Choice Cuts: Massive Attack – Blue Lines

Wild Bunch / Virgin Records, 1991
Lone figure in underpass, Apr 22, 2013, by Tramsformer18 (1000x563)My abiding memory of Massive Attack’s Blue Lines is a strange one in that it began with reading a confessional article by a girl I have never met. The girl*, then a student at my former Nottingham university, had had a fling with her best mate’s boyfriend, and she was writing about how Blue Lines got her through the inevitable fallout that occurred when her affair was discovered. Continue reading

Choice Cuts: Gorillaz – Demon Days

Parlophone Records, 2005Gorillaz - Demon Days artwork, wallpaper edit (1024x576)A gimmick. That’s what they put Gorillaz’ success down to. Despite everything that had been achieved by this unusual musical concoction in the 18 months since the launch of their 2001 debut album, detractors still labelled them a here today, gone tomorrow band. But little did they know that the virtual band, created by musician, Damon Albarn, and cartoonist, Jamie Hewlett, would front what would later be acknowledged as one of the most influential and progressive records of the noughties: Demon Days. Continue reading

Best albums of 2014: top 10

(Clockwise from top left) Damon Albarn, Kelis, St Vincent, Little DragonHere it is. The final countdown. We’ve had club bangers, blazing rap debuts, plenty of pop and atmospheric opuses. But the best is yet to come from albums that challenge the social order, boggle your mind and take you to new plains.

10. Jungle – Jungle
9. MØ – No Mythologies to Follow
8. Essa – The Misadventures of a Middle Man
7. Little Dragon – Nabuma Rubberband
6. Broken Bells – After the Disco
5. Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings – Give the People What They Want
4. Neneh Cherry – Blank Project
3. Damon Albarn – Everyday Robots
2. Kelis – Food
1. St Vincent – St Vincent Continue reading

Neneh Cherry review – a lively introduction to her new sound

Neneh Cherry, Rough Trade East, 25/02/2014, by Aaron Lee (1920x1080)“Big hand to the Walthamstow massive!” said Neneh Cherry, full of energy on stage at Rough Trade East, London, despite the late hour. “This song [‘Weightless’] would not have happened without RocketNumberNine [the two-piece from the aforementioned London borough].” Continue reading