The big one: Liverpool Music Week

Take Liverpool's biggest festival, weld it to the side of the MTV music awards and you get the brimming pre-Christmas hamper that is Liverpool Music Week. Let's have a peak inside...

What is it?
This year's Capital Of Culture opens the doors of nearly 30 venues to over 300 bands, artists and DJs as the city becomes a melee of free and ticketed gigs showcasing internationally acclaimed acts alongside local emerging talent. Expect everything from indie to skiffle anywhere from the Tate Gallery to the Carling Academy.

When and where?
The festival runs from 30 October to 6 November around the pubs, clubs, bars and spaces of The Beatles hometown, Liverpool. Full line-up and venues HERE.

Five to watch

Florence and the Machine – Korova, Saturday
Bluesy indie rock from one of London's hottest properties with a lead singer that's as unpredictable as the current weather.

Dizzee Rascal – Liverpool University, Sunday
Britain's greatest ever rapper will rock Liverpool with his infamous rasp and collection of heavy Bow beats.

Zombina and the Skeletones, The Zanzibar, Tuesday
Spector influenced sixties scare-pop in ghoulish costumes – ideal for a post-Halloween show.

The Fall – Nation, Thursday
Mark E Smith and his most recent rabble of musicians are likely to pick out highlights from the band's 32-year stint. Or rather Mr Smith will.

– Tito’s, Monday
From what we can work out he's a DJ, but we’re going on name alone here.

One to miss

Vampire Weekend – Carling Academy, Thursday
Their sickly and inoffensive afro-pop seems to still be doing the rounds, avoid like Bono at a house party.

Playing a rare festival date

DJ Mujava – Korova, Saturday
This South Africa DJ has probably surprised himself by being on the bill. From giving taxi drivers tapes of his tracks to get them out there, the electro mixoligist has found himself hot property since his 'Township Funk' track exploded in clubland.

Insider's tip

The free nights at the Bumper club are for those after their 'spotters' badge for new acts. Back to back emerging bands fie for your attention over two stages, so go and discover the next big thing.

Be at Liverpool Music Week if you like…
Downloading. This is your chance to get lots and lots of music and not pay for it.

Avoid if you hate…
Midweek partying.

Festival tactics
Head to Bumper unless you've got a pass to a ticketed event, but most of all check out as many venues, and bands, as you can.

Fashionista or folky?
Both. The fashionista will be found at venues like Korova and Magnet, while the folky will be hidden at Alma de Cuba and 33-45 Parr Street.

Alcohol of choice
We don't usually condone this but, half pints. With so much on offer and many of the shows charging nothing to get in, a sneaky half means you can shoot off if you don’t like what you hear, or stay for another beer if you do.

Take your mum score – 3/10
Vampire who? Your mum is unlikely to know any of the bands that are playing, this is one for the youngsters really.

Can I still get tickets?
There are still some passes available for the ticketed shows, but many are sold out. Check HERE for availability.