albums

The death of the live album

23 October 2021 9:00 am

Next week The The release The Comeback Special, a 24-track live album documenting the band’s concert at the Royal Albert…

The best recordings of the Goldberg Variations

2 October 2021 9:00 am

I sometimes think the classical record industry would collapse if it weren’t for the Goldberg Variations. Every month brings more…

Hugely unmemorable: Billie Eilish's Happier Than Ever reviewed

14 August 2021 9:00 am

Grade: C+ Time to get the razor out again — Billie’s back. The slurred and affected can’t-be-arsed-to-get-out-of-bed vocals. The relentless,…

When musical collaborations go right – and when they go horribly wrong

7 August 2021 9:00 am

Big Red Machine release their second album later this month. It’s a fine name for ten tonnes of agricultural apparatus…

Is there anyone more irritating and stupid than Bobby Gillespie?

10 July 2021 9:00 am

Grade: B– Is there anyone in rock music more irritating and stupid than Bobby Gillespie? The rawk’n’roll leather-jacketed self-mythologiser. The…

Whiny, polite and beautiful: Kings of Convenience's Peace or Love reviewed

3 July 2021 9:00 am

Grade: A– The problem with Norwegians is that they are so relentlessly, mind-numbingly pleasant. Well, OK, not Knut Hamsun or…

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…

A new recording throws fresh light on Mahler's puzzling Tenth Symphony

12 June 2021 9:00 am

There are many Symphonies No. 10 by Gustav Mahler, or none. The situation is rare, if not unique, in the…

'Germans thought we couldn't play': Irmin Schmidt, of Krautrock pioneers Can, interviewed

5 June 2021 9:00 am

Krautrock pioneer Irmin Schmidt talks to Graeme Thomson about taking risks, playing badly and ignoring the Brits

‘My voice is a curse’: Gary Numan interviewed

29 May 2021 9:00 am

Steve Morris talks to Gary Numan about luck, plane-spotting and Asperger’s

The Byrds without the drugs: Teenage Fanclub's Endless Arcade reviewed

22 May 2021 9:00 am

Grade: B– Advancing age has smoothed the edges of Bellshill’s finest lads, once — back in the early 1990s —…

‘I’m not interested in moral purity’: St Vincent interviewed

15 May 2021 9:00 am

Michael Hann talks to St Vincent about Sheena Easton, Stalin and performing in five-inch heels

Josquin changed musical history – why don't we hear more of him?

8 May 2021 9:00 am

Stepping into the Sistine Chapel, the choir loft is probably the last thing you’d notice. ‘Loft’ is, frankly, a stretch…

Tom Jones is as nuanced a vocalist as Ian Paisley

8 May 2021 9:00 am

Grade: C Revisionism has been extraordinarily kind to Tom Jones, ever since he barked his way through Prince’s ‘Kiss’ with…

Demi Lovato makes Taylor Swift resemble Dostoevsky

17 April 2021 9:00 am

Grade: Z If you wish to experience the full hideousness of Now, of our current age, condensed into one awful…

In Chet Baker's albums you can hear America’s romantic self-image curdling

6 March 2021 9:00 am

The thing to remember about Chet Baker, an old acquaintance says of the errant jazz musician in Deep In A…

'I like upsetting people': Steven Wilson interviewed

27 February 2021 9:00 am

Michael Hann talks to the cult rock star Steven Wilson about why it’s harder to write a pop song than prog

The two composers who defined British cinema also wrote inspired operas

20 February 2021 9:00 am

It’s my new lockdown ritual. Switch on the telly, cue up the menu and scroll down to where the vintage…

From bad joke to 21st-century classic: the best recordings of Korngold’s Violin Concerto

13 February 2021 9:00 am

Erich Korngold was what you might call an early adopter. As a child prodigy in Habsburg Vienna, he’d astonished the…

A criminally underrated songwriter: Matthew Sweet’s Catspaw reviewed

6 February 2021 9:00 am

Grade: A– The early 1990s were a lovely time for rock music: Beck, Sparklehorse, Sugar, Green on Red and Royal…

Proudly ridiculous and wholly glorious: KLF's Solid State Logik reviewed

30 January 2021 9:00 am

Grade: A What a miracle the KLF were: an elaborate practical joke at the expense of the music industry, seemingly…

'We knew there was greatness in these songs': Steve Diggle of the Buzzcocks interviewed

16 January 2021 9:00 am

Graeme Thomson talks to Steve Diggle, front man of Buzzcocks, about orgasms, boredom and Pete Shelley

Hear the greatest Parsifal of our time sing like a Muppet: Jonas Kaufmann’s Christmas album reviewed

19 December 2020 9:00 am

In classical music circles, Christmas arrives with the overture to Handel’s Messiah. Or so they’ll tell you. In truth, festivities…

Make Status Quo sound like Stockhausen: AC/DC's Power Up reviewed

5 December 2020 9:00 am

Grade: C The fear is this: you’re wearing a leather jacket and hipster jeans and think you look cool, but…

Meet the front man of ‘the most revolting band in the world’

28 November 2020 9:00 am

Michael Hann talks to Corey Taylor, front man of ‘the most revolting band in the world’, about PTSD, Donald Trump and life after alcoholism