wed 19/12/2018

blues

Springsteen on Broadway, Netflix review - one-man band becomes one-man show

When Bruce Springsteen’s one-man show opened at the Walter Kerr Theatre on New York’s West 48th Street in October last year it was only supposed to run for six weeks. This being Springsteen, however, demand proved almost limitless, so the season was...

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CD: J Mascis - Elastic Days

“I don't peak early / I don't peak at all,” goes the wryly self-aware line in the opening song here, “Take me to the Movies”. Thirty-five years since he started releasing records, Mascis isn't interested in peaking, progress or much else beyond...

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Sŵn Festival 2018 – a welcome return to form

It’s been a tough few years for Sŵn Festival. Once a genuine rival to fellow urban festivals Great Escape and Sound City, recent events have fluctuated between one-dayers and a string of ticketed gigs. 2018 marked the biggest change yet, but also a...

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Classic Albums: Amy Winehouse - Back to Black, BBC Four review - suffering turned into song

Formats are second nature to TV: the BBC and Eagle Rock’s Classic Albums will run and run. Like all formats, there’s always the risk that the medium becomes the message, and content suffers under the weight of form. But Classic Albums at least...

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CD: Madeleine Peyroux - Anthem

Peyroux made her name by channelling the sultry sensuality and soul of Billie Holiday and breathing new life into well-known songs written by others - notably Elliott Smith and Leonard Cohen.She still brings enchantment to covers, but has...

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Reissue CDs Weekly: Manfred Mann

Dress each of the band in the same clothes. Stand them in a line outside the EMI headquarters building on Manchester Square. Get the taller ones with glasses to stand at either end of the row. Put the other taller one in the middle. Have the pair of...

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Eric Clapton: A Life in 12 Bars, BBC Two review - blues, booze and dues

There’s undoubtedly a memorable film to be crafted from the life of guitar legend and grand old survivor Eric Clapton – for instance, Melvyn Bragg made a very good South Bank Show about him in 1987 – but the longer this one goes on, the less it has...

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CD: Beth Rowley - Gota Fría

Gota Fría, or “cold drop”, is a Spanish weather phenomenon associated with violent rainstorms, when high pressure has caused a pocket of cold air to dissociate itself from the warmer clouds. Meteorologists, please excuse my basic and probably...

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Robert Gordon: Memphis Rent Party review - a fast-moving Mississippi anthology

“There’s a rhythm in the air around Memphis, there always has been,” Carl Perkins once said. "I don't know what it is, but it's magic." The city on the Mississippi lives up to its musical heritage with performance venues aplenty, and a host of...

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Jazz FM Awards 2018 - a banner year for Ezra Collective

Hosted by Jazz FM presenters Chris Philips and Jez Nelson on UNESCO’s International Jazz Day, rising stars and international icons were honoured at the fifth Jazz FM Awards on Monday night.A Grammy winner earlier this year for her...

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CD: Owen Broder - Heritage

An album that enchants and surprises in equal measure, Heritage sees US sax player and composer Owen Broder explore the full gamut of American roots music – from blues and Appalachian folk to bluegrass and spirituals – through the prism of modern...

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Lisa Halliday: Asymmetry review - unconventional and brilliant

Lisa Halliday’s striking debut novel consists of three parts. The first follows the blooming relationship between Alice and Ezra (respectively an Assistant Editor and a Pulitzer Prize-winning writer) in New York; the middle section comprises a...

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