NICE THINGS Etsy is full of a lot of crap (fancy a knitted penis? A sculpture made from cat hair? No, us neither) but amongst the rubbish there’s some real gems. This new line from the Vintage Confectionary Company is a lovely, clever space-themed lollipop line. Perfect for the sweet-toothed geek in your life. More information
GIG Birmingham’s Swim Deep create lush 90s-tinged slacker-rock with basement-busting choruses, and head to the Kazimier this Saturday. They might not be the most innovative band ever, but when the tunes are this good, who cares? Dreamy scuzz-pop at its finest. Recommended. Facebook event
MUSIC Liverpool-via-Berlin’s Silent Sleep are one of our new favourite local projects: new single ‘You Can Colour Me In’, on local label Rekordmeister, starts off as a delicate country twang before exploding in Arcade Fire-y, Efterklang-y, Beirut-y epic loveliness. The album’s out properly on 8th April, but in the meantime this rousing single, out this week, will keep us company. Nice hat too, la.
ART Fancy honing a brand new skill? Every Tuesday afternoon and evening at Bluecoat, Dot-Art run life drawing classes in a relaxed, informal setting with expert help at hand. Classes cost £16 a pop. www.dot-art.co.uk/art-classes
BLOG New York’s basically our spiritual home. And, although Birkenhead is yet to be twinned with Brooklyn (we’re working on it), we still love checking in on everything NYC-related. This gorgeous illustrated blog does what it says in the title – a selection of New York windows, beautifully rendered in eye-candy colour schemes. A perfect lunch break chillout. (Combine it with hunting said windows down on Google Maps for extra fun). www.windowsofnewyork.com
GIG YThe fizzing alt pop of Gallops merges the math-like intensity of Battles with surging electronic wig outs. Its a complex and heady stew, like the soundtrack to a Fritz Lang documentary about the end of civilisation, and one we approve of wholeheartedly. The best thing to come out of Wrexham since the A55.
EVENT The Royal Opera House comes to FACT for this simulcast of the Tchaikovsky classic, a major highlight of the winter season, and a three hour feast of Russian life, death, love and, well, everything in between.
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