thu 18/07/2019

New Music Interviews

Q&A Special: Composer Scanner

ismene Brown

Over this weekend the spaces of London's Royal Opera House will be transformed by strange sounds, vaguely operatic, vaguely foresty, thoroughly chilled. The ambient atmospheres will be made by Scanner, who calls himself a “cultural engineer” and has made sounds for morgues, dances, Philips wake-up lights and chill-out rooms in clubs, during an extraordinarily eclectic career that seems to exist somewhere on the very edge of technology.

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theartsdesk Q&A: Jo Bartlett of the Green Man Festival

joe Muggs The Green Man himself at the 2009 festival

The Green Man festival takes place this coming weekend at the Glanusk estate near Abergavenny in the rolling hills of the Brecon Beacons. What begun in 2003 as a glorified gig for the husband and wife duo It's Jo And Danny has become the very epitome of the 21st-century “boutique festival” - indeed is very possibly responsible for that concept itself.

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theartsdesk Q&A: Musician Dan Treacy

Thomas H Green

It has been said that Dan Treacy (b. 1960) is the TV Personalities in the same way that Mark E Smith is The Fall. Certainly he has been the sole consistent member since they appeared in 1978 with the single "14th Floor" and subsequent cult hit "Part Time Punks".

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theartsdesk Q&A: Musician Gareth Campesinos!

Rose Dennen Hold on now, youngsters: Los Campesinos! briefly stand still

Los Campesinos! are revelling in deserved notoriety on both sides of the pond. Their first two albums, Hold on Now, Youngster and We Are Beautiful, We Are Doomed, saw Los Campesinos! lumped in with the twee-pop tag of bands like Bearsuit, Tiger Trap and The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, but new release Romance is Boring sees the eight-piece delve into more lush and experimental realms. Their touch is more technical and their approach much more mature. It's as if...

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Q&A Special: Musician Ben Drew, aka Plan B

Thomas H Green

Ben Drew, who records as Plan B, is busy on the promotional rounds. He has spent the day at the BBC's Maida Vale Studios being interviewed by Fearne Cotton and others for TV and radio, and performed his new single "She Said" as well as an ebullient cover of Charles & Eddie's "Would I Lie to You?" He's accompanied by a nine-piece band, including three gospel backing singers, and is as sharp-suited as the promo photos you see here.

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theartsdesk Q&A: Mariza, Diva of Fado

graeme Thomson

Marisa dos Reis Nunes (b. 1973) is an African-Portuguese singing superstar whose music has deep roots in fado, Portugal’s dark-blue, intensely poetic national music, but which over the course of five albums has gradually taken on inflections of jazz, blues and bossa nova. Born in Mozambique to an African mother and a Portuguese father, Mariza (like all good divas she has long since dispensed with meddlesome surname, converting along the way the soft S in her forename to a zippy Z) grew up in...

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theartsdesk Q&A: Tim Lawrence

joe Muggs

Tim Lawrence is an author and academic, whose musical studies have led him from the dance scene of the 1990s to researching New York's disco scene – his Love Saves the Day was the first and remains the definitive history of the music, history and politics of disco – and then to the singular figure of Arthur Russell.

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theartsdesk Q&A: DJ Mary Anne Hobbs

joe Muggs

Immediately following the death of radio DJ John Peel in 2004, it became clear very rapidly that there was no obvious heir apparent. With so many specialist shows on the station, nobody ran the full gamut of leftfield and underground music in the same way that Peel had. But if anyone comes close, it is Mary Anne Hobbs.

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theartsdesk Q&A: Guitarist Wilko Johnson

Nick Hasted

In Oil City Confidential, Julien Temple’s exhilarating new documentary on Dr Feelgood, the first thing you’ll see is the spidery, alien movements of the band’s guitarist Wilko Johnson, as he looks out over their Essex heartland, Canvey Island. The film is a sort of prequel to Temple’s Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten, digging into the early 1970s pub rock scene the Feelgoods ruled with their hard, sharp R’n’B before punk, lessons learned, stole the stage.

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theartsdesk Q&A: DJ Kode 9

joe Muggs

Glasgow-born, south London resident Steve Goodman – better known to discerning lovers of modern music as Kode 9 – has a unique and privileged position in relation to the ever-shifting UK dance music underground.  In the mid 90s he formed part of the slightly cultish Cybernetic Culture Research Unit (CCRU) founded by Sadie Plant and Nick Land at the University of Warwick, where he gained a PhD in philosophy.

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