Local bands rally to help the troops

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EACH month, The Bunker studios in Stockton Road, Sunderland, give us their take on the local music scene.

STARTING the New Year the way it will undoubtedly go on, the local music scene already has some top events lined-up for 2012.

A host of Sunderland musical talent will be lending a hand to troops, by playing a gig at Newcastle’s The Riverside.

Four bands from around the country will perform at the January 21 gig.

Hull indie-pop trio Streaming Lights, Sunderland rock’n’rollers Sonner, rising stars Symphonic Pictures and young math-pop trio Liars Lie! will all be playing the gig, which aims to benefit armed forces charity Help For Heroes.

Frankie & The Heartstrings and The Futureheads will also be contributing, with DJ sets from Mick Ross and Barry Hyde spinning tunes into the night.

Doors open at 7pm, with all the proceeds raised from the £6 ticket price going to Help For Heroes.

The night has been orchestrated by new-to-the-scene Lone Wolf Promotions.

The brainchild of Sunderland student and music fan Alex Burgess, Lone Wolf’s previous gigs have seen Sunderland acts raise money for charities such as Oxfam.

Elsewhere, there’s nothing like a bit of healthy competition to stimulate the music scene, which is exactly what a city centre venue is aiming to do.

Live music championing-pub The Ivy House are rebranding their weekly gigs to create a year-long contest that will crown one act the punters’ favourite.

Each Thursday three acts will perform in an acoustic showcase, attempting to win over the audience with their stripped-back sets.

The best set of the night will be chosen via a little audience participation, with the crowd voting for their favourite act.

The act who comes top of the league table will bag themselves £1,000 amongst other goodies.

The first leg tonight pits Darlington blues band Goy Boy McIlroy against fellow Darlington act, electronic pop duo Now, Voyager and solo act John Renney.

Entry is free.

Here’s a selection of some of Sunderland’s upcoming gigs:

Tonight: Goy Boy McIlroy, Now Voyager, John Renney – The Ivy House.

January 12: Manifesto Presents: Ani Sandwith, Dead Miles and Rebel Territory – The Ivy House.

January 19: Eli, Annabelle Pattison, David McGlyn – The Ivy House.

January 21: Sonner, Streaming Lights, Symphonic Pictures, Liars Lie! – The Riverside, Newcastle.

January 26: The Monologues, Jamie Devine – The Ivy House.

January 27: 27 Side Effects, Sunday Best – The Smugglers.