The line-up for the latest edition of BBC 6 Music Live has been announced with a series of shows at the Maida Vale studios in the first half of October. Johnny Marr, La Roux, First Aid Kit, Underworld and James are the five acts who will be performing intimate shows in front of a handful of lucky punters from 6-10 October.
The date you most need to be concerned about is Monday 15 September — that's next Monday, the day the ballot opens for tickets for the five shows. 6 Music haven't yet managed to put ballot details on their website but keep checking their 6 Music Live page and with any luck Auntie might pull her finger out before she starts receiving irate phone calls. Alternatively, you could listen to a lot of 6 Music, as they're sure to be banging on about it quite a bit.
So what have the acts in question been peddling lately?
It's obvious people will be queuing up to hear Johnny Marr perform a few Smiths classics, but it's likely he'd rather you heard tunes from his new solo album. He's playing at Maida Vale on 6 October, the very day that his second solo LP, Playland, is released. How did the BBC convince him to play? Here's the record's lead single, Easy Money.
Swedish duo First Aid Kit's third album will be a full four months old by the time they play for the Beeb. Stay Gold received positive write-ups when it was released in June and if they can use the show to help shift a few more, well that's fair enough. Here's arguably the best track on the album, My Silver Lining.
La Roux has, you guessed it, also released an album in the summer just passed. Trouble in Paradise was recorded in a converted barn in Devon and was released to five-star reviews from a number of newspapers who tend to like this type of thing. Yes, Guardian, you're quite right to prick your ears up. The album's hit a high of number 6 in the UK charts so far, and here's Uptight Downtown from it, a song about the London riots of August 2011.
James are perhaps the surprise pick of the line-up. Yes, they have a record to plug — La Petite Mort, out this year, named after something rude that you'll have to look up yourself. Despite their apparent renaissance they're not exactly regarded as fashionable, nevertheless they have shifted upwards of 25 million records in their career and so can hardly be discounted. Here's a song you'll have to hope they play instead of that appalling Sit Down record: Moving On, from the aforementioned rude album.
Finally, there's Underworld, the only act here who don't strictly speaking have a record to plug. Having said that, their main man Karl Hyde does have a solo record out (a collaboration with Brian Eno called High Life), but it's more likely Underworld will be playing music from their debut album Dubnobasswithmyheadman, which is 20 years old this year and is getting an outing at the Southbank Centre just after the band's Maida Vale show. The Southbank gig is sold out — all the more reason to get into the BBC ballot so you can hear music like this, Cowgirl. From 20 years ago. Londonist feels old.
BBC 6 Music Live is a series of live sessions at Maida Vale Studios from 6-10 October. Exact dates of each gig are yet to be published but the ticket ballot opens on Monday 15 September so keep an eye on the 6 Music Live page for details.