IF you are a fan of live music then there is a busy week ahead for you. And if you have a penchant for rock music in particular then it may seem as if Christmas has come early, such is the amount of hard hitting, guitar slinging, heavy four-four salvos bands will be firing off around town this week.

Bands like Limehouse Lizzy who can be found at The Victoria tonight. Not only one of the country’s hardest working live acts, according to PRS, but the closest thing you will get to seeing Phil Lynott and the boys in their heyday. If you are skeptical about tribute bands, this is the act that will change your mind.

If you want to take a more original rock route then Fury at Level III offer a big, sweeping and theatrical sound which takes classic templates and redesigns them for the modern audience in a sort of new, New Wave of British Heavy Metal style. Billed as joint headliner is Dakesis, a vocally soaring and musically dramatic take on old school metal and local support comes in the guise of Control The Storm.

At the other end of the sonic scale a plethora of acoustic players can be found scattered around town, with Mike Barham and his cider-soaked narratives at The Groves Company Inn, Bob Bowles’ soulful blues at The Beehive and at The Tuppenny you will find the globe-trotting Lisa Richards whose extensive travels inform her wonderful blend of folk, jazz and blues, with Emily Jane Sheppard in support.

Friday sees the charge of the hard and heavy continue with Revenged at The Groves Company Inn, a tribute to California’s progressive metallers Avenged Sevenfold, Swindon’s own Stat-X will be getting the night underway. Meanwhile at The Castle Down and Dirty continue to lay on a smorgasbord of rock styles, from the solid and filling fare to exotic titbits and everything in between.

Still on the rock radar but taking a more rootsy Americana line is Ragged Union, who can be found at The Rolleston, a band that effortlessly mixes less obvious selections from the likes of The Stones and Tom Petty with their own compositions and I challenge anyone to spot the join.

Further down the country road is The Great Western Tears, a band of acoustic country, blues and folk music weavers who are informed by the literary visions of Kerouac and Whitman as they are the music of Neil Young and Townes Van Zandt. Find them at The Beehive with Canute’s Plastic Army getting the crowd warmed up.

The Blind Lemon Blues Band do more than the title suggests, playing a range of rock, funk, reggae and even pop but always with their trade mark blues edge, they are at The Queen’s Tap and Get Carter are all about pop, rock and indie covers at The Victoria.

Level III is hosting its first Club Monkey night, aimed at bringing out of town rockabilly and old school rock’n’roll to a new audience and this first time out sets the benchmark very high indeed. 56 Killers bring a dash of hard-edged, rocking blues, Knocksville head for more raucous punkabilly territory and The Rocking Sinners offer up a punk’n’roll storm like no other. Three top original bands and some new musical blood for the Swindon circuit.

Saturday brings a flurry of tributes to big name acts. Bootleg Floyd celebrate the 40th anniversary of Animals by playing that album in its entirety, plus other favourites at Level III, Metallica Reloaded play a career wide selection from, arguably, LA’s most influential metallers at The Grove’s Company Inn and at The Queen’s Tap The Pistol Slapper Blues Band remind us of the brilliance of Rory Gallagher.

For something of a more scatter gun of styles and eras then both Reloaded at The Haydon Wick Club and No Middle Ground at Rolleston will tick the relevant boxes.

On Sunday you can catch even more rock and metal as Metal Gods deliver a tribute to the 80’s scene, at The Groves Company Inn and on Wednesday Awakening Savannah bring muscular rock with infectious melodies to The Victoria.