Buy tickets for Bristol's best gigs and live music.
Bristol’s best gigs
Every week, the Headfirst editors trawl through all of the live music listings on the website and pick the best gigs for you to go to. Our event selections range from classical music concerts at St George’s Hall to smaller, local musician’s gigs at The Canteen or the Exchange.
Check out this week’s Bristol gig selections over on the Headfirst Facebook page and don’t forget to like us for ticket alerts and announcements about interesting bands coming to Bristol.
Tickets for Bristol gigs
In 2016, Headfirst Bristol launched an online ticket shop for live music events. Inspired by local cooperatives and community interest companies like the Bristol Cable and The Island, Headfirst provides an ethical and respectful place to buy tickets for gigs in Bristol. Our booking fees are low (usually 50p per ticket) and we strive to help support independent live music events as much as large concerts at venues like Colston Hall or Marble Factory.
CoCo and the Butterfields are an English indie-pop band, from Canterbury, Kent.
Live music venues in Bristol
Bristol’s gig venues play an essential and often overlooked role in the city’s music scene. A spectrum of venues provides a ladder for new bands and musical talent to ascend. DIY spaces like The Old England and The Surrey Vaults provide a testbed for the screaming synthesisers and and guitars that will undoubtedly become part of Bristol’s future. Check out Headfirst’s Bristol venues page to discover which kind of performances and concerts you can expect from each gig venue.
SCANDINAVIAN GARAGE ROCK / FREE JAZZ
––– Having collaborated with Thurston Moore, Nenah Cherry and Jim O'Rourke, as well as the cream of the world's elite jazz players, The Thing's influence has surpassed all expectations. Formed in 1999 as a tribute to Don Cherry, they've since gone on to re-contextualise pieces by PJ Harvey, Albert Ayler and The White Stripes.
The Thing play Exchange on Thursday 23rd November thanks to Cacophonous Sarcophagus and Colston Hall. Support comes from Istanbul's incredible KONSTRUKT, who mix traditional Turkish music with experimental jazz and electronics.
Tickets: hdfst.uk/E39310 £14 + 70p.
Rephlex Records veteran Aleksi Perala has always been a prolific artist - but in the last few years his output has surged into overdrive. Since 2014, the Finnish producer has penned no fewer than 20 full-length albums - his secret being the discovery of a clandestine, non-standard tuning system dubbed the Colundi sequence. Using this spiritually derived set of frequencies, Perälä makes pure, looping techno built solely from sine waves and percussive pulses. The results sit somewhere between the hypnotic techno of Sleeparchive and the abstract minimalism of Steve Reich.
Experience the power of Colundi in person at Arnolfini courtesy of Room 237 Bristol. Support from Broken English Club, Giant Swan, Damian Licht.
Kicking off his residency at Cube Microplex, folk singer & guitarist Alasdair Roberts( The Furrow Collective) initiates an ambitious project: recording a live album with a troupe of guest musicians. Solo, Roberts has a delicate Incredible String Band style. A serial collaborator, this performance brings together musicians with enthusiasm for the mid-century folk revival. Traditional Scottish fiddler Neil McDermott, and three-part harmonies in French from Tartine de Clous.
THE BRISTOL GERM LAUNCH
Illustrated music magazine The Bristol GERM, focuses on avant-garde and experimental music and promises to be a welcome addition to Bristol’s underground music scene. This is their launch party.
In a band where fx pedals outnumber musicians four-to-one, stentorian vocals are torn apart and hurled with abandon. Diced drum patterns, heavy guitar riffs and floods of distortion complete The Naturals’ sound - first heard on their 2015 debut for Howling Owl Records. The band have promised to debut unheard new material at next month’s TBG zine launch.
Following Simple Things Festival - Bristol, and support for Holy Fuck, newcomers SCALPING combine noise, techno and stunning live visuals.
Secret location sent to ticket holders ahead of event.
Warehouse techno, industrial noise & post-punk in the prison cells.
Gigs in Bristol today
Most of Headfirst’s visitors come to discover new bands and live music in Bristol. We’re proud to be Bristol’s most complete gig listings resource, complete with a full breakdown of gigs in Bristol today and tour dates for the next six months. A sterling selection of open mic nights (particularly along Gloucester Road), provide ample midweek entertainment for would-be talent scouts.
time traveller, sci-fi character, intrepid storyteller.
Coaxing harmonies from audiences, pilfering fragments from dub or folk, he turns from Beach Boys to Flaming Lips on a dime.
No stranger to peculiar venues: garden shed;
FLAMINGODS + MUNCIE GIRLS + 808INK
Flamingods, propelled by the irresistible rhythm section build layers of sound rich with influences, from Boredoms to disco to East African funk (see also: Imarhan; The Comet is Coming). The multi-instrumentalist 5 piece, a big hit at this year’s SXSW, are joined by Sleater-Kinney-esque Muncie Girls and the experimental hip-hop of charismatic London duo 808INK
Trinity Centre provides the perfect space for this eclectic PRS Foundation showcase.
Mastering engineer at Berlin’s D&M studio, Rashad Becker is a behind-the-scenes legend. As a composer, he has released two volumes of 'Traditional Music for Notional Species' on PAN, each absolute masterclasses in subtle intricacy and head-stretching abstraction. Expect more improv rhythmic pressure from Kinlaw, plus 16mm loops & reel-to-reel from Louisa Fairclough.
Tickets: £7 + 50p.
SWISS SYNTH PUNX AT THE SURREY
Lo-fi new wave and wonky post-punk from Geneva girls Maraudeur.
They stop off at The Surrey Vaults on 19th Oct, as part of their first UK jaunt. Their debut LP is out soon on bruit direct disques, continuing the punk-funk stylings of ESG, Kleenex and Delta 5.
Tickets: hdfst.uk/E41074 £3.50 + 50p.
Local musicians are the lifeblood and new energy that constantly rejuvenates Bristol’s venues and performance spaces. Graduates from Bristol University’s Music course and BIMM provide regular injections of talent ranging from electronic music producers to classically trained pianists and orchestral musicians. Some of Bristol’s most successful bands are the first to point out that their inspiration comes from other local bands and gigs they’ve attended; with this in mind Headfirst is careful to include as much local talent as possible in it’s gig guide.
In addition to attending gigs you can also support Bristol’s musicians by buying their records from independent stores like Rise Records and Christmas Steps Records.