sat 10/12/2016

New releases on CD & DVD

CD: Gareth Malone - A Great British Christmas

Matthew Wright

TV’s Gareth Malone has been pounding the pavement from the Perranarworthal Handbell Ringers in Cornwall to the Brighouse and Rastrick Brass Band in West Yorkshire to curate a national expression of Christmas. Each group gets Malone’s motivational treatment, and the result is a shiny bauble of an album, ideal for engaging a broad family taste.  

Blu-ray: To Live and Die in LA

Saskia Baron

William Friedkin’s super-stylish bad cop/bad villain thriller was his return to form after the disasters of Crusing and Sorcerer. To Live and Die in LA didn’t achieve the instant classic status of The French Connection when it was released in 1985, but it's enjoyed a cult following ever since, and this new edition in a restored print is a treat.

CD: Pentatonix - A Pentatonix Christmas

Katie Colombus

If Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas” makes you want to burn the nearest decorated pine tree and Michael Buble’s Christmas croons give you the...

DVD/Blu-ray: Theo & Hugo

Tom Birchenough

Olivier Ducastel and Jacques Martineau have described the budget on which they made their latest film Theo & Hugo – the French directors have...

CD: Bob Dylan - The Real Royal Albert Hall Concert

Tim Cumming

Hailing a lift in torrential rain one night from an early 2000s Dylan concert at Docklands Arena – that long-gone ghost of a room – I fell into...

CD: Public Service Broadcasting – Live At Brixton

Guy Oddy

South London neo-psychedelicists beef up their sound for a celebratory homecoming gig

CD: Jean-Michel Jarre - Oxygene 3

Thomas H Green

40 years on, the French synth maestro's greatest hit blooms into a trilogy

CD: Neil Young - Peace Trail

Liz Thomson

Righteous anger but insufficient effort

DVD: Tickled

Nick Hasted

The laughter doesn't last in a gripping documentary about fetishes and power

DVD: The Music of Strangers

Tom Birchenough

Picaresque musical journey led by cellist Yo-Yo Ma is thoughtfully inspiring

CD: Sex Swing - Sex Swing

Guy Oddy

Underground noisemongers’ debut is inspired but defiantly uncommercial

CD: The Rolling Stones - Blue & Lonesome

Tim Cumming

Rolling back the years to the deep Chicago Blues

CD: Hollie + Metropole Orkest - Poetry versus Orchestra

Matthew Wright

Subtle, imaginative collaboration underlines potent performance talent

DVD/Blu-ray: Odds Against Tomorrow

Graham Fuller

How Harry Belafonte and Robert Ryan teamed for a timely anti-racist film noir

CD: Vile Electrodes - In the Shadows of Monuments

Thomas H Green

Second album from gifted south coast synth-pop duo is ravishingly produced but moody

CD: Robert Earl Keen - Live Dinner Reunion

Tim Cumming

Generous servings of Texan honky-tonk classics

CD: Xam Duo - Xam Duo

Barney Harsent

A wonderful, improvisational debut from the Hookworms and Deadwall alumni

DVD: The Lovers & the Despot

Graham Rickson

An everyday story of abduction, imprisonment and film production

CD: Kuro - Kuro

Guy Oddy

Anglo-French duo’s debut is a cosmic trip

DVD/Blu-ray: Napoléon

David Nice

Abel Gance's sprawling fragment of a mighty life is flawed but breathtaking

CD: Metallica - Hardwired… To Self-Destruct

Barney Harsent

Metal's masters return with a powerful, but patchy, double

CD: Rumer - This Girl's in Love

Liz Thomson

Revived 45s: Rumer revisits the Bacharach - David jukebox

CD: Solange - A Seat at the Table

Joe Muggs

The younger Knowles delivers the album she's always promised

CD: Little Mix - Glory Days

Thomas H Green

Catchier and sassier than those who dislike them without hearing them might think

DVD: Ma Ma

Nick Hasted

Penélope Cruz controls a cancer melodrama

CD: Rachael Yamagata - Tightrope Walker

Lisa-Marie Ferla

Husky-voiced songwriter embraces her experimental side

CD: Martha Wainwright - Goodnight City

Liz Thomson

After a four-year absence, the Canadian singer-songwriter returns with a solo outing

CD: Sting - 57th and 9th

Russ Coffey

Rock veteran swaps lotus position for a trip down memory lane

DVD/Blu-Ray: The Small World of Sammy Lee

Saskia Baron

Lost gem of London film noir restored in all its sleazy glory

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