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Category Archives: Music


The Perpetual Undeath of Rock

 ‘Hey hey, my my, rock and roll can never die.’ Depending on your own tastes and cognitive biases, Neil Young’s famous lyric will now seem more prophetic than ever before – or profoundly misguided. Last week saw the release of U2’s Songs of Innocence in what Apple … Read more »

Calling out of context: The perennial appeal of Arthur Russell

When Arthur Russell died in 1992 at the age of forty, he did so in relative obscurity, having released four commercially unsuccessful albums and granted a single print interview: not exactly a promising oeuvre on which to build a legacy. Read more »

The carnival is over

Jabberwocky, scheduled to take place last weekend, was the kind of festival that wasn’t supposed to fail. Read more »

Why has Robin Thicke’s Paula flopped?

What, exactly, has caused Paula to sell so poorly that it has already positioned itself as this year’s most memorable flop? Read more »

Queering the Power: The Soft Pink Truth’s Why Do the Heathen Rage?

The Soft Pink Truth’s new album ‘Why Do the Heathen Rage’ demonstrates that despite their superficial differences, dance music and black metal have a lot in common. Read more »

Never Settled: The Knife’s Shaken-Up Versions

Making live electronic music engaging is a difficult task, and The Knife’s Silent Shout tour shows a band committed to breaking the visual cliché of performers standing still behind banks of electronic equipment. Read more »

Loving (and hating) Tori Amos

Tori Amos is hardly to blame for the existence of her fans’ expectations, nor for their disappointment when her work does not live up to them – but that doesn’t prevent that disappointment from feeling intensely personal. Read more »

Highbrow vs Lowbrow: Dan Golding defends Highbrow Music

The worst thing anyone ever did for classical music was label it ‘highbrow’. Just the words ‘classical music’ conjure up immovable preconceptions. Classical music is old, angry men in tops and tails. Classical music is stuffy and serious. Classical music doesn’t even let you clap when you want to. Read more »

Highbrow vs Lowbrow: Nikki Lusk defends Lowbrow Music

I’m going to let you in on a secret: lowbrow music is essential to the survival of the human species. Without pop music, none of us would be capable of finding somebody to love, and as a result, we’d all wither and die. Read more »

Still climbing the ladder to God: Swans’ To Be Kind

No band is quite as intense as Swans – a feat made all the more remarkable by the fact that its leader, chief songwriter, and sole constant member, Michael Gira, turned sixty this year, and that the band had been on a decade-long hiatus before reforming in 2010. Read more »