Following two successful sell-outs, Manchester’s multi-venue live music event and conference, Off The Record, returns to Manchester’s Northern Quarter. On 15th and 16th November the festival will take over the Northern Quarter with more venues and its biggest conference and curator line-up yet.

Off The Record was launched by three of the UK’s premiere independent music festival; Kendal Calling, Sound City and Bluedot to showcase innovative ideas, new music and emerging artists. During the day there is a music conference at the Methodist Central Hall, curated by Sound City, featuring key speakers from labels, publishing, A&R, streaming and live to give helpful tip and tricks to those starting out in the music industry. In the evening Off The Record then puts the best acts handpicked from a long list of curators including: Everything Everything, Huw Stephens, John Kennedy and MCR Live amongst a whole host of others. The conference and live music showcase will have a strong female representation, with female-led initiatives from curator Keychange, Re:Balance, When In Manchester and Make Noise all addressing the gender imbalance in music.

This year Off The Record will be spread across the Northern Quarter including: Jimmy’s, The Peer Hat, Soup Kitchen Gullivers, Night & Day, The Castle Hotel, Aatma and a new venue for 2018, Band On The Wall. All the venues are only a short walk from one another making it easily accessible.

There is a long list of handpicked bands performing at Off The Record this year, we have selected some of our favourites for you to ensure you see. You may need to do some running around to catch all the acts, however our top 10 picks are: Avalanche Party, Delights, Himalayas, Paris Youth Foundation, Rascalton, Red Rum Club, Seatbelts, SPQR, Stereo Honey and The Ninth Wave.

The conference will begin at 10am on Friday at Methodist Central Hall and the gigs will commence from 6pm onwards across 8 Northern Quarter venues. Following the conference, there will be networking drinks between 5-6pm at Band on the Wall where there are guest DJ’s Shell Zenner, Clint Boon and Bear Growls.

Don’t miss out on this years festival, tickets are available at and are from only £15.

Written by: Stuart Daley