Arts and Entertainment

Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow

The Child Of Lov, The Child Of Lov (Double Six)

Album review: The Child Of Lov, The Child Of Lov (Double Six)

The Child Of Lov is Cole Williams, a reclusive bedroom soundscaper flushed into the open courtesy of this debut album, which marries disjointed beats with hoarse, high soul vocals.

Album: Various artists, Liberation Music (BGP)

Louis Armstrong singing spiritual-jazz anthem "The Creator Has a Masterplan" (and sounding great) is one of the more bizarre experiences on this neat compendium of black consciousness from the vaults of Bob Thiele's Flying Dutchman label.

The Phoenix Foundation, Fandango (Memphis Industries)

Album review: The Phoenix Foundation, Fandango (Memphis Industries)

For their follow-up to 2011’s acclaimed Buffalo, New Zealand psych-poppers The Phoenix Foundation chose to ignore the “short-form game” of contemporary pop and make “Test Match music” – an indication of the double-album length of Fandango which, alas, also  hints at its yawning longueurs.

George Jackson: Songwriter who penned hundreds of soul, rock and r'n'b tunes

George Jackson, who died in his Mississippi home on 14 April at the age of 68 after a year-long struggle against cancer, was the co-author of "Old Time Rock and Roll" and hundreds of other soul, rock and rhythm and blues tunes. Jackson recorded dozens of singles in the 1960s but made his mark as a writer, beginning with FAME Studios. He later was a songwriter for Muscle Shoals Sound Studios. When Malaco bought Muscle Shoals Sound, it hired Jackson to write songs.

Album: Shuggie Otis, Inspiration Information/ Wings of Love (Legacy)

If guitarist-auteur Otis's killer 1973 album Inspiration Information has somehow passed you by, you need to get it now.

Rokia Traoré, Beautiful Africa (Nonesuch)

Album review: Rokia Traoré, Beautiful Africa (Nonesuch)

The daughter of a Malian diplomat, Rokia Traoré is perhaps the most naturally cross-cultural of her country's abundant musical offspring, effortlessly blending styles and sounds as easily as she switches between languages.

Album: Sally Shapiro, Somewhere Else (Paper Bag)

If you haven't heard this Swedish singer/producer duo before, then track title "This City's Local Italo Disco DJ Has a Crush on Me" tells you what to expect.

Album: Atoms for Peace, Amok (XL)

AFP is the supergroup formed by Radiohead's Thom Yorke, Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea, producer Nigel Godrich, drummer-for-hire Joey Waronker and Brazilian percussionist Mauro Refosco. If you're still reading, I salute you, but despite that terrifying opening sentence, Amok is not an unpleasant listen.

Allen Stone, Singer, 25

Allen Stone, Dingwalls, London


"I'm going to do something I never do," confesses Allen Stone. "I've got a song called 'The Fly' I wrote two days ago in my hotel room I'd like to sing to you." It's a courageous and daft act from this resolutely bland American soul singer.

Album: Jamie Lidell, Jamie Lidell (Warp)

If appearing on the soundtrack of Grey's Anatomy leads more people to investigate Jamie Lidell's music, they ought to enjoy what they find.

Richard Thompson, Electric (Proper)

Album review: Richard Thompson, Electric (Proper)

Recorded at Buddy Miller's Nashville home studio with little more than his core trio, Electric finds Richard Thompson at his most stripped-down and potent, spinning cautionary tales of misplaced wanderers, foolish would-be lotharios, depressed factory workers and dangerously charismatic women with a punch and urgency belied by their often reflective manner.

Album review: Wave Machines, Pollen (Neapolitan)

Liverpool art-rockers Wave Machines return, after three years, with a chiselled record of synth pop, rich with squiggles and shimmer.

Album: Sinkane, Mars (City Slang)

A grooving gun for hire conjures up a magical mix

IoS album review: Jabula, Thunder and Happiness: The Complete Albums (Cherry Red)

This band of South African exiles formed in London in 1974, and over two years produced two albums, both of which feature on this CD

Friendly Fires to host charity gig after the death of their friend

Mercury Prize-nominated band Friendly Fires are staging a star-studded charity gig after the death of their friend Adam Connolly last week.

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Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'