sun 01/05/2016

Joe Muggs

joe.muggs

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Joe writes regularly for FACT, The Wire and Mixmag, specialising in electronic music and the anything-but-grey areas where genres and media dissolve into one another.

Articles by Joe Muggs

Prince, 1958-2016

Prince Rogers Nelson was the most gloriously disruptive presence in popular culture from the very start to the very end. Everything about him was off kilter and wrong: it's not for nothing that the...

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Kathryn Williams, Sydenham St Bartholemew's Church

Kathryn Williams has a lot to live up to. The last time I saw the Liverpudlian singer-songwriter play live was a completely unamplified gig in the Tricycle Theatre some nine years ago, and its...

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CD: M83 - Junk

There's an area in American music that is oddly under-reported given its scale. Somewhere between the garish mania of mainstream dance music, “EDM”, and the cool cachet of more underground sounds is...

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CD: Pet Shop Boys - Super

The deadpan duo of Tennant and Lowe have never been easy to suss out at the best of times: maybe their way of layering wackiness on deep seriousness, eyebrow-flickering subtlety on roaring camp,...

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CD: Orlando Voorn - In My World

Once upon a time, techno was the future, and Orlando Voorn was right at the heart of building that future. The Dutchman was in early on the late-1980s wave of Detroit electronic production – in which...

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CD: Tonight Will Be Fine - Elephant Island

DJs and techno producers doing “real music” doesn't always inspire the greatest of confidence: they often seem in thrall to other musicians, blind to what makes their own music special, or afraid to...

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CD: El Guincho - Hiperasia

The career of the Gran Canaria-born musician Pablo Díaz-Reixa seems to work in an accelerated time-frame, speeding through decades and eras as he develops his sound. Though he has always worked with...

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CD: Rihanna - Anti

It's hard to imagine what the weight of public anticipation must feel like for 27-year-old Rihanna and her team. A pop star for ten years, and one of the planet's biggest since the all-conquering...

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Tony Allen and Jimi Tenor, Café OTO

Questions of what is authentic and what is retro get more complicated the more the information economy matures. Music from decades past that only tens or hundreds of people heard at the time it was...

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David Bowie, 1947-2016

He knew.18 months of dealing with cancer, and rather than withdraw and rest – as he'd done before – David Bowie knuckled down made a record as intense and disturbing as anything he's done before. The...

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CD: Ryuichi Sakamoto & Alva Noto - The Revenant Original Soundtrack

Ryuichi Sakamoto must be the most low-key megastar around. He came to prominence with the witty electro of Yellow Magic Orchestra in the late 1970s, then with some era-defining soundtracks like Merry...

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Albums of 2015: Julia Holter - Have You in My Wilderness

For some musicians operating on the leftfield, achieving accessibility or commercial success means compromising their unique vision. Not so with Los Angeles singer-songwriter-producer Julia Holter....

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CD: KRTS - Close Eyes to Exit

This has been a truly glorious year for electronica albums. Records by the likes of Arca, Kode9, Jlin, James Place and Rabit showed digital music could still feel like it was writing the future,...

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CD: Coldplay – A Head Full of Dreams

It must be tough being Coldplay (bank balances aside). To hit a formula so successful that you essentially make all of pop music sound like you is quite a weight to carry. It wasn't just the obvious...

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CD: Pope Francis - Wake Up!

“May you live in interesting times,” goes the old curse – and for better or worse there's no question that we do. Among the many, many couldn't-make-it-up elements in play in the global landscape in...

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RIP musician and producer Allen Toussaint

Allen Toussaint, who died last night aged 77, apparently just minutes after coming off stage in Madrid, was the soul of New Orleans. Irma Thomas, The Neville Brothers, Dr Longhair, The Meters, and of...

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latest in today

Q&A Special: Sir Mark Elder on Dvořák

The Hallé's music director introduces a sumptuous festival of the Czec...

Piau, Les Talens Lyriques, Rousset, Wigmore Hall

An unexpectedly lacklustre evening from Rousset and his musicians

Reissue CDs Weekly: The Move, The Yardbirds

Yet more outings for essential but oft-reissued albums by two seminal Briti...

CD: Gregory Porter - Take Me to the Alley

Crossover jazz star returns to his roots

CD: Beyoncé - Lemonade

Beyoncé's personal and political project is dark, visual and deeply sp...

Daniel Kramer for ENO Artistic Director: cause for cautious...

Can the new incumbent hold out against the company's impoverishment?

Alberto Giacometti, Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, Norwic...

A one-of-a-kind artist gains context and depth surrounded by his contempora...

Classical CDs Weekly: Ibert, Martinů, Ravel

Czech piano trios and fireworks from 20th century France

Win a Luxury Weekend for Two at the 50th Brighton Festival!

Prize includes hotel, a meal and event tickets

Son of Saul

Dead man walking: Hungarian exploration of the closed universe of Auschwitz...