Elisa Bray: Caught in the Net

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The Independent Culture

The latest in living-room gigs comes from Daryl Hall of Seventies/Eighties rock and soul duo Hall and Oates fame. Long before bands started dropping their labels or eschewing labels altogether with the help of MySpace and other internet platforms, back in 1992 the duo left major label Arista and set up their own U-Watch Records to release their music.

Now, Hall is getting his music celeb friends around to his London pad to play a set from the intimacy of his own living room for a live webcast – as an internet version of Later... with Jools Holland.

The first guest star is KT Tunstall (right, with Hall), of whom Hall is a big fan. Live from Daryl's House will be a monthly webcast and will be available to watch from his website www.livefrom darylshouse.com on 15 March. It's 8pm on a Saturday night, so if you're out you'll be able to watch it anytime from then onwards.

Hall has been doing the gigs from his New York pad for a while and its success led him to launch the webcast from the UK – from, apparently, his five-storey Georgian manor. US guests have included Gym Class Heroes' Travis McCoy, as well as partner John Oates and future guests will include New Zealand's comedy band Flight of the Conchords, and Matchbox Twenty's Rob Thomas.

As we build up to the release date for Elbow's album The Seldom Seen Kid, the Manchester band have set up a website to promote it www.theseldomseenkid .com. On it you'll find a cube and the idea is to click on the squares to unlock the instrumental layers of new album track "Audience With the Pope"; as you uncover the squares you'll build layer upon layer of the song, starting with strings and backing vocals, then guitar and Guy Garvey's vocals etc. until you can enjoy the full version.

Since you get unlimited clicks, there's not much mystery or skill involved in the game, but you do get a sneak preview of the album and, as the layers of the song unfurl, you also get the picture of just how textured and intricate the band's songs are.

Until 17 March, there is meant to be a new track to reveal each week and this week, if you get the right square, you'll also discover "Mirrorball", another intoxicating gem with one of the most beautiful piano refrains to be used by a rock/pop band.

Also plugging their next album are Minnesota band Tapes '*Tapes. They're offering "Hang Them All", the first single off their second album Walk It Off, due in April, as a free download through their relaunched website www.tapesntapes .com. The band caused a storm at the 2006 South by South West festival in Texas, after which they were promptly signed by XL, and this upbeat, urgent guitar-fuelled track is just buzzing.

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