Arts and Entertainment Steve Mason

On an evening where the big news of the week was still a live talking point, there was precious little sympathy in a famed back room in Glasgow. “Did you hear what Frankie Boyle said about Thatcher?” asked Steve Mason, sometime Beta Band singer and now the proud-owner of an alias-spattered solo career which has recently taken a turn for the incisively political. It’s the old gag about spending the public money earmarked for the late former PM’s funeral on spades, then “everyone in Scotland can dig a hole and deliver her to Satan in person.”

T in the Park, Balado, Near Kinross

When Glastonbury takes a year off, smaller festivals have a chance to mark out for themselves as much of the massive void left behind as possible.

'We've still got it,' declares Ian Brown last night in Manchester

Stone Roses reunion gigs net £23m

The Stone Roses generated £23m for the Manchester economy by reuniting for a three-day musical extravaganza in their hometown, experts have estimated.

Ian Brown, lead singer of the Stone Roses, leaves court yesterday with his solicitor 'Mr Loophole' Nick Freeman

'Model citizen' Ian Brown escapes driving ban

Solicitor known as Mr Loophole makes passionate defence of Stone Roses frontman

King Lear, West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds

King Lear is a daunting prospect for any actor – so too for an audience. Uncompromising, dark and sprawling.

Album: Radiohead, KOL RMX 1234567 (XL)

If Radiohead's The King of Limbs wasn't quite abstruse enough for you, then this could be just what you're waiting for: 19 remixes of its eight tracks by dubstep and avant-rock producers – the best-known being Caribou, Four Tet and Modeselektor – most of whom seem to adopt the inscrutable manner of "Feral", whichever track they're remixing.

Song Intros: It's the start of something amazing

What's the best way to begin a pop song? Guitar? Drums? Wind? Donald MacInnes chooses 12 of the best intros in pop history

The Stone Roses to 'reunite'

The Stone Roses are set to reunite.

Ex-Stone Roses singer Ian Brown has driving charge dropped

Former Stone Roses frontman Ian Brown was told he was "free to go" by a court today after prosecutors dropped a driving charge against him.

Fionn Regan, University of London Union, London

Dark star of the plaid brigade

NME Godlike Genius award for Modfather Paul Weller

Chart veteran Paul Weller is to receive a top honorary prize at this year's NME Awards, the annual Godlike Genius title, it was announced today.

The Secret Garden, West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds

There are no silver bells, cockle shells or pretty maids but Mary's garden grows enchantingly in this new musical version of Frances Hodgson Burnett's novel. Mary, nimbly portrayed by Jayne Wisener, is certainly a contrary little girl. She's as rudely dismissive of her ayah in India as she is of the maid Martha Sowerby whom she encounters when, suddenly orphaned, she's shipped to England.

The Word On - Ian Brown, My Way

"There's an easy mastery of things previously introduced. The string beds, the mariachi horns, the deep mystical groove, they're all elements which have appeared in isolation on separate outings, but here are brought together in spectacular fashion." - musicomh.com

Observations: Dancing under the covers at new Shoreditch club night

The chirps, buzzes, choral harmonies and fuzzy bass-lines of the Los Angeles synth-pop duo the Bird & the Bee's cover of Rihanna's floor-filler "Don't Stop the Music" epitomise the soundtrack at Cover to Cover, a new club night in London's Shoreditch. The idea behind the night, held in the Queen of Hoxton on Curtain Road, is piled on zeal for great cover versions. We're not talking Mike Flowers on "Wonderwall", more Ian Brown murmuring through "Thriller" or "Billy Jean", or the Bronx – a hardcore outfit from Brooklyn – bouncing along to Prince's "I Would Die for You".

Album: Ian Brown, My Way, (Fiction)

Regrets? He's had a few. But then again...

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone
Amazon is buying Twitch for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?

What is the appeal of Twitch?

Amazon is buying the video-game-themed online streaming site for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?
Tip-tapping typewriters, ripe pongs and slides in the office: Bosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder

How bosses are making us work harder

As it is revealed that one newspaper office pumps out the sound of typewriters to increase productivity, Gillian Orr explores the other devices designed to motivate staff
Manufacturers are struggling to keep up with the resurgence in vinyl records

Hard pressed: Resurgence in vinyl records

As the resurgence in vinyl records continues, manufacturers and their outdated machinery are struggling to keep up with the demand
Tony Jordan: 'I turned down the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series nine times ... then I found a kindred spirit'

A tale of two writers

Offered the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series, Tony Jordan turned it down. Nine times. The man behind EastEnders and Life on Mars didn’t feel right for the job. Finally, he gave in - and found an unexpected kindred spirit
Could a later start to the school day be the most useful educational reform of all?

Should pupils get a lie in?

Doctors want a later start to the school day so that pupils can sleep later. Not because teenagers are lazy, explains Simon Usborne - it's all down to their circadian rhythms
Prepare for Jewish jokes – as Jewish comedians get their own festival

Prepare for Jewish jokes...

... as Jewish comedians get their own festival
SJ Watson: 'I still can't quite believe that Before I Go to Sleep started in my head'

A dream come true for SJ Watson

Watson was working part time in the NHS when his debut novel, Before I Go to Sleep, became a bestseller. Now it's a Hollywood movie, too. Here he recalls the whirlwind journey from children’s ward to A-list film set
10 best cycling bags for commuters

10 best cycling bags for commuters

Gear up for next week’s National Cycle to Work day with one of these practical backpacks and messenger bags
Paul Scholes: Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United

Paul Scholes column

Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United
Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo music review: A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it

Kate Bush shows a voice untroubled by time

A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it
Robot sheepdog technology could be used to save people from burning buildings

The science of herding is cracked

Mathematical model would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
Tyrant: Is the world ready for a Middle Eastern 'Dallas'?

This tyrant doesn’t rule

It’s billed as a Middle Eastern ‘Dallas’, so why does Fox’s new drama have a white British star?