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Next week in Munich – Kevin Devine, Max Prosa, The Maccabees

The best way to ignore these current freezing temperatures and the snowfall is surely to put on your dancing shoes (or snow boots) and go party somewhere warm. Substanz is hosting a Frank Zappa party on Monday night from 9pm onwards, presenting highlights from Zappa’s thirty-year career.

If Zappa’s not your thing but you’re up for something equally wacky, head to the Prinzregententheater to check out the United Kingdom Ukelele Orchestra. Ticket prices are between 29 € – 50 € and the concert starts at 8pm. If you fancy catching ukelele interpretations of rock’n’roll, punk, jazz and classical tunes, it’s not to be missed. Here they are playing We Will Rock You.

Leipzig’s Talking to Turtles are at the Muffathalle on Monday – one of the few German bands to have broken out onto the international scene. Their Oh, The Good Life acoustic album from 2011 was a hit. If you like good melodies, check them out. The high-profile gig of Monday night is The Maccabees at Backstage – Mumford and Sons’ keyboardist has been raving about themrecently (pushing for their resurrection?) and they’ve managed to get a lot of press coverage for their newest, third album (yet critics have panned their live performances). Still not sold out, tickets are 19 €.

Tuesday, is Valentine’s Day. Everything is ridiculously quiet. Nothing to report in the way of decent concerts or theatre – except for Verdi’s La Traviata at the Nationaltheater (but it’s been sold out for ages).

Wednesday welcomes poetic Max Prosa to Munich – he’s one for the teenage girls. A pretty face, neo-folk tunes and a former philosophy student. Yet he’s not just a pretty face – there’s an obvious Dylan influence in his work and his voice is certainly distinctive.

On Thursday 16 February, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah are at the Ampere – back in 2005, they were one of the hottest bands around, but since then, not a lot has happened. Their show promises bass-driven songs, wavering vocals and energy – but reports have suggested that they lack a little something when performing live. An alternative for Thursday night might be Phantogram, another New York band – but performing psych pop. They’re playing at the Orangehouse, which makes for an intimate venue – and with a recent new release (their November 2011 EP Nightlife), they’re ones to watch.

On Friday, pop down to he Kranhalle to check out artsinmunich’s good friends at Flowerstreet Records – where the label will present four young bands. Perfect for those who like energetic indie.

On Saturday, I recommend you check out Kevin Devine, who I first saw supporting Nada Surf on tour in 2010. I interviewed him just after the gig and he was lovely – and his song Brother’s Blood is a tune I keep coming back to. Sung live and acoustically, it’s breathtaking. He’s in the Atomic Cafe on Saturday 18 February – if there’s one gig to catch this week, Kevin Devine is it.

Sunday’s quiet, except for the German singer-songwriter Tim Bendzko. His music isn’t my sort of thing, but he’s popular in Germany (his debut album reached number 4 in the charts). He’ll be in the Muffathalle, entertaining your ears.

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