Pop

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…

The sound of pop eating itself and throwing up: A.G. Cook’s Apple reviewed

3 October 2020 9:00 am

Grade: A The future, then. The sound of pop eating itself, throwing up into a bag and then getting a…

More mimsy soft rock from Cat Stevens: Tea for the Tillerman 2 reviewed

26 September 2020 9:00 am

Grade: B– Time has been kind to Cat Stevens’s reputation — his estrangement from the music business and rad BAME…

Virtuosic but slight – always prog’s problem: The Pineapple Thief's latest reviewed

19 September 2020 9:00 am

Grade: B– Of all the various subdivisions in that wheezing and crippled phenomenon that we call rock music, prog has…

There's scarcely a dull track: Deep Purple's Whoosh! reviewed

15 August 2020 9:00 am

Grade: B+ Less deep purple than a pleasant mauve. Ageing headbangers will note a lack of the freneticism that distinguished…

'Cocaine addiction is time-consuming': the rise and fall of Kevin Rowland and Dexys

8 August 2020 9:00 am

Michael Hann talks to Kevin Rowland about Dexys, insecurity and the cocaine years

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:…

Ranges from the slight to the first-rate: Neil Young’s Homegrown reviewed

11 July 2020 9:00 am

Grade: B+ Neil Young has been mining his own past very profitably for a long time now, disinterring a seemingly…

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…

The festivalisation of TV

27 June 2020 9:00 am

Televising Glastonbury has changed the festival, and in turn transformed television, says Graeme Thomson

Contains the loveliest new song I've heard in decades: Bob Dylan's new album reviewed

27 June 2020 9:00 am

Grade: A ‘Rough’ in terms of the mostly spoken vocals, but only ‘rowdy’ if you’re approaching your 80th birthday, which…

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.…

As a lyricist, Ian Dury had few equals in the 20th century

13 June 2020 9:00 am

The National Theatre’s programme of livestreamed shows continues with the Donmar’s 2014 production of Coriolanus starring Tom Hiddleston. The play…

The power of cheap music: pop podcast round-up

13 June 2020 9:00 am

Noël Coward was so right that his words have become a cliché: it is indeed extraordinary how potent cheap music…

The problem with mystery podcasts like Wind of Change

6 June 2020 9:00 am

Did the US secretly write a power ballad in order to bring down the Soviet Union? That’s the question behind…

Skates on the edge of parody: The 1975's Notes on a Conditional Form reviewed

6 June 2020 9:00 am

Grade: B+ Just what you wanted. An opening track that matches banal piano noodling to an address by Greta Thunberg.…

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…

Beautiful voice, pretentious album: Fiona Apple’s Fetch the Bolt Cutters reviewed

9 May 2020 9:00 am

Grade: C+ Where did they all come from, the quirky yet meaningful rock chicks who don’t have a decent song…

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…

The musical benefits of not playing live

18 April 2020 9:00 am

Many performers hated playing live. But freed from the stage they often made their best and wildest work, argues Graeme Thomson

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…

Grimly compelling: The Whitney Houston Hologram Tour reviewed

14 March 2020 9:00 am

‘No matter what they take from me,’ sang Whitney Houston towards the end of a peculiar evening in Hammersmith, ‘they…

The last great purveyors of a vanishing art form: Green Day’s Fathers of All... reviewed

7 March 2020 9:00 am

Grade: B+ It is an eternal mystery to me why Britain has never had much time for power pop, seeing…