David Bowie’s first new album for a decade is leading the field for this year’s Barclaycard Mercury Prize, which has returned to the mainstream after 2012’s shortlist was dubbed the “most obscure” in recent history.
“I’ve forgot the words,” sings Alex Turner at the climax of the encore "505". It is the last song of Arctic Monkeys’ London iTunes festival headline slot (and an established fixture on the band’s setlist for several years) on the day their much-lauded new album AM is released.
Music veteran David Bowie has crowned his comeback this year by topping the nominations for the Q Awards.
The Rolling Stones might have been who everybody talked about, but Glastonbury’s final headliners seem to have benefitted most from their exposure on the Pyramid stage this weekend as Mumford & Sons are heading for number one – despite not having released a new record.
By any critical measure, the NME’s annual tour package of four thrusting young acts broadcasting their sound to the nation has once again chosen well from a pool of artists who are unheard-of, just-rising or deserving of a step-up now their careers are well the way.
‘Fame can make you big-headed and add too much swagger’
Charity proves to be a running theme tonight - Paul Weller not only headlines for the second year running in aid of the homeless, but gives a leg-up to a younger acolyte. The Modfather ventures on stage early to join Miles Kane, a Mini-me to the veteran artist with his own feather cut and sharp threads.
Three years ago they were playing gigs in the upstairs rooms of student pubs in Leeds. Today they wake up as the next big thing in British pop. Such are the whims of the Mercury Prize.
As Lady Gaga reveals tacky artwork for her new CD, Simon Hardeman cringes at 10 other violations of taste and sense
One is a notoriously nervous comedian, the other a pop star renowned for his reticence. Craig McLean mediates a meeting between the men behind this month's hottest Brit flick
After a Christmas fire which put them out of action, the Old Vic Tunnels reopened triumphantly last week with a series of gigs by the cult New York band Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros. Before their energetic set, during which Skins star Nicholas Hoult led the moshing, gig-goers were entertained by acrobats, firebreathers and theatre pieces.
Arctic Monkeys reportedly turned down a six figure sum to play at a neighbourhood garden party.
Sheffield's Warp Records celebrates its 20th anniversary in September. Nick Hasted looks back on the cutting-edge electronica/indie label that has produced acts as diverse as Aphex Twin, Boards of Canada, Grizzly Bear and Maxïmo Park
If Favourite Worst Nightmare was a sketchbook of Arctic Monkeys' responses to their vertiginous success then Humbug seems to represent the more considered comedown after a few years pursuing alternative diversions.
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