This week Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories turns an incredible five years old. I grappled awkwardly with the record at the time – penning the below review for Time Out – and was both on and off the money. Yes, … Continue reading Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories, five years on – a future-disco car crash which never stopped flaming
I can distinctly remember the first time I heard the playing of Anouar Brahem, because the circumstances were so cinematically odd. As a wanderlust-struck student, sitting outside a cheap café in Tangier, Morocco – a day after completing a three-week … Continue reading How Jan Garbarek, Anouar Brahem and a Moroccan (mis-)adventure kick started my lifelong love affair with ECM records
The oft-quoted dictum that “writing about music is like dancing about architecture” – credited variously to sources from Laurie Anderson to Frank Zappa, but attributed by scholars to comedian Martin Mull – is, of course, clap-trap. Words carry meaning more … Continue reading Why writing about jazz is maybe just a little bit like ‘dancing about architecture’ – @robgarratt on jazz
The past few months have seen alternative Arabic music enjoy an unprecedented mainstream embrace – nowhere more so than in the UAE, with the first third of 2018 welcoming second editions of scene-stealing indie festivals Wasla and Step Music, and … Continue reading How the Middle East’s underground went overground: Selected writings on alternative Arabic music 2014-18
Quincy Jones is a man with an opinion on everything – and a story about everyone who is anyone. Recently clebrating his 85th birthday on March 14 (the date this was originally published on new sister blog HK Beats & Eats), … Continue reading Q’s Quotes: The best of Quincy Jones 2011-2016
It’s the biggest event in pop this year, and probably next year, too: the release of Adele’s third album, 25. Its predecessor, 2011’s 21, sold a whopping 30 million records worldwide, and was crowned the UK’s best-selling LP of the … Continue reading First listen review: Adele’s 25 track-by-track
Somebody That I Used to Know has sold more than ten million copies worldwide, topping the charts in 23 countries; it’s one of the most successful pop songs of recent years. But why? Rob Garratt dissects the track to take … Continue reading Anatomy of a hit: Just why is Gotye’s Somebody I Used to Know every-f-ing-where right now?