tue 23/04/2024

hip hop

Album: Jonny Drop • Andrew Ashong - The Puzzle Dust

As I sat down to write this review, the sun came out. It was a salutory reminder of the importance of context: where I’d previously thought “mmm, that’s pretty nice”, now it was more “mmmmmmm, that’s pretty niiiiiice!” That’s not just a suble...

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Album: High Llamas - Hey Panda

Hey Panda is unlike any previous High Llamas album. While the characteristic traces of late Sixties and early Seventies Beach Boys, Van Dyke Parks and Steely Dan are here, they have become melded with a sensibility lead-Llama Sean O’Hagan has...

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Album: Kim Gordon - The Collective

Some icons sit back and bask. Kim Gordon does not. She has occasionally intimated that her New York cool and relentless work rate may be down to a smidgeon of imposter syndrome, even after all her years on the frontline. Whatever the truth of it,...

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theartsdesk on Vinyl 82: Human League, Hawkwind, Roberta Flack, Kid Acne, Photek, Rudimentary Peni and more

VINYL OF THE MONTHMito y Comadre Guajirando (ZZK)Mito y Comadre are Guillermo Lares and Shana Comadre, a Bogota-based pair of Venezuelans whose debut album is produced by Christian Castagno (a man who’s more likely to be found helming outings by...

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Albums of the Year 2023: Janelle Monáe - The Age of Pleasure

It was a year of bleak and brutal conflict, ugly and stupid imposition of power, overt Fascism in the mainstream public sphere, decay of infrastructure and apocalyptic weather. So what better than a record of total pleasure? And Janelle Monáe’s...

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theartsdesk on Vinyl Christmas Special 2023: Aretha Franklin, Barbara Streisand, Oasis, Robb Johnson, Jimi Hendrix and more

Welcome to the annual seasonal one-off, in which theartsdesk on Vinyl dives into festive releases, as well as the boxsets and reissues that will make fine presents. Grab a glass of something and dive in!CHRISTMAS VINYL OF THE MONTHVarious Stax...

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Album: Burna Boy - I Told Them...

There’s been a lot of flak flying around this album already. It’s mainly been triggered by Burna Boy’s public activities which have included disparaging the wider Afrobeats music scene of West Africa, and some somewhat overcooked expressions of his...

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We Out Here Festival, Wimborne St Giles review: it's a family affair, and then some...

We Out Here Festival, now in its fifth year (and fourth edition, as 2020 was of course cancelled for Covid), has become an institution. Curated by jazz-centric veteran DJ Gilles Peterson and actualised by Noah Ball – best known for his role in...

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Album: Genesis Owusu - Struggler

There’s been a sense of anticipation around Ghanaian-Australian Genesis Owusu ever since his ebullient 2021 debut album Smiling with No Teeth. He won a bunch of Arias, Australia’s Grammys, but could he break internationally? He’s toured the US with...

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Album: Lunice - OPEN

There are whole books to be written – indeed, hopefully being written – on how hip hop has interacted with dance music culture in North America over the past decade plus. From the overblown mania of rap megastars jumping on David Guetta tracks in...

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Album: Steel Banglez - The Playlist

There is a truly fascinating story to be written about the hidden Punjabi influence on UK bass music. Maybe it’s natural for kids growing up with the huge booming sounds of dhol and tabla drums to gravitate to big bass speakers, but some of the most...

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The Great Escape Festival 2023, Brighton review - a vibrant dip into Day One

Brighton is writhing with music biz sorts. The Great Escape is here, the multi-venue festival that’s taken place here for over a decade-and-a-half, presenting bands from all over the world, most of them little known, at least in the UK. It takes...

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