sun 25/02/2018

1980s

Reissue CDs Weekly: Television Personalities

How much of someone else’s despair is it possible to take? What are the limits on putting a sense of desolation or isolation into a song? Can such naked expression be mediated by a glossy production or crowded instrumental arrangements which...

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DVD/Blu-ray: Hounds of Love

Hounds of Love is the latest in a long line of small-budget Australian horrors “based on true events” – it must be something about the heat. However, stellar performances and a refreshing depth in characterisation make this thriller stand apart from...

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theartsdesk on Vinyl 35: Christmas 2017 Special with Pink Floyd, Mariah Carey, ELO, Madness and more

The music business is about to disappear on holiday wholesale and we won’t see hide nor hair of it until mid-January. There’s just time for one last 2017 vinyl celebration. Regular readers should be warned that theartsdesk on Vinyl becomes rather...

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Reissue CDs Weekly: Phil Seymour

“Precious to me” is a high-carat gold nugget. A guitar-pop song with cascading, lush Everly Brothers harmonies drawing on The Searchers’ version of “When You Walk in the Room”, its immediate tune instantly lodges itself in the head.Instead of being...

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Depeche Mode, Manchester Arena review - synth-pop gurus raise the spirits of thousands

For a band as big as Depeche Mode, in a venue as big the 21,000-capacity Manchester Arena, on a tour as big as their current Spirit tour, it almost doesn’t need saying that the pre-gig atmosphere is buzzing. A major presence on the British music...

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Peter Perrett, Concorde 2, Brighton review - magnificent songs scorchingly rendered

These days Peter Perrett doesn’t rely on the songs of his late Seventies/early Eighties band, The Only Ones, to hold his audience’s attention. At 65, looking and sounding healthier than he has done in years, he’s on a vital late-career creative roll...

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DVD/Blu-ray: Miracle Mile - cult apocalyptic romance

To quote the genius sax player Dexter Gordon, "In nuclear war, all men are cremated equal" – or in this case, all adorable couples will burn as one. Anthony Edwards plays Harry, a not-so-genius trombone player who one sunny afternoon in Los...

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Ensemble InterContemporain, Pintscher, RFH review - a visit from the gentle ghost of Boulez

The Royal Festival Hall rather belied its name for a visit to London on Saturday of France’s premier new-music ensemble. It can’t be helped that the more intimate space of the Queen Elizabeth Hall next door is presently closed for renovation, but...

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Snowfall, BBC Two review - blizzard hits South Central

An American TV show about drugs and drug dealers? How frightfully novel. At least The Deuce (showing now on Sky Atlantic) is about pornography instead.Anyhow Snowfall has been created by John Singleton, of Boyz n the Hood fame, and whisks us back to...

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The Glass Castle review - Woody steals the film by a wide margin

People who live in glass castles might be wary of throwing stones. That clearly was not the case with American magazine journalist Jeannette Walls, who made of her often harrowing childhood a best-selling memoir that has found its inevitable way to...

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The Reagan Show review - engaging but frustrating

The Reagan administration produced as much video content as the previous five administrations combined. That’s the claim early on in The Reagan Show, an engaging but ultimately frustrating documentary compiled entirely from archive footage by co-...

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CD: The Blow Monkeys - The Wild River

It was this album's good fortune to arrive on a miserable rainy afternoon. At other times my first impressions might be a bit harsher about its comfortable, retro dad-grooves and easily flowing sax solos, but instead I let it wrap me like a blanket...

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