I, Daniel Blake (dir: Ken Loach, 2016, cert 15) at Thimblemill Library
Loach is angry and so will you be after viewing the tribulations of the titular Daniel as he strives to negotiate the bureaucratic behemoth of state welfare. No sitting on the fence here and the message is certainly hammered home but when the rhetoric of the right wing press is likewise hammered into popular consciousness maybe it’s the only way. An important antidote to the vile class stereotyping so beloved of the Daily Mail and its ilk and the most relevant film you will see this last year. You have been told.
Mon 30 Jan 7.30pm at Thimblemill Library, Thimblemill Rd, Smethwick B67 5RJ Free facebook

Mellow Yellow at The Island Bar
Back with their monthly showcase of the best in local music Mellow Yellow have lined up a stellar evening of music from local and upcoming talent. Grande Valise are great fun live, drawing on a wide range of influences they produce cheery pop noise and have a self-financed album ‘Minnewater’ out. They claim to be shy but you’d never know it. Also appearing is Ben Matthews Frost, a progressive singer songwriter with a new album on the horizon whose sound recalls Nick Drake and Bert Jansch. There are more acts to be confirmed and whilst you’re there take advantage of some of the best cocktails in Birmingham. It’s a win win.
Wed 1 Feb 7pm at Island Bar, 14-16 Suffolk Street, Queensway, Birmingham B1 1LT facebook

CBSO Pre-Concert Showcase at the Symphony Hall
Renowned conductor Michael Seal has been linked to the CBSO since joining their ranks as a violinist in 1992. The associate conductor of the CBSO since 2005 this is a great opportunity to see a master of his craft at work conducting the Birmingham Conservatoire Symphony Orchestra and all for free. The Orchestra will be performing Ravel’s beautiful ‘Daphnis et Chloé: Suites 1 & 2’. What a simply perfect way to escape the cold and relax in another cultural jewel of our city.
Thu 2 Feb 1pm at The Symphony Hall, Broad Street Birmingham B1 2EA conservatoire/

Poetry Jam 4th Birthday Special at Impact Hub
Has it really been four years since Poetry Jam began expanding the literary landscape of Birmingham? The monthly events have become something of a must see experience, bringing together a host of performers across all genres from experienced to first timers. This creates a special energy and vibrancy that is unique to the Jam. There will be laughter, there may be tears, but there will definitely be honesty. Expect clicking but don’t be alarmed, that’s the audience agreeing, approving or just plain enjoying proceedings. If you want to perform on the open mic get there at least 15 minutes before the start.
Thu 2 Feb 7pm at Impact HUB,  58 Oxford Street, Birmingham B5 5NR facebook

Faith Brackenbury – The Knife Angel Project at Symphony Hall 
Music composed for a jazz sextet inspired by Alfie Bradley’s Knife Angel sculpture, which is constructed entirely from knives collected during police amnesties and weighs an incredible 10 tons. Classically trained violinist Faith is an ex-student of Birmingham Conservatoire and it’s great to have her back in the city. The sextet is completed by some of the cream of UK jazz including Martin Speake, Alex Maguire, Billy Marrow, Stuart Barker and Will Glaser.
Fri 3 Feb 5pm at The Symphony Hall, Broad Street Birmingham B1 2EA thsh

Family Saturday at The Ikon Gallery
The Ikon is one of Birmingham’s most creative and imaginative art spaces, always worth a visit and casual browse in the happy knowledge that your intellectual muscles are going to be stretched. The lift transporting you from exhibition to exhibition will also reset your zen levels to perfect. This Saturday you can bring the kids and expose them to a raft of beautiful art with activities, inspired by the current exhibition, being laid on to engage their inquisitive minds. You may just inspire the next Roger Hiorns, the Birmingham born artist whose incredible installation is currently on display.
Sat 4 Feb 1pm at Ikon Gallery, Brindleyplace, Birmingham B1 2HS ikon-gallery

Birmingham Horror Group at The Gunmakers Arms
Every month the enigmatic Steve Green from the Birmingham Horror Group lays on an evening of imaginative entertainment, chat and of course drinking. Last month’s movie marathon was a particular highlight with several short films screened along with enlightening Q&A’s with the filmmakers involved. This month there will be a personal appearance from acclaimed horror writer Adam Nevill who has been praised as Britain’s answer to Stephen King, Adam will be discussing his latest novel ‘Under A Watchful Eye’. Oh and whilst you are there be sure to sample the huge range of craft ales available.
Sat 4 Feb 7pm at Gunmakers Arms, Bath Street, Birmingham B4 6HG birmingham-horror

Music of Distinct Origin at the Dark Horse
The MODO gang have taken up a monthly residency at the Dark Horse which is good news for party people. That’s twelve potential events a year by our reckoning, each filling the upstairs of Moseley’s coolest pub with a host of established and up and coming DJ’s. Resident’s Miguel Verde and Vikki Jessop will be rumbling the roof off with their deep house grooves and great things are expected of newcomer Samo Lung. To get in free you will have to state you’re attending on the Facebook event page. One little move of the finger and free entry, how cool is that? See you on the dancefloor.
Sat 4 Feb 9pm at The Dark Horse, Alcester Road, Moseley, Birmingham B13 8JP  facebook

Digbeth First Fridays at various venues
Featuring late night art, urban architecture, dance performances and the Eastern Bloc Disco. See our full preview here.

Mon 30 Jan - Sun 5 Feb
Giles Logan
Published on:
Tue 3 Jan 2017