sun 23/01/2022

Scotland

Starsailor, SWG3, Glasgow review - nostalgic comfort to satisfy the faithful

When Starsailor arrived onstage, they did so to the somewhat odd walk-on music of one of their biggest hits, with a remix of “Good Souls” blaring out and an early sing-a-long underway as a result. Perhaps that was appropriate, as this evening was...

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MacMillan Christmas Oratorio, LPO, Elder, RFH review – a new star for the season

The shadow of the cross falls over James MacMillan’s manger. You may come for his work’s consoling, even transporting, beauty and mystery. It’s there in abundance in his new Christmas Oratorio. Yet what may grip hardest are his passages of crashing...

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Paul Weller, Barrowland, Glasgow review - Modfather holding back father time with old and new tricks

There was a brief lapse in this lengthy set when Paul Weller stood up from the piano, walked towards centre stage and then pivoted back the way he came, having realised he was moving a song too early. “That’s the trouble with getting old, you forget...

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Kim, RSNO, Stockhammer, Usher Hall, Edinburgh review - bold programming survives a replacement

What happens in an orchestra when your designated conductor for three gigs at the end of the week phones in with Covid on Monday morning? By Monday afternoon, when he was writing his introduction to the programme notes for this concert, Alistair...

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The Jesus and Mary Chain, Barrowland, Glasgow review - Scottish siblings still the loudest gang in town

There is unquestionably a more mellow side to the Jesus and Mary Chain these days, even when reviving their most ferocious glories from the past. Prior to launching this two-halved set, comprising their 1987 classic Darklands to begin with and a...

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Shetland, Series 6, BBC One review - too many cooks and too many crooks

The population of the Shetland archipelago is only about 23,000 (similar to Broadstairs or Amersham), though judging by the adventures of DI Jimmy Perez, an extraordinarily large percentage of them harbour dark secrets or murderous tendencies. BBC...

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Sports Team, SWG3, Glasgow review - entertaining, but not always original

It may go against rock n’ roll cliché, but occasionally there is merit to good time keeping for a band. Lucia and the Best Boys saw their support slot in their home town of Glasgow reach an ignominious ending when they were cut off a song early,...

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Macbeth, Almeida Theatre review – vivid, but much too long

Remembering the months of lockdown, I can’t be the only person to thrill to this play’s opening lines, “When shall we three meet again?”, a phrase evocative enough to be borrowed as the first line of this year’s Wolf Alice album, Blue Weekend....

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Maximo Park, Saint Luke's and the Winged Ox, Glasgow - indie veterans still have fire in their bellies

Time waits for no band, as Maximo Park’s lively singer Paul Smith opined early into his band’s set. “I am young and I am lost” he declared during "The Coast Is Always Changing"’s jangly guitar-pop, before drily admitting afterwards that he might...

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Nicola Benedetti, Barbican Hall review – from Bach to the Highlands via New Orleans

If a standard-sized recital hall can be a lonely place for a solo violinist, playing an auditorium of Barbican dimensions must feel like crossing a desert under pitiless spotlight sun. Happily, Nicola Benedetti’s prowess as a communicator means that...

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The Story of Looking review – bedside musings on how and what we see

Mark Cousins, the multi-award winning director of this strange film, is lying in bed watching Ray Charles speaking on the Dick Cavett Show in 1972. The singer went blind in childhood; how would he respond if offered the chance to see again? “I might...

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Vigil, BBC One review - murder most watery

Submarines have delivered some memorable on-screen performances, from Run Silent, Run Deep to The Hunt for Red October. On the other hand, we must not overlook the treasurably idiotic BBC series The Deep, which featured a submarine with a “moon pool...

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