The Bonus Track: Siouxsie's open letter, Samantha Crain, and new tracks from Arcade Fire
A sideways look at the world of music
No one can be quite sure of who exactly declared this open season for the “open letter”, but now that the floodgates have burst there is no stemming the flow. First up, as you might have read elsewhere, came Sinead vs Miley. Then Sufjan Stevens got in on the act with a light-hearted pop at the very same pop princess, this time for her lack of grammatical awareness (see sufjan.com). And now there is this: from the “first lady of punk”, Siouxsie Sioux, to the chief executive of Fortnum & Mason on the subject of foie gras. Video killed the radio star? More a case of the internet hammering the final blow into the art of writing the protest song.
New talent alert!
There is not much that is more irritating than music writers banging on about stuff coming up that the general public can’t listen to yet, but let’s just say that Bonus Track is rather excited about Kid Face, the upcoming album by Samantha Crain, a new signing to Full Time Hobby and one of Rolling Stone magazine’s “ must see acts” at this year’s SXSW. The album is not out until next year (so we’ll say nothing til then except: think a dark Gillian Welch), but you can download “For the Miner” here.
If someone were to compile a list of “songs you think you don’t know but have heard a gazillion times”, the 1969 track “Long Red” by Mountain would be right up there (no pun intended). Sampled by Jay-Z, Common, Kanye and Lana Del Rey, even more extraordinary is the fact that the song’s co-writer, Leslie West, is still releasing rocking records in spite of losing a leg to diabetes in 2011. His new album Still Climbing is out now. Listen to “Long Red” here.
Next week’s biggie …
Kevin Harley reviews Arcade Fire’s Reflektor. Watch a cameo-studded three-song video here
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 BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
- 2 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 3 18th century sex toy found in 'toilet of sword fighting school' in Poland
- 4 'I wish my teacher knew...': Young students share their 'heartbreaking' worries in notes
- 5 Rebecca Francis accuses Ricky Gervais of using 'influence' to target female hunters after receiving barrage of death threats
Better Call Saul creator Peter Gould on the creative concerns of a prequel, season 2 and the mind-numbing realities of the small courts
Britain's Got Talent 2015: RSPCA investigating Marc Metral's miming dog after cruelty complaints
Star Wars 7: The Force Awakens trailer: The most extreme fan reactions on Twitter
The Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice trailer has leaked – watch
Madonna might be a stand-up comedy virgin - but she wasn't terrible
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
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a white stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
Russian warships in English Channel 'to conduct anti-aircraft and anti-submarine military drills'