Sunday 12 May 1996
Various Artists: Kids (London, CD/tape). Those already bored with all the fuss about Larry Clark's grisly teenage porn-fest might find solace in this excellent soundtrack album. Far from the usual melange of major- label tat, this is a fine selection of original work from some of the leading lights of the thriving US lo-fi underground. The major player is inspirationally overwrought Sebadoh songsmith Lou Barlow, whose intriguing spin-off group Folk Implosion scored a crossover hit in America with the hypnotic "Natural One", but Daniel Johnston's crazy cameo - in tribute to Casper the Friendly Ghost - all but steals the show. Ben Thompson
Palace Music: Arise Therefore (Domino, CD/LP/tape). On first, second and third hearings, this fourth album from Louisville troubador Will Oldham is a bit of a disappointment, but prolonged exposure to its sombre magic reveals it to be the most extraordinary piece of hardcore introspection since Nick Drake's Pink Moon. Far more austere than last year's Viva Last Blues, this is a record of shadowy absences and dark departures. The music - muted piano, spindly guitar, hopalong bass and occasional drum-machine - is prairie sparse, and Oldham's voice is cracked and parched as a donkey's bridle, but his eloquence refreshes the parts other lyricisms cannot reach. BT
Flynn and Flora: Native Drums (distributed by Vital, CD/LP). Intelligent, spacy, trip-hop drum'n'bass by a Bristolian duo whose roots go back to the Fresh Four's "Wishing on a Star" hit of 1989. Stitched together on the sound-recordist's equivalent of the kitchen table, using an antique sampler and drum machine, the music arranges bits and bobs of jazz, house and movie soundtracks into a satisfyingly ambient whole, while the rhythmic legs whirr round at the customary 160bpm. Phil Johnson
Books And it is whizzpopping!
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Video of Irish 'professional boxer' fighting Istanbul neighbourhood goes viral in Turkey
- 2 Novel Scarlett Johansson tried to ban, Grégoire Delacourt’s The First Thing You See, to be published in UK
- 3 A pint of water every day is the key to losing weight, scientists say
- 4 Russia 'accidentally reveals' number of its soldiers killed in eastern Ukraine
- 5 Carol Vorderman reveals she is 'covered in burns' after she fell off her treadmill while running naked
Game of Thrones season 6: Jon Snow theorists believe the Stark may have a twin sister
Friends fan comes up with horribly dark alternative ending to sitcom
Artist takes LSD, draws herself over different stages of the 9-hour trip to show its effects
Dismaland: The artists doing cooler things than Banksy at his 'bemusement park'
Novel Scarlett Johansson tried to ban, Grégoire Delacourt’s The First Thing You See, to be published in UK
Dresden riots: Protesters in Germany attack refugee buses shouting 'foreigners out'
France train shooting: US soldiers speak of the moment they stopped gunman and 'beat him until he was unconscious'
Labour leadership: Jeremy Corbyn accused of 'deluding' young supporters with 'claptrap'
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Iain Duncan Smith calls for urgent ESA overhaul as part of drive to cut down welfare costs