LOLA Recommends: Gigs in December

We List Our Unmissable Gigs of the Month

Words By Edited by Maggie Devlin

We recently discovered that Glühwein is available in the hellish fluorescent halls of supermarkets in tidy one litre cartons. Why bother with rampaging children and wind-blown snow at Christmas markets when you can have that festive feeling in the comfort of your pyjamas?

We’re not recluses though; despite the magic of Glühwein packaged like chocolate milk for adults, there is nothing – not even a night at home with scented candles, twinkling fairy-lights and a steaming cup of grog – that can keep us from live music. Here’s our rundown of our favourite gigs this month.

SOVIET SOVIET (support: Mexican Radio)
Bassy Club
December 5th 20:00

Need some post-punk-infused, vaguely danceable tunes to shake off impending winter blues? Join us at Bassy on Tuesday 5th as we dive into the dreamy soundscapes of Soviet Soviet. You can leave your all-black outfit at home though, this is not a ‘goth kids only’ affair. The Italian trio offers a slightly softer, more colourful blend of post-punk with an occasional pop twist. Come early to catch the pensive melodies of the Berlin-based synth punk trio Mexican Radio. Natálie Zehnalová

Woman (support: Xul Zolar)
Kantine am Berghain
December 6th 20:00

For the cool kids of Cologne, Woman is old news. But it wasn’t until this year that the rest of the country caught up. The guys took a long time and great care to nurse their sound before putting their debut out there, and it’s well worth the wait. The psych-pop trio deals with the ambiguities of living in the concrete jungle, in the vast universe of a big city, and turns them into smooth synthy sounds. Don’t miss the Berlin stop of the Happy Freedom tour in Kantine am Berghain and get down early to hear the fellow Cologners Xul Zular, too. Surfing on a similar sonic wave as Woman, their debut is due early next year. Natálie Zehnalová

Marie Antoinette
December 8th 20:00

French noiseniks Aquasege might have started out at the more intricate and experimental edges of Krautrock, but on their latest album Laisse ça être they’ve been circling inwards, finding their groove and getting ever more danceable. Samba, funk, tango and afrobeat influences meet their psychedelic, jazzy leanings to create a delightfully weird yet accessible stew. Support comes from brome, plus DJ set action courtesy of the legendary Jimmy Trash. Jonny Tiernan

The LOLA Xmas Party: Steev Lemercier, MIKEY., Gaff E and more
December 8th 22:00

We’re always looking for an excuse to party, and the festive season is a mighty good one. Amazing live performances on the night include the inimitable Steev Lemercier joined on his stage by his power dancers for a full audio–visual experience. His delivery is part MIA, part Prince, all amazing. MIKEY. will also be playing live, presenting its tender and intimate stylings, with a few new surprises in store. DJs for the night will be legendary party queen and disco extraordinaire Gaff E, spaced-out funk maestro Sofa Kid, and disco-punk specialist Jonny Tiernan. Our host for the evening will be the wonderful drag star Oozing Gloop, introducing all of the acts and being unstoppably entertaining. Jonny Tiernan

Dysnea Boys, RYL, Dead Sentries – Psych Out IV
Garage Pankow
December 9th 19:30
Scorching punk from locals Dead Sentries, with Dysnea Boys and RYL at Psych Out IV in the Garage Pankow. Dead Sentries burst eardrums with high octane, Iggy Pop-inspired numbers that scream from the first second to the characteristically whiplash inducing stops. Dysnea Boys and RYL close out the night with more raging post-punk tunes. Maggie Devlin

John Smith
December 11th 20:00

John Smith is so perfect for winter listening, he even has a song named after it. This British guitarist charmed legions of folk lovers in 2006 with his album The Fox and the Monk and is currently touring his latest release, Headlong. Percussive slaps on the guitar and rasping, sensual vocals make for a haunting performance, made all the more poignant by the album being dedicated to late English guitar virtuoso John Renbourn. Maggie Devlin

Ground Patrol with visual artist, Claudia Schmitz
Neu West
December 12th 21:00

Trance-inducing math rock from Brooklyn–Sydney duo, Ground Control whose stuttering guitar lines and racing drums make for an urgent yet delicate sound; at once bare but with enough melodic intricacy to keep the listener primed. Improvisation is central to the duo’s performances, making their set at Neu West a one-of-a-kind conceptual experiment together with visual artist Claudia Schmitz. Maggie Devlin

Let’s Merry! With Kamoos, Party Fears & Mondo Fumatore
December 20th 20:00

Darlings of the Berlin indie scene, Mondo Fumatore take the stage at everyone’s favourite Neukölln indie-box, Loophole. This trio delivers soaring pop numbers, with gorgeously twangy guitars and bassist/singer Gwen’s magnetic stage-presence. Playing also are LOLA favourites, Party Fears who this year mounted a DIY tour of the UK and will return there early 2018 to record their sophomore record. Support comes from Kamoos. Jonny Tiernan