Archive for March, 2012

Screen

The song enters its second verse

The song enters its second verse

For a time last year, the world was divided into those of us (the readers of George RR Martin’s glorious A Song of Ice and Fire novels) who knew full well that stiff-with-honour Ned Stark was doomed, and hugged that information to ourselves with a certain gleeful delight, and the newcomers [...]

by × March 28, 2012 × 0 comments

Music

Modern London’s musical Dickens

Modern London’s musical Dickens

I first discovered the dubstep musician Burial in a short review of his self-titled debut album in the now defunct Observer Music Monthly. It described an album of ‘evocative atmospherics’ and ‘bass-heavy menace’ — and it had me curious. I’d been listening to a lot of Grime (North London hip-hop) [...]

by × March 27, 2012 × 0 comments

Music

Music in the key of comedy

Music in the key of comedy

Sometimes I wonder if we classical music aficionados are masochists. We flock to the gloomiest song cycles by Schubert or Mahler expecting, indeed intending, to blub. We put ourselves through the atmospheric horrors of Soviet Russia by attending gigantic Shostakovich symphonies. And don’t get me started on Wagner. So it [...]

by × March 25, 2012 × 0 comments

Music

Morrissey hasn’t changed — we have

Morrissey hasn’t changed — we have

Because the 80s is the decade that actually ended the 20th Century – the 90s was just an after-party clean-up operation – it’s also the decade that never came to an end itself. In fact, the 80s just won’t go away. Economy in (‘Big Bang’) recession. Tories in power. Cuts [...]

by × March 14, 2012 × 0 comments

Words

Ways of reading

Ways of reading

Last week’s Archive on 4 on Radio 4 was a retrospective of the BBC2 series Ways of Seeing, presented by John Berger, which was first broadcast 40 years ago. I remember reading the book when I was at university, and listening to the programme now I was reminded of one of [...]

by × March 2, 2012 × 0 comments