First date of the NME Carling Awards Tour kicks off the Brats celebrations...

The seventh NME CARLING AWARDS TOUR started in suitably controversial fashion last night (Sunday January 21), when JJ72 contemplated pulling out of the gig at GLASGOW QMUafter an injury to drummer FERGAL MATTHEWS.

He sustained a twisted ankle while jumping off

the stage after a warm-up gig at Derby University the previous night –

subsequently spending five hours in casualty.

JJ72 opted to continue – with singer Mark Greaney playing a solo acoustic performance and Amen moving up to headliners – after flying in a substitute

drummer, Glen Rowe, as a replacement.

As soon as Greaney left the stage, he headed for a Glasgow rehearsal studio to break in Rowe (a friend from a London rehearsal studio) for what’s expected to be the next week of


Matthews – who was present in Glasgow on crutches – is scheduled to be

fit again for the Oxford show on January 29. At the time of going to press, the running order for the next NME Carling Awards gig at Newcastle University tonight (Monday January 22)

hadn’t been decided.

The NME Carling Awards Tour, featuring JJ72, Amen, Alfie and Starsailor will call at:

Newcastle University (22)

Leeds Metropolitan University (23)

Sheffield University (25)

Liverpool University (26)

Manchester University (27)

Oxford Brookes University (29)

Leicester De Montfort University (30)

Norwich UEA (31)

Cardiff University (February 2)

Bristol University (3)

London Astoria (4)

For tickets ring the NME 24-Hour Ticketline on 0870 1 663663. Calls are charged at national standard rate.