Nicolas Jaar: My job is to make music that hasn't been heard

Apr 4, 2013

Nicolas Jaar: My job is to make music that hasn't been heard

Nicolas Jaar, the precociously talented American-Chilean underground electronic artist, makes music that defies conventional description. Of course, that is exactly what the 23-year-old Ivy League graduate aspires to. “For me, it would be boring if you could say to me ‘you make this type ...

Alabama Shakes tap the roots of Southern blues-rock

Jan 23, 2013

Alabama Shakes tap the roots of Southern blues-rock

Here’s a question: what do Russell Crowe, Robert Plant, Jack White and David Byrne all have in common? Incredible talent, fame and money is the obvious response, but the answer is that all four count themselves as part of the growing legion of Alabama ...

Patti Smith hopes 2013 is about rebuilding

Jan 17, 2013

Patti Smith hopes 2013 is about rebuilding

By the time you read this, Patti Smith will have been in Japan for nearly a week. The iconic poet, author, painter and “Godmother of Punk” hasn’t yet played a gig with her band; that will come later. First, Smith is reconnecting with a ...

Hot Chip 'embrace fun' on new album

Jun 21, 2012

Hot Chip 'embrace fun' on new album

“I like Zapp, not Zappa” goes “Night and Day,” the lead single from London electro-pop quintet Hot Chip, and in one small yet significant statement the five-piece’s attitude to music is shouted loud and proud. As manifestos go, it is brilliantly apt in proclaiming ...

Maccabees rise above indie's fall

May 17, 2012

Maccabees rise above indie's fall

So indie-guitar music in Britain is in the doldrums, is it? Try telling that to The Maccabees. In a world of Lady Gaga, Nicki Minaj and Rihanna, the London five-piece are bucking the trend for young white British boys armed with a six-string. Not ...

Zulu Winter brings brains to their beats

Feb 16, 2012

Zulu Winter brings brains to their beats

“That sounds very English, doesn’t it?” says Zulu Winter frontman Will Daunt of his refusal to get carried away by the fact his band has spent the start of 2012 as many critic’s tip for the top. “I don’t want to sound like a ...

Calvi sings out in a big way

Feb 16, 2012

Calvi sings out in a big way

Endorsed by Brian Eno, asked on tour by Nick Cave and doused with critical acclaim, Anna Calvi is the little woman with the big voice winning admirers at her every turn. London born Calvi’s eponymous debut, a beguiling mix taking cues from goth-pop, classical ...

Friendly Fires to indulge pop pleasures on tour

Nov 25, 2011

Friendly Fires to indulge pop pleasures on tour

Friendly Fires are happy to finally be back on home turf. It’s no wonder, the year has been predominantly spent living out the tale of their song “Hawaiian Air,” the highlight of second album “Pala” that typifies the trio’s dance-pop vision while bemoaning the ...

Chad Valley's summer project

Nov 25, 2011

Chad Valley's summer project

Extra incentive, as if any was needed, to get down to the Friendly Fires shows in Osaka and Tokyo comes in the form of opening act Chad Valley, the moniker of British solo artist Hugo Manuel. Over the last 12 months, Oxford-born Manuel has ...