sun 19/05/2024

Americana

Album: Ani DiFranco - Unprecedented Sh!t

Having moved out of her mother’s apartment aged 15 to become “an emancipated minor” and set up her own record label, Righteous Babe, just four years later, every step of Ani DiFranco’s life has been determinedly – some might say ferociously –...

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Album: Abigail Lapell - Anniversary

Anniversary is Canadian singer-songwriter Abigail Lapell’s sixth album (if we include last year’s lengthy EP of lullabies). Her success has not reached much beyond her native land, as is often the way with Canadian acts, but she’s a proven talent,...

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Album: Pokey LaFarge - Rhumba Country

Pokey LaFarge has always defied categorisation. He likened his 2020 album Rock Bottom Rhapsody to a mix tape, with elements of bluegrass, barrelhouse, doo-wop, jazz, rockabilly, country blues, the great American songbook and even hints of movie...

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The Comeuppance, Almeida Theatre review - remembering high-school high jinks

I’ve never been one for school reunions, but even if I had kept in touch with former classmates I think that American playwright Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’s The Comeuppance might, just might, lead me to reflect on the wisdom of revisiting the...

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theartsdesk on Vinyl 83: Deep Purple, Annie Anxiety, Ghetts, WHAM!, Kaiser Chiefs, Butthole Surfers and more

VINYL OF THE MONTHLondon Afrobeat Collective Esengo (Canopy)The weather has not been kind to the UK lately, pelting it daily with endless drizzle and gloom. So wrap your ears around this, a mini-album that will infuse any room with blazing sunshine...

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Album: Maggie Rogers - Don't Forget Me

For the past almost two years, Maggie Rogers has taken an unexpectedly special place in my heart and musical tastes. Upon reviewing her previous album, Surrender, because of the difference in style and sound to my usual tastes I was caught...

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Album: Aaron West and the Roaring Twenties - In Lieu of Flowers

Perfecting Ernest Hemingway’s advice that “a writer should create living people; people not characters”, In Lieu of Flowers sees Aaron West and the Roaring Twenties’ Dan Campbell invite fans back into the fictional universe of open-wound Aaron in a...

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Album: The Dead South - Chains & Stakes

There are few ways of describing the music of The Dead South – progressive bluegrass is my favourite because it's so meaningless to so many. By which I mean it doesn't matter what the genre, it's just good music, and that's all you need to know.I...

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Album: Katherine Priddy - The Pendulum Swing

Having carried herself to the front rank of young British singer-songwriters with her debut album, 2021’s The Eternal Rocks Beneath, Birmingham-born Katherine Priddy carries her muse from the eternal and mythological poetry of that album for a more...

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Album: Sarah Jarosz - Polaroid Lovers

Critically acclaimed in the US, singer-songwriter Sarah Jarosz has won four Grammies during the course of her career. Born in Texas, spending most of her adult life in New York, her seventh album was created in her new hometown of Nashville, with an...

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Music Reissues Weekly: The Long Ryders - Native Sons

Native Sons joyfully reframed musical styles of the past for the present. Even so, the freshness and oomph of The Long Ryders’ debut album meant revivalism was sidestepped. Originally issued in October 1984, it was a landmark in helping to nurture...

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Album: Lizzie No - Halfsies

With this her third album, Bronx-born-singer-songwriter Lizzie No promises “an apocalyptic journey from exile to liberation” – a bold promise. Halfsies is certainly an album of musical contrasts: on the one hand the freneticism of “Getaway Car...

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