Property

God, it makes you feel old to think that Girls Aloud are now a thing of the past. We shall not look upon their like again. Sniff. But anyway, thinking about that former cultural phenomenon recently, I had a moment of nostalgia recalling the video for "I Can't Speak French", in which the Girls flounce around in very short, corsetted can-can skirts, with layers upon layers of net and frills and feathers in various shades of pink and pale lilac-y colours.

Album: The Veronicas, Hook Me Up, (Sire)

The mystique of twins is a resonant trope in popular culture, from the Coens to the Everlys.

Ladyhawke, Koko, London

We all know that musically, 2009 has so far belonged to the ladies. But with all the attitude, confidence and personality that has strutted up and down stages all over the country care of Lady GaGa, Lily Allen, Florence and the Machine et al, Ladyhawke is in some ways the black sheep of the sisterhood. She may have the look and the tunes but what marks her act out as different is her crippling shyness and the lack of any attempt to form some sort of stage personality, the quirky moniker aside.

Girls Aloud, O2 Arena, London

Pop queens fulfil their promise

UK music exports hit record levels

*Music acts including Coldplay and Iron Maiden contributed to a stellar year for the UK industry as exports leapt to record levels.

Album: Pet Shop Boys, Yes, (Parlophone)

Just don't call it a return to form...

The trouble with Ashley Cole

The Chelsea star's recent escapade will only add to his bad reputation, writes Sam Wallace

Ashley Cole 'arrested for drunk and disorderly'

Chelsea and England footballer Ashley Cole was arrested earlier today after a drunken confrontation with police according to reports.

Has Lily Allen rejoined the sisterhood?

With her catfights and bitchy lyrics, she's never exactly been a girl's girl. But that's all changed now...

Thriller Live, Lyric Theatre, London

Is it a musical? Is it just a juke-box compilation show? Do we expect narrative complexity in our new musical theatre? Is there a life for pop music within the proscenium arch beyond Mamma Mia!? Or shall we resort to revivals of Sondheim and hope for the best from Andrew Lloyd Webber?

Party Of The Week: The Brit school of awards

Once symbolic of the eclecticism present in the UK music market – the meeting point, as it were, of Jarvis Cocker's buttocks and Michael Jackson's "Earth Song" – the Brit Awards these days tend to be dominated by mainstream pop-rockers and graduates of the Brit stage school.

Franz Ferdinand, Heaven, Under the Arches, London

Old favourites keep Franz's fans frenzied

Coldplay and Duffy lead Brit nominations

Coldplay and Duffy led the way at the Brit Awards nominations tonight with four nods apiece.

Kylie recruited to host Brit Awards



Kylie Minogue and Gavin and Stacey stars James Corden and Mathew Horne will present this year's Brit awards, organisers said.

PM says farewell to GMTV presenter

GMTV veteran Fiona Phillips signed off from the sofa for the final time today, with accolades from celebrities including David Beckham and the Prime Minister.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 30 January 2015
As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

Homeless Veterans appeal

The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

How books can defeat Isis

Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

Young carers to make dance debut

What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

Design Council's 70th anniversary

Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch
Dame Harriet Walter: The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment

Dame Harriet Walter interview

The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment
Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Critics of Tom Stoppard's new play seem to agree that cerebral can never trump character, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's winter salads will make you feel energised through February

Bill Granger's winter salads

Salads aren't just a bit on the side, says our chef - their crunch, colour and natural goodness are perfect for a midwinter pick-me-up
England vs Wales: Cool head George Ford ready to put out dragon fire

George Ford: Cool head ready to put out dragon fire

No 10’s calmness under pressure will be key for England in Cardiff
Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links