thu 17/08/2017

pop music

CD: Dent May - Across the Multiverse

As the title and Seventies-style cover image indicate, Across the Multiverse is knowing. Though the “Across the Universe” reference nods to The Beatles, it is the spirit of the Alessi Brothers, Hall & Oates, Harry Nilsson, Van Dyke Parks and...

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CD: Lucky Soul – Hard Lines

We are living, I think it’s fair to say, in troubled times. That is, if we’re living at all by the time of publication. Putting aside, for a second, the sabre-rattling of two monstrous egos, there is a need, in such dark days, of some light....

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CD: Rat Boy - SCUM

At the start of 2016 shouty Essex bedroom musician Jordan Cardy – AKA Rat Boy – was on all those media tastemaker lists of stars about to imminently explode. Maybe he’s been in major label development hell since. His debut album’s been a long time...

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Camp Bestival 2017 review - family festival drenched but exuberant

Camp Bestival 2017 was defined by the weather and how everyone reacted to it. DJ-impresario Rob Da Bank’s family festival, which reached its tenth edition this year, took place, as ever, on the Lulworth Estate in Dorset. However, where the previous...

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Kendal Calling, Lowther Deer Park review - a mini-Glastonbury of the border lands

Kendal Calling is a lovely festival. Charmingly misnamed – it’s set 30 miles from Kendal in Lowther Deer Park, a couple of miles from Penrith, in the northern Lakes – it takes place over four days in spectacularly beautiful Cumbrian countryside. It...

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CD: Girl Ray - Earl Grey

Girl Ray. Man Ray. Geddit? Earl Grey, the debut album from London female three-piece Girl Ray isn’t as freewheeling as the art of the man whose name they rework, but it is strikingly reminiscent of a particular strand of introspective 1980’s British...

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Queer as Art, BBC Two review - showbusiness and the gay revolution

Part of the BBC's Gay Britannia season, here was a programme fulfilling what it said on the tin: prominent LGBTQ (when will all these expanding acronyms cease to confuse us all) figures narrating, examining, discussing, analysing, letting it...

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Reissue CDs Weekly: Marylebone Beat Girls, Milk of the Tree

Between them, Marylebone Beat Girls and Milk of the Tree cover the years 1964 to 1973. Each collects tracks recorded by female singers: whether credited as solo acts, fronting a band or singer-songwriters performing self-penned material. That the...

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12 Stone Toddler, Green Door Store, Brighton review – experimentalism can still be pop

Ten years ago Brighton band 12 Stone Toddler burst onto the scene with two off-the-wall albums of madly inventive pop-rock. They then vamoosed back out of existence. Now they’re back, preparing a third album for the Freshly Squeezed label, and...

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CD: Lana Del Rey - Lust For Life

Lana Del Rey is hard to suss. Her cinematic plasticity is part of her appeal, yet it’s also what makes her difficult to love. One thing she cannot be accused of is laziness. For a star of her stature, she’s fairly pumping out music, with this...

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CD: Arcade Fire – Everything Now

If you consider the fanciful notion that Arcade Fire are a kind of Canadian art house Dexys Midnight Runners who have substituted strained angsty soul for strained angsty rock, then the title track of their new album is their “Come On Eileen”. It’s...

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CD: The Vamps – Night and Day (Night Edition)

Watching the YouTube clips that accompany the release of the Vamps’ third album, Night and Day (Night Edition), it becomes immediately apparent how keen they are to come across as a "real" band. They talk eloquently about the writing process and are...

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