Pop

Paul Simon says farewell with a daring and inventive show

21 July 2018 9:00 am

Early in 1987, a middle-aged woman approached me on the record counter of the Slough branch of Boots. ‘What do…

Taylor Swift, and her adoring fans, at Wembley Stadium

An extraordinary, brilliant spectacle: Taylor Swift at Wembley Stadium reviewed

30 June 2018 9:00 am

Imagine living Taylor Swift’s life. She has been staggeringly, life-dominatingly famous since she was 17. Not for a single moment…

The reluctant frontman: Ray Davies

‘I think The Kinks could have found a better frontman’: Ray Davies interviewed

23 June 2018 9:00 am

At 74, Ray Davies is as sharp as ever. Michael Hann talks to him about America, angry groupies and being a reluctant frontman

The best album of the year so far, by some margin

23 June 2018 9:00 am

Grade: A+ While the young bands plunder the 1980s for every last gobbet of tinny synth and hi-hat, the singer-songwriters…

Musically, politically and culturally, Kanye West is a true original

9 June 2018 9:00 am

Musically, politically and culturally, Kanye West is a true original. Armond White explores the work of the hip-hop maverick

More immediate and even more vacuous than before: Chvrches’ Love Is Dead reviewed

2 June 2018 9:00 am

Grade: B Another load of SJW moppets keening over 1980s synths. ‘It only takes two seconds to say: I don’t…

Belly, the band responsible for one of my favourite 90s songs, is back

12 May 2018 9:00 am

Grade: B+ One of my favourite songs from the 1990s was about a Chinese adulteress forced to walk around town…

Kylie’s latest album is truly appalling: Golden reviewed

28 April 2018 9:00 am

Grade: D– Kylie has a place in my heart for having made the second-best single to feature the chorus ‘na…

Franz Ferdinand take disco and make it rather glorious: Always Ascending reviewed

24 February 2018 9:00 am

Grade: A Yay, people with a modicum of wit. They come along so very rarely these days. A decade on…

Rod Liddle finds his inner SJW listening to Justin Timberlake

10 February 2018 9:00 am

Grade: B– Hey, here comes Justin, the ‘President of Pop’ and ‘one of the greatest all-around entertainers in the history…

R&B landfill: Craig David's The Time is Now reviewed

27 January 2018 9:00 am

Grade: D– You’re in a minicab, on the way home from some bash that was considerably less pleasing than you…

St Vincent’s Masseduction is my album of year (in that I don’t actually hate it yet)

16 December 2017 9:00 am

This has not been an appalling year for pop music — it was better than 1984, for example, and 1961.…

Here comes the son: Baxter Dury

Baxter Dury on London going to the dogs, his acclaimed new album and his dad

25 November 2017 9:00 am

Michael Hann talks to Baxter Dury about his acclaimed new album – and the challenges of being Ian Dury’s son

Who will be the first woman on the moon?

25 November 2017 9:00 am

Wally Funk is on a mission — to make real her dream that a woman will walk on the moon…

She is a severely limited songwriter – and singer: Taylor Swift's Reputation reviewed

18 November 2017 9:00 am

Grade: D+ I was suckered in by the brio of Taylor Swift’s first big single, ‘Love Story’, despite the clunking…

St Vincent may be this decade’s Prince

21 October 2017 9:00 am

Grade: A The old Tulsa sound was a rather agreeable low-key, shuffling, blues-inflected rockabilly — primarily J.J. Cale and Leon…

Forget Bowie – our times are ripe for Black Sabbath’s worldview

30 September 2017 9:00 am

To get a reminder of how strange the 1970s were, there’s no need to plough through lengthy social and political…

Modishly morose but full of fine moments: LCD Soundsystem's American Dream reviewed

23 September 2017 9:00 am

Grade: B+ Number one. Everywhere, just about. You have to say that the man has a certain sureness of touch.…

One of the most compelling pop singers right now is a gender-fluid observant Jew

22 July 2017 9:00 am

The most compelling pop singers in music right now — at least in the branch where pop singers still play…

Peter Perrett’s How The West Was Won is a beautiful work, lush with swirling melodies

24 June 2017 9:00 am

Much though I loved it at the time, not a great deal of lasting worth came out of that fervid…

Flower power: the members of Geranium Pond

The legacy of Sgt. Pepper that’s really worth celebrating is toytown pop – not prog rock

3 June 2017 9:00 am

Pop’s counterfactuals tend to be built on questioning mortality: what if Jimi Hendrix had lived? Or Buddy Holly? Rarely does…

Lou Reed takes a walk on the wild side in 1972

When real rock stars roamed the world

20 May 2017 9:00 am

David Hepworth is such a clever writer — not just clever in the things he writes, but in the way…

I’ve got Mick Jagger’s lost memoir

18 February 2017 9:00 am

I’ve got it. But you may never see it

The sound of very earnest millennials making music: The xx’s I See you reviewed

21 January 2017 9:00 am

The xx is a trio of Londoners whose eponymous first album, released in 2009, has defined the way pop music…

When blacking up carried the death penalty

14 January 2017 9:00 am

Black background A Morris dancing troupe with blacked-up faces had to abandon its performance in a Birmingham shopping centre after…