We’ve racked up scores of gigs again this year and the highlights have come thick and fast.

But only the top 10 of 2011 make the cut and one show has to beat them all. Read on to find out where that gig took place… 



They’re Swedish and sound like a death metal band but don’t be fooled by the country of origin and the name: this lot roll out 70s-inspired classic rock like it never went out of fashion.

Appearing on the downsized Metal Hammer Stage at High Voltage 2011, the quartet let their hair down (all of it) in style on one of the few baking hot days of a soggy British summer. And if you missed this brief but brilliant set then you missed out.

Graveyard boast the songs, the attitude, the mystique and the retro cool image to become one of the biggest bands of 2012. The need to tour the UK extensively and vigorously is there for all to see – do that and they’ll do very well indeed.


2 Vintage TroubleNewcastle The Cluny, August

3 HoustonDownload Festival, June

4 Mr BigDownload Festival, June

5 Michael SchenkerNewcastle Academy (Black Country Communion support), July

6 In FlamesNewcastle Academy (Defenders Of The Faith tour), December

7 RushNewcastle Metro Radio Arena, May

8 ForeignerNewcastle Metro Radio Arena, June

9 OpethNewcastle Academy, November

10 Thin LizzyNewcastle City Hall, January