Despite their early angular and dissonant sound developing into the sort of epic, R.E.M. inspired rock that should have been right in my wheelhouse, Idlewild seemed to pass me by. Over the last couple of years though, I have found myself listening to quite a lot of singer Roddy Woomble’s solo work, with Before the Ruin (the album he recorded with John McCusker and Kris Drever) being a particular favourite.Read More
This review of the Friday line-up at Drumlanrig Castle’s Electric Fields festival is predicated on the immutable fact that Teenage Fanclub are the best band in the world. Now, this might seem like a bold statement, but it’s simply a scientific fact and I can prove it on a pocket calculator. I had been really excited when the Glasgow band announced dates for a UK tour promoting the recent re-release of their creation era albums. However, I became increasingly dismayed when I realised that I wouldn’t be able to attend to any of the shows due to work commitments and holidays. Luckily salvation came in the form of the Electric Fields festivals Friday line-up. The Fannies would be enjoying a stellar bill that also featured Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds and The Coral.Read More
From the opening strains of Sugarboy, St. Vincent commands attention. Annie Clark and her band – bassist Toko Yasuda, keys player Daniel Mintseris and drummer Matt Johnson – shuffle onstage in darkness before being bathed from behind in dazzling light. Clark is a style icon and has obviously put a lot of work into the visual aspect of her stage show. The quartet is arranged in a modular fashion, each one in front of a square lighting rig whilst giant, surreal video art is projected above the stage. The guys are dressed in weird Devo-style boiler suits, and with their helmet hair wigs, faceless masks and bulbous fabric noses, they are oddly reminiscent of the Doozer’s from Fraggle Rock. It’s disquieting… but in a good way.Read More
Writing this review has been a bit of a struggle. I’m generally not one of those music critics that likes to shit on other people’s work, but truth be told, this compendium of Johnny Cash’s unpublished ‘poems’ just doesn’t do it for me. This is all the more disappointing given that all throughout his career as a rebel country pioneer, Cash displayed a great way with words, earning himself a reputation as one of America’s greatest songwriters.Read More
I have to admit that when I agreed to review the Cook Strummer album The Fall, I genuinely thought it was a posthumous release of song that The Clash’s Joe Strummer had recorded with The Sex Pistols Drummer. Sometimes though mistakes can be quite fortuitous. When the post-punk synth sound of The Fall hit my eardrums I was, after an initial moment of confusion, pretty happy that my musical stupidity had brought the album to my attention.Read More
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