Live Music + Gig Reviews

Saint Etienne @ Forum, London

by Helen Wright

If the crowd at the Forum and recent press reports are anything to go by, a lot of people out there think Saint Etienne are pretty good. This may or may not have something to…



Brassy @ Garage, London

by Michael Hubbard

Who were those strange people in the very tall hats and very short… shorts? When The Garage’s doors finally opened and when nearly everyone had had the time for at least three drinks, the support...

Brassy – Got It Made

by Michael Hubbard

Finally! The word “anticipated” is an understatement when applied to this, the debut album from Brassy. How long have we waited?? Anyway, finally it is here and, quelle surprise, it rocks. The CD has been...

Mojave 3 – Excuses For Travellers

by Michael Hubbard

From the opening track onwards, Excuses For Travellers, Mojave 3‘s third album, worked its way into my soul, almost seeped it’s way in there. By the end of my first (of many, continuing) hearings of...

Black Box Recorder @ Union Chapel, London

by Michael Hubbard

Black Box Recorder must like the Union Chapel. This is the second time in less than a year they’ve played here, having supported Smog in August 1999. This time, they are supported by a five-piece...

Mojave 3 @ Dingwalls, London

by Michael Hubbard

Quiet, reflective acoustic music came to Camden, with Neil Halstead and his Mojave 3 bandmates wending their way through a set list of old and new tracks, in preparation for the release of their third...

Paleday @ Water Rats, London

by Chris Linosi

Surprises DO happen. Walking towards the Water Rats in Kings Cross last Tuesday, it suddenly struck me how truly awful the pop music scene has been this year. There has been no real talent emerging,...

Goran Bregovic @ Barbican, London

by Sabina Nenkova

“Goran Bregovic is playing the Barbican,” I was told. I was not quite sure if that would be the same Goran I’d heard of years before who played gipsy-style music with a Weddings and Funerals...

Ute Lemper @ Royal Festival Hall, London

by Chris Linosi

One must surely wonder whether Ute Lemper feels angry towards Germany, considering the amount of times she criticised her native country. I’m sure, however, that any German audience members will have immediately forgiven her when...

Black Box Recorder – The Facts Of Life

by Michael Hubbard

As an experiment in corrupting teenagers, Black Box Recorder‘s second album, The Facts Of Life, works remarkably well. It features songs with sounds and arrangements which, with just a little more effort, could pass for...

Ute Lemper – Punishing Kiss

by Fiona Thorne

Nick Cave‘s opener Little Water Song is a hauntingly beautiful piece – the last thoughts of a girl as she is drowned by her lover – Joby Talbot‘s wonderful string arrangements serenely evoke her watery...

David Gray – White Ladder

by Michael Hubbard

The success of David Gray‘s White Ladder has at least in part been due to word of mouth. So many people have bought it and told all their friends to do likewise; it is consequently...

Max Tundra – Some Best Friend You Turned Out To Be

by Michael Hubbard

Max Tundra, a minutely-framed chap also known as Ben Jacobs, has released his second album of experimental electronica. No longer with Warp Records, he now moves to Domino, from where he unleashes more of his...

Black Box Recorder @ Underworld, London

by Michael Hubbard

I can’t think of anyone else who has managed to get three record deals (with Hut, Chrysalis and Nude), always two concurrently, for the same band. Quite what Luke Haines thinks he’s up to remains...

South – From Here On In

by Michael Hubbard

Baggy, BritPop, BritRock, Grunge, Electronica – dead, aren’t they? Think again. South‘s debut album, From Here On In, restores one’s faith in the waning star that is British rock music. It does this simply because...

Cane 141 – Garden Tiger Moth

by Michael Hubbard

This first release from Decor Records (we assume, as we have no press release to say otherwise) is from some Galway chaps collectively known as Cane 141. Comparisons with Kraftwerk or Ladytron would be more...

Hefner – We Love The City

by Michael Hubbard

They don’t, you know. They positively hate the city, the city in question being London. But this is a fun album, from start to finish, even if one of the songs is called The Day...

William Orbit – Pieces In A Modern Style

by Michael Hubbard

William Orbit might be well known as a megastar producer, the man who gave us Blur‘s 13 and Madonna‘s Ray Of Light. But this solo album sounds like neither of these. Essentially, all on his...

Linus @ 12 Bar, London

by Michael Hubbard

Out of five bands in the 12 Bar on this freezing December evening, Linus were the most mentionable, but not always for the best reasons. Whisperin’ Bob put up a patchy but at times excellent...

Ani DiFranco @ Forum, London

by Michael Hubbard

This was to be my third audience with Ani DiFranco, but I’d not seen her for two years, during which time she’d released another basket-load of albums. This gig could well be the same as...

Sparks @ Shepherd’s Bush Empire, London

by Michael Hubbard

“They’re a bit like Kraftwerk,” someone told me prior to this gig. This was just before the idiosyncratic American brothers Mael and their percussive accomplice appeared on stage in the Shepherd’s Bush Empire for this,...