Arts and Entertainment

A sideways look at the world of music

The Queen ‘plotted to hit Idi Amin with a sword’ if he visited Britain

Revelations from Lord Mountbatten’s diary show royal concerns over Ugandan dictator

Fans will be able to rock out to Led Zeppelin on Spotify soon

Led Zeppelin back catalogue comes to Spotify

The albums will be released onto the streaming service over the next four days

Aaron Dessner from The National has called for other artists to support Spotify

The National call on musicians to give Spotify a chance

The band said the streaming service should be supported if it encourages people to like their music and go to their shows

Ben Whishaw has been confirmed to play Freddie Mercury in a biopic about the Queen frontman

Ben Whishaw to play Freddie Mercury in Dexter Fletcher film

The actor will replace Sacha Baron Cohen, who left the production in July

New research into the 'deep biosphere' indicates that the first replicating life-forms on the planet may have originated deep underground

Life on Earth may have developed below rather than above ground, reveal scientists

New research into the “deep biosphere” indicates that the first replicating life-forms on the planet may have originated deep underground

Andy McSmith's Diary: An MP revealing his depression? It hardly seems like news any more

Slowly, the stigma of mental illness is falling away. Lunacy, as it was then called, used to rank alongside imprisonment and bankruptcy as automatic grounds for disqualifying an MP from remaining in the Commons.

Niall Horan, Liam Payne, Harry Styles, Louis Tomlinson and Zayn Malik of One Direction performing in New York

One Direction Midnight Memories, album review: 'A clumsy attempt at rock'

The boy band's third album is a fumbling transition from pop to rock

Video: Prince William, Taylor Swift and Jon Bon Jovi perform at palace charity gala

The Duke of Cambridge joined the musicians on stage for the finale

5 reasons to watch The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

As The Hunger Games sequel hits cinemas, we take a look at the best bits...

Songs: Ohia, The Magnolia Electric Co (Secretly Canadian) - Album review

Jason Molina died earlier this year. He was 39 years old. He released albums under the names Songs: Ohia and Magnolia Electric Co and sometimes even as plain Jason Molina. These albums didn’t sell a whole heap but they meant a lot to a few, and this one – released here in a “10th anniversary deluxe edition” – is arguably his best.

Postcard from... Madrid

Spain’s ageing rockers are officially in mourning after Barricada, one of the country’s best-known hard rock bands – who have ruined teenage eardrums and provoked parental cries of “Turn that racket down!” for more than a generation, began their Farewell Tour in their home town of Pamplona.

Party time: 'Tis the season to get sparkly with our pick of the festive make-up

Sunset Stripped Party Lashes £7.99, Katy Perry for Eylure, eylure.co.uk

Chas and Dave - Chas Hodges, Dave Peacock

Play it again, Chas: Chas & Dave make their big comeback

Hits such as Snooker Loopy, Rabbit and Gertcha established Chas & Dave as two of the towering figures of the 1980s light entertainment-pop cross over world. Now, 18 years since their last album the Rockney duo are being re-launched as the credible grandfathers of British rock n’ roll.

The Bonus Track: Chas & Dave documentary, Laura White post-X Factor and Lorde (not Lordi)

A sideways look at the world of music

Kurt Cobain's family home in Washington state

Kurt Cobain's childhood home up for sale

Cobain's family have increased the asking price due to the house's legacy

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Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine