Kate Bush - Before The Dawn
“Before The Dawn was a theatrical extravaganza revolving around her two major ‘song cycles’: the Sky Of Honey disc of 2005’s Aerial and The Ninth Wave’s lengthy drowning from Hounds Of Love. An opening section featuring Bush – in magnificent voice throughout – veering from hawk-screech to sugar-lilt on Hounds Of Love and Running Up That Hill was as crowd-pleasing as it got.” Read the full review here.
Elephant Stone - Ship Of Fools
“Such is the broad sweep of psychedelia and its entrenchment in the rock canon that it’s been all too easy to forget the form’s pop origins. Clearly, as displayed on the fourth album from Canadian psyche-heads Elephant Stone, this is a situation to be rectified.” Read the full review here.
Thee Oh Sees - An Odd Entrances
“When it comes to the dual release of one rocked-up and one chilled-out album, Springsteen, Smashing Pumpkins and Nelly got it all wrong. According to San Franciscan garage oddballs Thee Oh Sees, the first one, August’s A Weird Exits, should be a psychedelic cross between Cradle Of Filth, Can and the MC5 that sounds like an evil blues-metal imp auditioning for Decca in 1962. And the second, An Odd Entrances, should resemble a stoned Syd Barrett having a jazz jam in a jacuzzi.” Read the full review here.
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- Live review: The Afghan Whigs
- Heart: the gospel according to Ann Wilson
The Afghan Whigs - Black Love (20th Anniversary Edition)
“Although less successful commercially than 1993’s breakthrough Gentlemen, the follow-up, Black Love, can easily be viewed as that album’s darker twin. The question mark over where Greg Dulli’s misanthropic persona ended and his own brand of masochistic machismo began was never more blurred. Achingly raw and visceral in its examination of break-ups, fuck-ups and regret, there’s just enough bitter redemption on offer to salve the wounds.” Read the full review here.
Theatre Of Hate - Westworld
“The too-cool-for-school metropolitan punk elite, who never felt any inclination to consult music press weathermen to tell them which way the wind blew, were left in a quandary when Adam Ant went pantopop. They needed a new champion. Diehard Ant loyalists transferred fealty to Bow Wow Wow, the sex gang Sioux went Bauhaus, but the alpha males – the psychobilly-literate, handy-fisted tattoo pioneers – embraced Theatre Of Hate.” Read the full review here.
Heart - Live At The Royal Albert Hall
“Filmed playing to an emphatic and packed Royal Albert Hall this summer, Heart are all about the sisters Wilson – the rest of the chaps in the line-up appear more as hired hands than as band member equals. Is anyone complaining though? Not in this enthusiastic audience, whose rousing reception is immediately rewarded with an assuredly devastating Magic Man.” Read the full review here.