wed 12/08/2020

2013

Television: 10 Top Performances from 2013

No definitive answers to what was "the best" of 2013 of course, and I daresay opinions will differ wildly. For instance, despite the plaudits showered on it elsewhere, I felt that Broadchurch stretched itself too thin after showing initial promise....

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Art: Top 10 exhibitions of 2013

Not an exhaustive list, but, in no particular order, these are the shows I'm still left thinking about as the year draws to a close. The best have opened my eyes to new ways of thinking about an artist. A few are still on. Try not to miss. And do...

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The 2013 "indie" videogame revolution

Art? Emotion? Intelligence? If you want proof that videogames can provide all three and far more, the burgeoning "indie" scene provided plenty of evidence this year. While mainstream games-makers continue to choose to drive towards photorealistic...

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Album of the Year: Bassekou Kouyate and Ngoni Ba - Jama Ko

Mali has been in the news this year: music was under serious threat from the fundamentalism that spread through the north of the country and ransacked parts of the ancient city of Timbuktu. The jihadists are hardly music-lovers and Mali’s creative...

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Album of the Year: John Fullbright - From the Ground Up

It's a happy coincidence that John Fullbright hails from Woody Guthrie's home town of Okemah, Oklahoma, but his debut album presents an artist who is far from being a mere clone of the fabled balladeer. A spin through the dozen tracks on From the...

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Album of the Year: Daft Punk - Random Access Memories

“Like the legend of the Phoenix…” So began the party song of this year, last year, next year, probably the year after.I always thought Daft Punk were overrated. The Nineties was a wondrous narco-techno rave, then along they came with their wah-wah...

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Album of the Year: Sons of Kemet - Burn

The Sons of Kemet’s peculiar forces of two drummers, tuba and reeds have been on the road for over two years now, their performances landing on an unsuspecting crowd like a petrol bomb on seasoned timber. With the tuba playing as part of both the...

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Album of the Year: Special Request - Soul Music

It's an understatement to say that the massive revival of fortunes of club music in the 2010s has had its ups and downs. It's been a time of chaotic glut, of excess and spectacle – thanks particularly to the American “EDM” (electronic dance music)...

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Album of the Year: Jason Isbell - Southeastern

In the right circles, Jason Isbell already has enough of a reputation as one of contemporary Americana’s finest songwriters - both solo and as part of the Drive-By Truckers - that for him to drop an album as subtly stunning as Southeastern shouldn’t...

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Album of the Year: Jonathan Wilson – Fanfare

It’s ironic that the album which has invited itself back onto the turntable more often than any other this year is wholly redolent of another time and place: the California of the early Seventies. Whatever the shortcomings of his live performance,...

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