fri 19/07/2024

Americana

Album: AJ Lee & Blue Summit - City of Glass

In the world of popular music, tangential connections to success are profile-raising. They offer an immediate connection to an artist. It is beholden on me, then, despite not knowing it when I first enjoyed this album, to mention that rising Grammy...

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Album: John Moreland - Visitor

The mournful, lonesome voice of John Moreland from Bixby, Oklahoma, will be known by a few, but not many, in this country. The 12 songs on his latest album, Visitor, released on the Thirty Tigers label, should help to remedy that.Visitor is the...

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Album: Willie Nelson - The Border

At 91, Willie Nelson is about to tour the US with The Outlaws, AKA Minnesota youngster Bob Dylan, 83, the even younger Robert Plant, 75, with Alison Krauss, a mere 52, and 72-year old John Mellencamp (plus a trio of 21st century artists in Celisse,...

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Between Riverside and Crazy, Hampstead Theatre review - race, religion and rough justice

It’s often said that contemporary American playwrights are too polite, too afraid of giving offence. But this accusation can’t be levelled at Stephen Adly Guirgis, whose dramas – from Jesus Hopped the ‘A’ Train in 2002 to The Motherfucker in...

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Album: Ani DiFranco - Unprecedented Sh!t

Having moved out of her mother’s apartment aged 15 to become “an emancipated minor” and set up her own record label, Righteous Babe, just four years later, every step of Ani DiFranco’s life has been determinedly – some might say ferociously –...

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Album: Abigail Lapell - Anniversary

Anniversary is Canadian singer-songwriter Abigail Lapell’s sixth album (if we include last year’s lengthy EP of lullabies). Her success has not reached much beyond her native land, as is often the way with Canadian acts, but she’s a proven talent,...

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Album: Pokey LaFarge - Rhumba Country

Pokey LaFarge has always defied categorisation. He likened his 2020 album Rock Bottom Rhapsody to a mix tape, with elements of bluegrass, barrelhouse, doo-wop, jazz, rockabilly, country blues, the great American songbook and even hints of movie...

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The Comeuppance, Almeida Theatre review - remembering high-school high jinks

I’ve never been one for school reunions, but even if I had kept in touch with former classmates I think that American playwright Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’s The Comeuppance might, just might, lead me to reflect on the wisdom of revisiting the...

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theartsdesk on Vinyl 83: Deep Purple, Annie Anxiety, Ghetts, WHAM!, Kaiser Chiefs, Butthole Surfers and more

VINYL OF THE MONTHLondon Afrobeat Collective Esengo (Canopy)The weather has not been kind to the UK lately, pelting it daily with endless drizzle and gloom. So wrap your ears around this, a mini-album that will infuse any room with blazing sunshine...

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Album: Maggie Rogers - Don't Forget Me

For the past almost two years, Maggie Rogers has taken an unexpectedly special place in my heart and musical tastes. Upon reviewing her previous album, Surrender, because of the difference in style and sound to my usual tastes I was caught...

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Album: Aaron West and the Roaring Twenties - In Lieu of Flowers

Perfecting Ernest Hemingway’s advice that “a writer should create living people; people not characters”, In Lieu of Flowers sees Aaron West and the Roaring Twenties’ Dan Campbell invite fans back into the fictional universe of open-wound Aaron in a...

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Album: The Dead South - Chains & Stakes

There are few ways of describing the music of The Dead South – progressive bluegrass is my favourite because it's so meaningless to so many. By which I mean it doesn't matter what the genre, it's just good music, and that's all you need to know.I...

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