Pop

How Trojan Records conquered the world

19 June 2021 9:00 am

When Trojan Records attempted to break into the United States music market in the early 1970s, it hit an insurmountable…

Wispy, gauzy beauty: This Is The Kit, Barbican, reviewed

5 June 2021 9:00 am

On the way home from This Is The Kit’s show at a socially distanced Barbican, I listened to Avalon by…

A perfect welcome back to live music: Sarathy Korwar at Kings Place reviewed

29 May 2021 9:00 am

There is a reason music writers tend to stick with music writing rather than transferring their manifold talents to the…

The sermons poked out of the songs like busted bed springs: Van Morrison livestream reviewed

15 May 2021 9:00 am

Over the decades, Van Morrison’s role within the tower of song has shifted from chief visionary officer to head of…

Watch kids go giddy in Niamey: Mdou Moctar live in Niger reviewed

1 May 2021 9:00 am

The other week someone posted on Twitter a link to a YouTube clip titled ‘Family Lotus and D.J. Cookin’ at…

A redemption song, conventionally sung: Sky's Tina reviewed

1 May 2021 9:00 am

It has never been easy for women in the music industry. Once upon a time the evidence was largely anecdotal.…

Moments of pure wonder: Folk Weekend Oxford reviewed

24 April 2021 9:00 am

Has any musical moment extended its tendrils in so many unexpected directions as the English folk revival of the mid-1960s?…

The songs are still as fresh and appetising as a hot loaf: The Lightning Seeds livestream reviewed

10 April 2021 9:00 am

One thing about a streamed festival is that the toilets are better than at the real thing. The other thing,…

Reminiscent of Roxy Music’s cocktail sound: The Weather Station reviewed

27 March 2021 9:00 am

One of the unforeseen consequences of the rise of streaming was a change in the very structure of the pop…

Revelatory and grubby: Framing Britney Spears reviewed

20 March 2021 9:00 am

The most headline-grabbing of these three pop docs was Framing Britney Spears, part of the New York Times Presents documentary…

The death of the mainstream band: Black Country, New Road reviewed

13 March 2021 9:00 am

Twitter was awash with mockery last week, after Adam Levine, the singer of the American group Maroon 5, was interviewed…

Epic prog rock without the widdly-woo solos: Mogwai at the Tramway reviewed

20 February 2021 9:00 am

You very possibly know the music of the Glaswegian band Mogwai, even if you don’t think you do. You might…

Makes me nostalgic for an era when music was more than a click away: Teenage Superstars reviewed

13 February 2021 9:00 am

In Teenage Superstars, a long and slightly exhausting documentary about the Scottish indie scene of the 1980s and ’90s, there…

One of the few genuine British visionaries at work today: Richard Dawson at the Barbican reviewed

31 October 2020 9:00 am

How hard must it be to make music that sounds like no one else? And how unrewarding, often, as well?…

There’s a magic to hearing music in such small audiences: Divine Comedy reviewed

24 October 2020 9:00 am

Three shows in a week! Why, it was just like the first week of March. There was, however, little of…

Spiky, sticky, silly: interviewing Van Morrison

29 August 2020 9:00 am

Q: ‘How would you define transcendence?’ A: ‘Well, how would you define it?’ I interviewed Van Morrison last year. (I’m…

The people who were idiots at gigs in early March are still idiots

1 August 2020 9:00 am

Is the world ready for the return of live rock music? On the evidence of the first gig in London…

The problem with livestreaming heavy metal? No moshpits

25 July 2020 9:00 am

There was only so long anyone could put up with the live musical performances of the early days of lockdown:…

Dysfunctional music for dysfunctional people: The Public Image is Rotten reviewed

4 July 2020 9:00 am

A star is born, but instead of emerging into the world beaming for the cameras, he spits and snarls and…

In defence of Prince’s late style

20 June 2020 9:00 am

In 1992 Prince released a single called ‘My Name Is Prince’. On first hearing it seemed appropriately regal. Cocky, even.…

Joyous and very, very funny: Beastie Boys Story reviewed

16 May 2020 9:00 am

The music of the Beastie Boys was entirely an expression of their personalities, a chance to delightedly splurge out on…

Livestream-hopping is just as irritating as being at a real festival

2 May 2020 9:00 am

The ghost of Samuel Beckett oversaw the Hip Hop Loves NY livestream last Thursday night. Time and time again its…

Felt longer than the lockdown itself: BBC1's One World – Together At Home reviewed

24 April 2020 11:00 pm

You have to admire the spirit of the organisers of last weekend’s One World: Together at Home concert. To put…

Taylor Swift is fascinating – but you really wouldn't want to be her

4 April 2020 9:00 am

There had been some question about whether Taylor Swift’s Netflix special would actually appear. Last year it seemed that the…

The magic of Bryan Ferry

21 March 2020 9:00 am

The accepted line about Bryan Ferry is that his is one of the greatest reinventions in English pop culture: Peter…