tue 25/06/2019

London

CD: Naomi Bedford & Paul Simmonds - Singing It All Back Home: Appalachian Ballads of English and Scottish Origin

Outside the Palladium a couple of months back for Joan Baez’s farewell, I was given a flyer for this album – by Naomi Bedford herself it turns out. We had a brief chat which left me with a good feeling about the project and I was disappointed...

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Kuusisto, Philharmonia, Rouvali, RFH review - new principal conductor steps up

Last night saw the official unveiling of 33-year-old Finn Santtu-Matias Rouvali as Principal Conductor Designate of the Philharmonia Orchestra, an appointment that has been widely welcomed, not least on theartsdesk. And while I enjoyed Rouvali’s...

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CD: Peter Perrett - Humanworld

June 2017 witnessed a musical miracle, of sorts – the resurrection to recording and brilliant songwriting of Peter Perrett, The Only Ones’ singer, songwriter, and architect of his own ghoulish entombment in a Gothic south east London pile, fielding...

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The Strokes, All Points East Festival review - let them entertain you

Back in 2001, after the release of their debut album This Is It, The Strokes weren’t just the most fashionable band in the world, they were also regarded as the group that could “save rock”. That was asking quite a lot.This Is It was 36 minutes of...

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The Waterboys, Roundhouse review - energetic delights

Was it imagination or did The Waterboys’ audience at London’s Roundhouse, invited to sing along to “The Nearest Thing to Hip”, really sing extra-loud and lustily on the line “in this shithole”? On a momentous day that seemed to push Britain further...

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Summer of Rockets, BBC Two review - pride and prejudice in 1950s Britain

Hallelujah! At last the BBC have commissioned a Stephen Poliakoff series that makes you want to come back for episode two (and hopefully all six), thanks to a powerful cast making the most of some perceptively-written roles.His most recent efforts,...

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Heathrow: Britain's Busiest Airport, ITV review - 80 million passengers but not much action

It’s remarkable that this meandering observational documentary about the five square mile airport west of London has stretched to a fifth series. Heathrow may have 77,000 staff and expect 80 million passengers to pass through this year, but that...

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Hatton Garden, ITV review - ancient burglars bore again

Have we passed peak Hatton Garden? It’s now four years since a gang of old lags pulled off the biggest heist of them all. They penetrated a basement next door to a safe-deposit company, drilled through the wall, and made off with many millions quids...

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Benjamin Grosvenor, Barbican review - virtuosity at its classiest

It’s 15 years since Benjamin Grosvenor first strolled onto our TV screens as a prodigiously gifted child in the BBC Young Musician Competition. Today he is a self-possessed young man of 26, in his element on the concert platform, yet without a hint...

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The Firm, Hampstead Theatre review - ferociously funny exploration of gang culture

We are living in a time when gang culture rips and roars its way down London streets, and through newspaper headlines, at increasingly alarming levels. Recent news reports revealed how a surge in knife and gun crime is leading to more young black...

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Nouvelle Vague, Islington Assembly Hall review - the dreamy bossa nova collective return

When you’re off to Islington’s beautiful Assembly Hall for an evening of slinky French bossa nova, it’s something of a surprise to find the Gallic groovers preceded by a droll Brummie singer who brings to mind a cross between Billy Bragg and Richard...

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CD: Loyle Carner - Not Waving, But Drowning

When poetic London MC Loyle Carner first appeared a couple years ago he was hailed for his fresh take on UK hip hop. Compared to the street-centric machismo of much grime music, he offered a welcome insight into a more sensitive 21st century...

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