Ordinary Boys: Ordinary Boys

If ever there was a band that don’t sound like they’re reforming out of desperation, it’s Ordinary Boys on this rather decent new album. We confess we couldn’t name any of their tunes from their previous incarnation, though Wikipedia informs us that their big hit Boys Will Be Boys featured in the fifth Harry Potter […]

A-ha: Cast In Steel

Famous for Morten Harket (“gorgeous” and “like a model” according to a former fan) and that video where a cartoon character comes to life, A-ha had a string of hits before saying they were retiring in 2009, after the release of their ninth studio album Foot of the Mountain. Now they’re back (but for two […]

Nicolas Godin: Contrepoint

Godin is half of Air (insert molecule joke here) and he’s based this new album on Glenn Gould, who was obsessed with Johann Sebastian Bach. Gould’s award-winning CDs include a version of The Goldberg Variations that is possibly one of the best albums ever made, in any genre. Gould is noted for his rejection of […]

August Klughardt: Symphony No 4

We’ve been enjoying this CD (performed by the Anhaltische Philharmonie Dessau, with Antony Hermus). It’s got all the elements you expect from grandiose classical music but a lightness of touch and joi de vivre that make it easier to digest than some of the “great” works by the “masters”. German-born Klughardt was no slouch: he […]

Five Finger Death Punch: Got Your Six

Five Finger Death Punch (aka 5FDP) are a highly generic metal band from Las Vegas. They’ve sold several million albums in the States and presumably fill big venues, which must be annoying if you’re a serious metal band writing original music, and putting some thought into your work. 5FDP are not original, not new, not […]

Disturbed: Immortalized

Disturbed are possibly the biggest band you’ve never heard of: the interweb reports that they released four studio albums in 10 years, and all went in at one on the Billboard chart, with Metallica and Dave Matthews Band the only other “rock” acts to have done the same. But unless you’re into metal, they may […]

Foals: What Went Down

Foals can do no wrong, as far as we are concerned. From the math rock opening of The French Open on debut Antidotes to the closing notes on this new one (A Knife In The Ocean since you ask) they’ve not written a duff song. They’ve not even played a duff note or had a […]

Roman Statkowski: Piano Music

We played this through a couple of times before looking what it was and it came over as an entertaining and lively collection of piano music. It’s got a real sense of energy about it; there’s nothing serious about this and no dark tones, and we half-thought it was a compilation of favourite piano tracks […]

Siobhan Wilson: Say It’s True

Clannad are a mystery to us. One big hit and then a successful career based on churning out tedious Celtic tunery with lots of added atmosphere to make it seem more than dull as ditchwater. But someone must like them — and the world would be a dull place (even duller than Clannad) if we […]

Mike Garry / Joe Duddell St Anthony: an ode to Anthony H Wilson

Historian Christopher Hibbert once wrote about Francis Hare, sarcastically nicknamed “Silent”, who could not only speak every European language, but had a memory that was as surprising as his loquacity; he could repeat whole pages from almost any book that friends could mention. His chums, having had enough of this, made a bet that they […]