NME Tours

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Logo of the 2008 NME Awards Tour.

The NME Tours consist of a variety of tours organised by British music industry publication NME. Throughout the year, NME sponsors numerous tours of the United Kingdom by various up-and-coming and established bands in a variety of formats. The tours are titled to reflect the genre and type of bands playing on them.

ShockWaves NME Awards Tours[edit]

Logo of the 2006 NME Awards Tour.

The ShockWaves NME Awards Tours (known without sponsorship as the NME Awards Tour before 1999, and the Brat Bus Tour before 1998) normally takes place in the lead up to the official NME Awards themselves. The tour has been known to sell out in just a matter of hours.[1] The tour normally showcasts the main protagonists of the independent alternative rock scene, with a number of relatively unheard of bands usually supporting more mainstream acts. A number of previous support acts on the tour have gone on to become very successful commercially, such as Arctic Monkeys (support act in 2006) and Franz Ferdinand (who played the opening slot in 2004). Since 2005, the tour has been sponsored by unisex hair product company ShockWaves.

In 2007, the main NME Awards tour was split into two different tours of four bands each. The first tour, the ShockWaves NME Indie Rock Tour was created to reflect the growing indie rock scene in Britain throughout 2006-2007. The second tour, the ShockWaves NME Indie Rave Tour, displays the small number of bands currently associated with the New Rave music genre. NME editor Conor McNicholas stated that the reason for the tour split was to allow more fans to gain tickets to the Awards tour, and allow them to display more bands at the one time.[2] The tours were played in a number of intertwined dates at the same time. This format was kept for one year, before reverting to one tour in 2008. In 2017, rather than organise a tour themselves, NME sponsored a series of previously announced headline dates by the band Blossoms.

NME Radar Tour[edit]

The NME Radar Tour (formerly known as the Topman NME New Noise Tour in 2008,[11] and the Topman NME New Music Tour before 2008[12]) has taken place in venues throughout the United Kingdom since 2005. The tour is played by relatively unknown bands to gain them more mainstream exposure. In 2009, a second "Autumn Radar Tour" took place during September and October.[13] In 2014, the event was rebranded the NME New Breed Tour; NME and headliners Superfood handpicked a different support act for each night of the tour. The tour did not return in 2015.

O2/NME Rock 'N' Roll Riot Tour[edit]

Logo of the 2007 Rock 'n' Roll Riot Tour.

The NME Rock 'n' Roll Riot Tour (sponsored by O2) started in 2003. The tour usually takes place later in the year compared to the main awards tours, taking place in September–October of each year. Some of the bands have even gone on to play in other NME Tours; The Horrors, following their support slot on the 2006 Riot Tour, would later play on the 2007 NME Awards Indie Rock Tour.

1Support for the tour was confirmed by Fused Magazine.[18] Official support acts were never announced by NME.

NME Rock 'N' Roll Riot Tour (United States)[edit]

On 20 August 2007, NME announced they would be adding a further Rock 'n' Roll Tour, this time as a tour of the US.[19] The inaugural tour features mainly bands from areas of the US, such as New York City, Brooklyn and Los Angeles.[20]

NME Freshers Tour[edit]

The NME Freshers Tour is taking place around "Freshers week", the week in which Universities in the UK begin their first academic term. 2007 marks the debut of this tour.

NME New Rave Revolution Tour[edit]

The NME New Rave Revolution Tour was a tour that took place throughout September to October 2006.[22] The line-up consisted of bands who were closely related to the "New Rave" music scene which appeared throughout 2006. Klaxons would go on to headline the Indie Rave leg of the NME Awards Tour in February 2007

It is unknown whether or not another New Rave Revolution Tour will take place, due to the small number of bands and the short-lived nature of the genre.


  1. ^ "NME tour: full line up revealed". NME. Retrieved 2007-08-13. 
  2. ^ a b "NME ANNOUNCES DOUBLE SHOCKWAVES NME AWARDS TOURS 2007". IPC Media. Retrieved 2007-08-13. 
  3. ^ "Crystal Castles, Magnetic Man, Everything Everything, Vaccines for NME Awards Tour 2011". NME. 2010-11-08. Retrieved 2011-01-07. 
  4. ^ "Maccabees, Bombay Bicycle Club, Big Pink, Drums for Shockwaves NME Awards Tour". NME. 2009-11-09. Retrieved 6 December 2009. 
  5. ^ "Shockwaves NME Awards Tour 2009 line-up revealed". NME. Retrieved 2008-11-11. 
  6. ^ "The Cribs Head NME Tour". MTV. 2007-11-15. Retrieved 6 December 2009. 
  7. ^ "NME tour: full line up revealed". NME. 2005-11-25. Retrieved 6 December 2009. 
  8. ^ "KILLER LINE-UP FOR SHOCKWAVES NME AWARDS TOUR". NME. 2004-11-16. Retrieved 6 December 2009. 
  9. ^ "HYSTERIA AS NME AWARDS TOUR GETS UNDERWAY". NME. 2004-01-26. Retrieved 6 December 2009. 
  10. ^ Kershaw, Richard (2003-02-14). "Review / Interpol @ Astoria, 9/02/03". Drowned in Sound. Retrieved 6 December 2009. 
  11. ^ "Topman NME New Noise Tour 2008 tickets on sale now". NME. 2008-05-11. Retrieved 2009-03-06. 
  12. ^ "Topman NME New Music Tour: Line-up announced". NME. 2007-05-20. Retrieved 2009-03-06. 
  13. ^ "NME Radar 2009 - Featuring Golden Silvers, Marina & the Diamonds, Local Natives and Yes Giantess". NME. p. 1. Retrieved 2009-07-21. 
  14. ^ "Flats and Wilder to join Joy Formidable and Chapel Club on Emerge NME Radar Tour". NME. 2010-08-24. Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  15. ^ "Hurts, Everything Everything, Darwin Deez for NME Radar Tour 2010". NME. 2010-03-02. Retrieved 2010-03-02. 
  16. ^ "NME New Music Tour 2006". bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 2007-08-13. 
  17. ^ "The Enemy sign up for exclusive NME tour". NME.com. Retrieved 2007-07-24. 
  18. ^ "News: RTX to tour with Primal Scream". Fused Magazine. 6 November 2008. Retrieved 2009-02-26. 
  19. ^ "NME presents The Hold Steady on US tour". NME.com. Retrieved 2007-08-24. 
  20. ^ "The Hold Steady headline NME's US Rock 'N' Roll Riot Tour". NME.com. Retrieved 2007-08-24. 
  21. ^ "NME Freshers Tour 07 is GO!". NME.com. Retrieved 2007-08-13. 
  22. ^ "Klaxons are a real blast". Manchester Evening News. Archived from the original on 2007-04-03. Retrieved 2007-08-13. 
  23. ^ "Nme on Tour: Klaxons + Shit Disco + Datarock". Koko. Retrieved 2010-10-11. 

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