sat 07/12/2019

pop music

CD: Liam Payne - LP1

Liam Payne is a Simon Cowell-manufactured pop star worth tens of millions off the back of music that’ll be regarded in a few years’ time much as the Bay City Rollers or Curiosity Killed The Cat are regarded now. Aesthetically an easy target, then,...

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CD: Coldplay - Everyday Life

For all they've inspired swathes of the most crushingly mundane music of the modern age from Sheeran on down, Coldplay have always been at their best at their most grandiose. That is, when they shake off Chris Martin's I'm-a-normal-bloke schtick and...

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CD: Beck - Hyperspace

Beck stands on the front cover of his new album Hyperspace with a vintage Toyota and Japanese text resplendent above. It’s the perfect scene setter for an album you could easily imagine soundtracking a midnight drive through Tokyo. Or if the lyrics...

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CD: Celine Dion - Courage

Of 2019’s pop culture phenomena, the critical reappraisal of Céline Dion as an international treasure is one of the most delightful. It’s been six years since the Quebecois singer last released an English language album, a period in which she closed...

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theartsdesk on Vinyl 54: The Beatles, Prince, Kid Acne, Nirvana, Teebs, Monty Python, Pulp and more

Without further ado, slightly delayed by the sheer volume of releases at this year time of year, here is the latest edition of theartsdesk on Vinyl. You will not find a more extensive monthly report on the goodies newly available on plastic anywhere...

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Reissue CDs Weekly: Yesterday Has Gone - The Songs of Teddy Randazzo

“It's Gonna Take a Miracle” just missed out on a mainstream US Top 40 placing after The Royalettes issued it as a single in June 1965. But the song had staying power. In 1971 Laura Nyro covered it, choosing it as the title track for the album she...

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CD: The Script - Sunsets & Full Moons

Massively successful Irish trio The Script could, loosely speaking, be called a rock band. But they aren’t really, are they? Their sixth album is an indictment of the kind of music they play. It’s packed with over-produced post-Coldplay anthem-pop...

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CD: Pumarosa - Devastation

Pumarosa picked the perfect time of year to launch their second album into the world: its skittish drums, claustrophobic melodies and haunted vocals are the perfect soundtrack to witching season. But the horrors that inspired Devastation are far...

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Lisa Stansfield, Royal Albert Hall - mutual Affection, 30 years on

Rochdale boasts quite a number of star turns but those that spring readily to mind are William Walton, Andy Kershaw, Barb Jungr, Gracie Fields and Lisa Stansfield. And here’s a good pub quiz question: what, apart from Rochdale, links Gracie and Lisa...

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Charli XCX, SWG3, Glasgow - stripped of the gimmicks, but still the whole package

Considered logically, releasing an album as heavy on guest features as Charli XCX’s newest should present particular logistical problems when it comes to recreating the tracks on tour. Charli’s approach is the opposite: no gimmicks or trickery, just...

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Reissue CDs Weekly: The Kinks - Arthur or the Decline and Fall of the British Empire

Arthur or the Decline and Fall of the British Empire hasn’t had the stratospheric levels of praise as the preceding Kinks album, 1968’s The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society. Yet in the band’s narrative, it’s probably more important...

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CD: Foals - Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost Part 2

Foals, the band with a trademark sound characterised by the African-style intricate interplay of rhythm rather than lead guitars, returns with what amounts to the second half of a double album. The first half was released last spring, and this new...

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