mon 22/09/2014

New releases on CD & DVD

CD: U2 - Songs of Innocence

Adam Sweeting

Though advertised as a heartfelt and autobiographical work, U2's 13th studio album tells you far more about the state of the music industry than it does about the intimate inner stories of the musicians. Tying the album release to the launch of Apple's iPhone 6 merely reinforced the view that U2 is no longer a band, more an offshore corporation, and was bound to strike many people as a desperate ploy from an outfit struggling to stay meaningful. Humiliatingly, many iTunes users have been so...

CD: Leonard Cohen - Popular Problems

Mark Kidel

Leonard Cohen has always been, first and foremost, a poet. His thoroughly grounded mix of Vedanta, Zen and Jewish mysticism places him in a class apart. He is both rabbinical high priest and consummate entertainer. As he’s never traded on borrowed African-American sex-and-swagger or matinée idol charisma, age hasn’t made him in any way ridiculous. He carries his gravitas lightly, not least because his deft way with words keeps us delicately poised between revelation and unknowing.From the...

CD: Aphex Twin - Syro

Thomas H Green

Even if this album were dull, which it is far from, Aphex Twin Richard D James’ return would be welcome. Although he’s only a pop star in the loosest...

DVD: Only Lovers Left Alive

Karen Krizanovich

Do not miss this film. I don’t say it lightly. Even on the small screen, filmmaker Jim Jarmusch's Cannes Palme d'Or nominee is a warm love story, no...

DVD: Otway the Movie – Rock and Roll's...

Kieron Tyler

For someone who tags himself rock and roll's greatest failure, John Otway hasn’t done too badly. Anyone attempting to navigate their way through a...

CD: Goat – Commune

Guy Oddy

Swedish psychedelicists move the hips and spin the mind

DVD: The Two Faces of January

Karen Krizanovich

A superb, elegant thriller that's excellent on the small screen

CD: The Juan MacLean – In a Dream

Kieron Tyler

Intermittent thrills on third album from LCD Soundsystem-related electro-dance outfit

CD: Counting Crows - Somewhere Under Wonderland

Katherine McLaughlin

Rich and nourishing seventh album from American alt rockers

CD: Barbra Streisand - Partners

Thomas H Green

La Streisand takes bloodless music to new heights

DVD: A Thousand Times Good Night

Tom Birchenough

Juliette Binoche oustanding as a war photographer divided between home and away

CD: Vessel - Punish, Honey

Joe Muggs

Bristol techno producer turns in a gothic-folk-industrial nightmare

CD: Catfish and the Bottlemen - The Balcony

Lisa-Marie Ferla

A short, sweet debut from oddly-named Welsh four-piece

CD: Tricky - Adrian Thaws

Mark Kidel

Dark sounds from Bristol maverick keep hitting the spot

CD: Vance Joy – Dream Your Life Away

Guy Oddy

Pop-folk debut from Australian singer-songwriter

CD: Ryan Adams - Ryan Adams

Lisa-Marie Ferla

Sad songs and rockers as alt.country's poster boy returns

CD: Robert Plant - lullaby and... The Ceaseless Roar

Joe Muggs

"Percy" is in mystical form, but can he do it with dignity?

Sgt. Bilko - The Phil Silvers Show: The Complete Collection

Nick Hasted

Every minute of the ageless sitcom king

CD: Karen O - Crush Songs

Katherine McLaughlin

Karen O displays an undeniably raw show of emotion on her debut solo album

DVD: Blue Ruin

Karen Krizanovich

An award-winning American indy that genuinely thrills

CD: Partisans - Swamp

Matthew Wright

Veteran fusioneers blend their sounds with a delicacy that's more celestial than swampy

CD: The Pierces - Creation

Lisa-Marie Ferla

Fifth album finds Alabama sisters getting metaphysical

DVD: When I Saw You

Katie Colombus

This heartfelt Palestinian drama is a poetic look at one kid’s journey of displacement

CD: Dr John - Ske-Dat-De-Dat: The Spirit of Satch

Guy Oddy

New Orleans’ titan sits on his laurels in the company of Louis Armstrong

CD: Simian Mobile Disco - Whorl

Thomas H Green

Electronic duo take us on a spaced out - but dynamic - analogue adventure

DVD: Frau im Mond

Graham Rickson

Fritz Lang's lunar epic shines in a gleaming new print

CD: Andy Milne & Dapp Theory - Forward In All Directions

Matthew Wright

Engrossingly multi-faceted experimental pieces reveal an unexpected degree of lyrical charm

Reissue CDs Weekly: Popcorn Girls

Kieron Tyler

Saint Etienne’s Bob Stanley opens a window on Belgium’s open-minded dance scene

CD: J Mascis - Tied to a Star

Lisa-Marie Ferla

Dinosaur Jr. man gets introspective on solo outing

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CD: U2 - Songs of Innocence

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CD: Leonard Cohen - Popular Problems

As he nears 80, Leonard Cohen continues to shine, miraculously