Life and Style

Now this is a place with real pedigree. I don't mean it used to be owned by Pierre Koffmann or helmed by Marco Pierre White or picked up a Michelin star under Raymond Blanc. Oh no. In Edwardian times it was a theatre-cum-dancehall-cum-bioscope (an early form of cinema, where punters could watch footage of King Edward VIII's funeral).

Album: Antibalas, Antibalas (Daptone)

With their fifth album, the Brooklyn-based Antibalas show themselves to be almost as potent an Afrobeat ensemble as even the late Fela Kuti's greatest bands.

Album: Chris Smither, Hundred Dollar Valentine (CRS/ Signature Sounds)

A first wholly self-composed album by the white-country-bluesman and his furred-over smear of a voice. How big was that bushel?

Graham Coxon

Fantasy Band: Graham Coxon, Blur

'Mitch Mitchell wasn't the most accurate drummer ever, but he had that swing...'

Album: Ravi Coltrane, Spirit Fiction (Blue Note)

The Blue Note debut by saxophonist Coltrane (yes, the son of Alice and John, who died when Ravi was two) can be as frustratingly tentative as his first outing for RCA 15 years ago.

Fantasy Band: Jeremy Warmsley, Summer Camp

'Billie Holiday has the softest, roundest tone in the world'
Chris Baio, Vampire Weekend

Fantasy Band: Chris Baio, Vampire Weekend

'I like sparse, pretty guitar lines... and Romy Madley-Croft is great at writing and playing them'

Album: Joe Walsh, Analog Man (Decca/Concord

A first outing in 20 years by the sometime Eagle, goodtimey master of the slugging riff and the sardonic aside.

Album: Gavin Barras Quintet, Day of Reckoning (ASC)

The first jazz response to last summer's riots, inspired by bassist Barras's experience travelling back from a gig at Ronnie Scott's to his home in Manchester, where he watched TV news with the sound down as he composed the material for this album.

Album: Pat Metheny, Unity Band (Nonesuch)

A partial return to top form for the widdly-diddly axe-meister.

Tom Vek

Fantasy Band: Tom Vek

Fantasy Band: Delilah

'I'm not even sure Kanye can play the drums, but I bet he'd pick it up'

Fantasy Band: Django Django

'We'd get Bootsy Collins to dress the band...'

Album: Holly Golightly featuring the Brokeoffs, Long Distance (Damaged Goods)

Golightly, best known outside the cognoscenti for duetting with Jack White on "It's True That We Love One Another", is on her 13th album now (not counting her work with Thee Headcoatees, among others), and Long Distance is no radical departure.

Echoa, Sadler’s Wells

Children’s show Echoa came to Sadler’s Wells as part of a Family Weekend, which featured workshops and activities as well as performances.

Soldiers carry the body of the chairman of Somali football federation Said Mugabe

Top sports officials killed in Somalia bomb attack

National theatre blast, blamed on Islamic extremists, shatters hopes of recovery in Mogadishu

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

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Fifa corruption arrests

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Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor
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Joe Root: 'Ben Stokes gives everything – he’s rubbing off on us all'

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Raif Badawi: Wife pleads for fresh EU help as Saudi blogger's health worsens

Please save my husband

As the health of blogger Raif Badawi worsens in prison, his wife urges EU governments to put pressure on the Saudi Arabian royal family to allow her husband to join his family in Canada