Saturday 13 February 1999
John Mellencamp "John Mellencamp" (Columbia) John(ny) Cougar Mellencamp (to amalgamate his many recording names) is another one who has been round the block and back again. Though he will never attain Tom Petty's stature on those trips, this is a fresh album that captures the excitement of his live act with well- crafted American songs. HHH
"The Prodigy Present The Dirtchamber Sessions Vol 1" (XL Recordings) A mix album by Liam Howlett which comes at a good period for mix albums (David Holmes, Cut Chemist etc). Unsurprisingly it draws on hip-hop and punk, with lots of good scratching, but ultimately the choice of tracks is a little safe and not mind-blowing. HH
Stiff Little Fingers "And the Best of All... Hope Street" (EMI) This studio album shows that, unlike Blondie, Jake Burns (the only original SLF member these days) never really went away. It's likeable but generally unthrilling. Disc two has the hits - some of them great, others a reminder that Rudi were the best Belfast band of the punk era. HH
Various Artists "Outcaste New Breed UK" (Outcaste) Something fresh this week comes in this indie label's presentation of three new artists: Mo Magic, Ges-E & Usman and Niraj Chag. For the most part, it's a contemporary Asian take on chilled drum'n'bass, with some great ambient vocals. A nice sampler for good things to come. HHH
SINGLE OF THE WEEK
Shawn Mullins "Lullaby" (SMG-Columbia) Once every few years a big, old all-American classic comes out by an unknown (eg Marc Cohn's "Walking in Memphis") and this Lou Reed-meets-Beck-meets-Bruce Hornsby satire on the LA music scene is just one of those. HHHHH
Watch the new House of Cards series three trailerTV
Oscars 2015It was the first time Barney has compered the Academy Awards
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Razzies 2015 Golden Raspberry Awards 'honours' Cameron Diaz and Kirk Cameron
Arts & Ents blogs
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- 2 Ed Miliband deemed less influential than One Direction's Louis Tomlinson by official Doncaster power list
- 3 Japanese island overrun with cats after population explodes
- 4 Delhi bus rapist blames dead victim for attack because 'girls are responsible for rape'
- 5 Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
Kurt Cobain's life and death: Montage of Heck film uses unseen footage to tell Nirvana frontman's story
Game of Thrones season 5 spoilers: What we can expect according to George RR Martin's books
Fifty Shades of Grey movie shows first sex scene 'after 40 minutes'
Drugs Live: Twitter responds to Jon Snow and Jennie Bond smoking cannabis
Jimmy McGovern's new TV series 'Banished': Why Australia's past has such resonance today
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin and says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'