Mount Kimbie, No Age, Mazes, worriesaboutsatan, D/R/U/G/S - Preview: In The City: Manchester

Chris Stanley 13/10/2010

In The City, 13 - 15th October
City Inn, The Place, Northern Quarter

For most In The City doesn't resonate as loudly or more prominently as other UK city based festival like Camden Crawl, Great Escape and Liverpool Sound City this is mainly due to the ITC's ethos and approach which focuses more on the industry side and the unsigned band circuit.

Consider all this plus the fact that it takes place in Autumns gloomy mid October. This may not be most appropriate way to begin talking about an industry festival but in order to see the beauty of something you must also acknowledge its past warts none of which are the festivals fault. The effect of Tony Wilson's sad passing is still felt amongst anyone who has had a history with ITC and with been given week dates to the festival combined with the fore mentioned newer festivals its been difficult.

But no more! With a new approach and new location the futures bright cliché feels more then effective to illustrate what the event has to offer. The past of the event isolated your average music goer as it put the industry first and the price also reflected this isolation. But with the recent introduction of the wristbands and the industry section catered for aspiring younger industry entrepreneurs the doors have been fully swung open that I haven't even mentioned the kaleidoscope of artists and music either.

So even though the official season of festivals you can keep the tent at home, well you can try and pitch up in Piccadilly gardens but the crack heads and weirdoes may have other plans for you. So grab a hotel, sofa or floor and get ready to engage in the yearly activity of hastily running from venue to venue in time to see the next big thing or the oddity you always get at In The City.

The Panels

Although it seems like these are taking a back burner role this year there is always a few interesting discussions whether they are intense philosophical view points on where the industry is and can go, there is also panels from various musical heroes and labels. For instance Pink Floyd's Nick Mason shall be speaking as will Mike Pickering and there is also a Q&A with Creation records regarding the new film which is also being screened.

However there are a few heavier topics of conversation one of the most popular will no doubt be the Musicians Union new positive stance on Pay to Pay play, now for those unaware of the practice or term put simply its musicians bands paying promoters for the privilege of playing a gig. Its no doubt more familiar once a friend in band or a manger friend says “we need to sell 30 tickets or don't get to play more gigs or we have to shell out to pay for tickets we didn't sell”. This bound to cause discussion not only because many of the delegates will be these 'promoters' but also because the MU is supposed represent and advise musicians rather then encourage the conmen.

There is also one regarding the current fiasco taking place in the U.S and you know what they say 'what happens over there happens over here' however 21st Century Ticketing attempts to address that and over issues facing the live industry.

However these are just mere morsels the real extent of the talks, Q&As and keynote speeches are vast and each individual will connect with a variety of different topics and speakers.

The Hive

In The City's continuation of change and breaking down boundaries continues with a new event especially catered for the new industry blood whether it be those wanting to A&R, manage, promote or publish there those professional creative minds there to guide, advise and teach the basics of an industry that can appear daunting but in reality is cavernous when
the light is switched on. Breaking down the barriers marks one the second important changes for ITC the first being the introduction of wrist bands for the music events by making it affordable and accessible. The Hive makes accessing the industry easier for the future generation and a snip of 60 for the two days of talks whilst including access to the live events as well.

Wednesday 13th October Showcase of the Day

Drowned in Sound @ Night & Day Café

After The Drums took to the stage at the Night & Day last year its safe to say that anyone attempting to catch any band there this year will be in for the same sweat shop and dehydration fest that left many of us gasping for
the bitter Autumn air. Regardless the of this it'll be worth it with a mixture of high level and unsigned acts their entire roaster may drive most to avoid venue hopping.

No Age's two man garage rock outfit are no doubt one of the events main attractions. Being one of the official Unsigned bands Mazes unfaltering collection of rock fuzz songs will be a highlight to any gig hopper.

Who loves math rock? We love math rock! So does Brontide who also add to DiS's impressive line up.

Thursday 14th October Showcase of the Day

Now Wave @ Band on the Wall

Manchester's most popular and diverse music club night have over taken the revamped and historic Band on the Wall for an evening of continued aural pleasure. There is little reason to go looking elsewhere on Thursday here are three reasons why.

Check out worriedaboutsatan whose glitches, loops and guitars fade into a venue more suited to world music and jazz. Bet you its going to be glorious!

D/R/U/G/S are on the mouths of more people then lipstick in a brothel, another duo using various bleeps combined with an extraordinary live energy explain the hype.

Mount Kimble follows this trilogy of duos with glitch infested computer fed music completes this line up.

Friday 15th October Showcase of the Day

Akoustic Anarchy @ The Castle

A long withstanding staple of Manchester's musical diet offer a platter of varied and wonderful delights (I'll quit it with the food, promise).

Working for Nuclear Free City are probably Manchester's best kept secret which has always been a shame however we wouldn't get the chance to see them in a small venue otherwise.

Beat The Radar have a relentless barrage of pop soaked tunes at their disposal which strangely fit into vast array of musical personalities.

Plank! are another one of those personalities who prefer a krautrock approach whilst disowning this persona at the same time.

The reality is all this is a only a mere glimpse of a taster of a particle of what really goes on and what is on offer. Use the links below!