sat 24/08/2019

1980s

The Specials, Margate Winter Gardens review - ska legends passionate and on-point

Here they come again – the band most adept at capturing the mood of an era in catchy, critical three-minute songs. Just at the very point we need them most, the original ska-punk popsters surface and their message is as deeply relevant as it was...

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Andy Hamilton, Brighton Festival 2019 review - gently amusing night of reminiscence

Taking place at the Theatre Royal, Andy Hamilton’s show is entitled An Evening with… rather than a straight stand-up and mainly consists of the comedy writer/performer and gameshow regular answering audience questions. During the first half this is...

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theartsdesk on Vinyl 49 - Part 1: Keith Richards, Asian Dub Foundation, Popul Vuh, Nirvana, Cage the Elephant and more

Due to exciting matters beyond theartsdesk on Vinyl’s control there’s been a slight delay to this month’s edition but, never fear, to ensure we cover all that’s juicy, we’re doing a special two-volume version, with Part 2 coming next week. Watch...

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CD: Whitesnake - Flesh & Blood

Whitesnake were always the most absurdly priapic of the successful Eighties heavy rockers. It was therefore with some glee that this writer approached their 13th studio album. In the snowflake age, where offence is taken at the slightest politically...

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Chernobyl, Sky Atlantic review - a glimpse of Armageddon

“I take it the safety test was a failure,” remarked Viktor Bryukhanov, director of Ukraine’s Chernobyl nuclear power station. You could say that again. The catastrophic explosions at the Vladimir I Lenin plant on 26 April 1986, caused by a safety...

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Other People's Money, Southwark Playhouse review - onetime Off Broadway hit retains its sting

Deft and funny and nicely cast, what's not to like about Other People's Money, the era-defining Jerry Sterner play in revival at Southwark Playhouse? The play's 1989 premiere Off Broadway allowed for a contemporary skewering of the roaring,...

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Test Dept, Studio 9294 review - still furious after all these years

Back in the early Eighties, Test Dept were the most radical musical force in London. Their live sound, never truly captured in its intensity on a series of early cassette recordings, built out of tape cut-ups and pulverising rhythms on salvaged...

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DVD/Blu-ray: Pet Shop Boys - Inner Sanctum

Pet Shop Boys are never shy of producing stylishly conceived fan mementos. Coming not long after Faber & Faber’s hardback collection of Neil Tennant’s lyrics, this four-disc set is just such a slice of lovingly rendered memorabilia. After well...

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Reissue CDs Weekly: Terry Allen

Torso Hell tells the story of an American soldier whose limbs were blown off in Vietnam. Amazingly, he and his buddies survived, and in the ensuing medical chaos his arms and legs were re-attached to them rather than him. The narrator says “At the...

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theartsdesk Q&A: Bananarama

Bananarama are one of the most successful girl groups of all time. Consisting of Sara Dallin and Keren Woodward, the band’s third original member Siobhan Fahey left in 1988 to form Shakespears Sister. The trio reunited in 2017 for a tour but new...

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CD: Bananarama - In Stereo

And then there were two... again. Following on from the Original Line-Up tour, Bananarama are back to the core duo of Sara Dallin and Keren Woodward for their first album in 10 years. If it is true that co-founding member Siobhan Fahey’s 1988...

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Reissue CDs Weekly: Losing Touch With My Mind

It begins with The Stone Roses’ “Don’t Stop”, the fourth track from their 1989 debut long player. A backwards though thoroughly remixed version of “Waterfall”, the album’s preceding track, it enthusiastically pushes the button labelled “psychedelic...

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