The Year in Review: Best gigs of 2010
Friday 24 December 2010
GIGS By Andy Gill
Solomon Burke (above)Jazz Café, London
Just weeks before his death, Solomon Burke put on the show of the year, a masterclass in magnetic charisma, gestural nuance and vocal expression which proved that it isn't necessary to wrestle a song into submission to imbue it with soul.
Arcade Fire (left)Hackney Empire; O2 Arena, LondonAmongst other things, 2010 was the year in which Arcade Fire assumed their position at rock's top table. Their Hackney Empire show was a glorious affirmation which all but burst the room apart; their O2 show proved that even a 20,000-seat arena was barely big enough to house their expansive anthems.
Pere UbuThe Garage, London
Pere Ubu's delivery of their first and last albums back-to-back involved one of the year's most extraordinary performances from singer David Thomas, clearly taking his title role in Ubu Roi to enraged new extremes as he vented his drunken fury on all and sundry – to the audience's evident delight.
MidlakeWilton's Music Hall, London
There was an aptness about Midlake showcasing their new album, steeped in antiquity and folk roots, in Britain's oldest surviving music hall. It gave a suitably haunted ambience for songs of rustic yearning delivered in delicate guitar threnodies laced with duetting flutes.
The UnthanksUnion Chapel, London
Another perfect alliance of performance and location, Rachel and Becky Unthank's show at the Union Chapel comprised interpretations of the songs of Antony and the Johnsons and Robert Wyatt, both men's gentle defiance evoked by the Unthanks' airily piquant voices.
Grace Dent on TV The Secret Life of the Pub is sexist, ageist and a breath of fresh air
Art Megumi Igarashi criticises Japan's 'backwards' attitude to women's sexual expression
tv Singer could become the most unlikely star of Westeros
Ray Davies' Sunny Afternoon scoops the most awardsTheatre
Grace DentChannel 4 show proves there's no app for happiness
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin file for divorce after 10 years of marriage
- 2 Rarest Beanie Baby bought for just £10 at car boot sale could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
- 3 Katie Hopkins and The Sun editor David Dinsmore reported to police for incitement to racial hatred following migrant boat column
- 4 Bookies now say Ed Miliband is more likely to be prime minister than David Cameron
- 5 Australian student Tommy Connolly, 23, adopts his pregnant, homeless 17-year-old cousin to give her a chance at 'a better life'
Safe House, TV review: Plenty of teasers to keep us guessing but spare us the cliches
Britain's Got Talent 2015: RSPCA investigating Marc Metral's miming dog after cruelty complaints
Star Wars: Rogue One trailer: Watch the teaser for the Jedi-less Death Star heist film
Avengers Age of Ultron 'after credits' scene leaks online days before cinema release
Louis Tomlinson is launching his own record label and has already 'signed two acts'
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
Katie Hopkins on LBC: Listen to caller taking The Sun columnist to task over migrant comments