d bring you an eclectic selection of some of the many happenings out there – think metal yoga, Tim Westwood, orchestral hip-hop classics, The Wurzels, Slade, some brilliant charity gigs + much more…


• Black Heart Grindmas Charity Xmas gig, 7pm. Here’s one that combines partying with doing something good. With a line-up including HOT COPS (Powerviolence Thrash Punx), Grey Brain (Speaker Ripping Filth), Sewer Trench (F**k It), Skullf**ked (Death/Grind) and Gurgle (Melodic Hardcore) plus DJs until 3am – in aid of The Trussell Trust who support a network of food banks, and entry is by donation. See venue website for suggestions.

• Two of the UK’s biggest glam-rock bands – responsible for two huge Christmas hits – both play London on the same day. Slade (above) bring their UK tour to ULU, and over at The Roundhouse, The Darkness take to the stage with their flamboyant performance.

• If you prefer a rock hybrid, The Loveless (Marc Almond, long-term guitarist/sideman Neal X and Iggy Pop’s rhythm section, Ben Ellis and Mat Hector) promise a blistering night of rock ‘n’ roll at 100 Club, drawing material from Marc’s immense back catalogue with nods to T. Rex, Iggy, David Bowie, 60s R&B and Garage Rock. Support TBC plus DJs The Readers Wifes – 7.30pm, £30 adv.

• If UK garage is more your thing, head to Camden Assembly for Oxide & Neutrino UKG XMAS BASH. UKG dons Oxide & Neutrino will be delving back into the archives for some winter wheel-ups, bringing in that old-skool Garage sound – 9.30pm to 3am.

• At Electric Ballroom, Antics Christmas Party’s residents DJ Antics and Matt Terris will be spinning hip-hop, breaks, beats and floor-filling party tunes. In room 2, DJ AK will be playing trap, house, drum ’n’ bass and disco. Tickets £5 adv/on door – £6 with student card or flyer/£8.

• One for the reggae crowd as Janet Kay & Carroll Thompson – The Queens of Lover’s Rock bring their annual Xmas concert to 229.

• It’s the third Friday of the month so it has to be the Crawdaddy! Christmas party. The Fiddler’s Elbow staples feature guest DJ Alan Handscombe joining Gary, Lucienne and Danny playing the finest northern soul, mod, Motown, vintage R&B, Two Tone, ska and rocksteady, all on vinyl. Expect Quality Street and possibly some crackers. 9pm-2am, £5.


• Jazz-funk and R&B band The Blackbyrds play Jazz Cafe on Dec 20-21. Support from Major Ruse. Expect classic cuts, underground hits and rare groove anthems.

• Parkway charity shop Rock ‘N’ Roll Rescue and Kick Out The Jams host a two-day Xmas Party event at their 96 Parkway store. London Ghost and appymess play on Friday (Dec 20). Doors 6.30pm. The Tramadolls and Dave Renegade headline on Saturday (Dec 21). Entry by donation to the shop’s charities, £3 each day, or £5 for both OTD. BYOB + free snacks!


• Enjoy an all-dayer of pop fun with The School Christmas Party featuring The Catenary Wires (full band), Simon Love & The Old Romantics, Rosehip Teahouse, Tugboat Captain, Piney Gir, Alice Hubble, Panic Pocket + DJ Kitschmas (Dandelion Radio). The Lexington, 3pm, £10 door, £8 adv

• The Spitfires play 229.

• Relax away from Christmas shopping madness with Heavy Metal Vinyasa Yoga at The Black Heart from Selma Ra Yoga, promising to fuel meditative movement with some heavy, expansive, smashing atmospheric black, folk, death, and doom metal. Black candles and yoga mats provided, wearing flexible, comfortable clothing, 12.30pm-1.30pm, £10/students £8.

• Experience hip-hop classics performed by a 10-piece orchestra playing Biggie, Busta, Drake, Beyoncé and more at Camden Assembly, 8pm-11pm.

• Hip-hop DJ Tim Westwood & friends present Dripmas – three rooms of bashment, afrobeats, hip-hop, soca, party classics and more at Scala. 10pm to 5am.

• The Wurzels bring their West Country Christmas party to The Garage. Support from The Skimmity Hitchers. 10pm, £17.

• Camden band Ridiculous (above) host their Crimbo Special at Pentameters.

• Continue the season of goodwill with Sublime Terror’s Festive Bonanza, an all-star line-up of extreme metal in aid of Hackney Winter Homeless Shelter featuring Numenorean and Gaerea, at Boston Music Rooms.


• Westlife’s Brian McFadden hosts a Christmas Jam at the 100 Club, featuring Emily Capell, James Holt, Katie Owen (DJ Set) and Andy Bennett with all proceeds going to Musicians Against Homelessness and Crisis. 7.30pm-11pm, £15 adv

• Enjoy an afternoon of swing dance with Bop-A-Lenas Christmas Ball at the Electric Ballroom – seven hours of rockin’ music with guest DJs include Killer Kim (Scotland), Si Tugwell (Birmingham), Simon Preacher (Brighton). In the large downstairs ballroom, DJ Strops Hop & guest DJs will be spinning their vinyl collection –Rockabilly, Rock’n’Roll, DooWop & Rhythm ’n’ Blues from the 50’s & 60’s. 2-9pm, £10.


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