Album: Busta Rhymes, Back On My B.S. (Universal Motown)

It's not been a good century for Busta Rhymes who is struggling to repeat his early successes with his optimistically-titled Motown debut Back On My B.S. Frequently, when an album appears a 18 months behind schedule, it sounds dated and desperate, however loudly Busta proclaims himself "emperor of every round table in the house". British hip-hop was once the poor relation to its American cousin, but one searches in vain here for something with the spark and invention of a "Bonkers", or a Slime & Reason; instead, it's the usual tired celebrations of thug life and bling culture, with the usual parade of lazy guest spots. Lil Wayne turns up to brag about his cash on "Respect My Conglomerate", Akon and T.I. bring a little commercial polish to "Don't Believe Em", Busta's Flipmode Squad buddies get their taste on the aptly titled "We Want In", while the conscious crew of Jamie Foxx, Mary J. Blige, John Legend and Common sound like an afterthought on "Decision". Busta's best line is his boast in "Give Em What They Askin For" about how "I'm throwing money down just to please myself/I'm into self-preservation so I'll freeze myself"; but his career's cold enough, by the sound of it.

Spotlight on Ray Charles

You wouldn't necessarily picture Ray Charles, blues pianist and singer, engrossed in a game of chess. But a new book of previously unseen photographs taken by his manager and friend Joe Adams between the 1960s and the 1980s offers intriguing insights into the man.

Chess: the film of the music label

The latest musical biopic may be flawed, but the story it tells of a legendary blues and rock'n'roll label is compelling, writes Pierre Perrone

Mother of ‘Dreamgirls’ actress found murdered

The mother and brother of the Oscar-winning actress Jennifer Hudson were found murdered at their home in Chicago yesterday.

The Kingdom (15)

The Kingdom (DVD)

Retail & Rental, UNIVERSAL

How do I look?: Ozwald Boateng

Designer, age 41

England face gamble in rushing return of Harmison

England's cricketers have predictably rallied behind their captain, Andrew Flintoff, after the team's failure to defeat Sri Lanka in the first Test at Lord's. Flintoff received some criticism at the conclusion of the drawn match but he will be hoping to call on Stephen Harmison, his closest friend and staunchest ally, during the second Test which starts at Edgbaston this Thursday.

West's failure over climate change 'will kill 182m Africans'

The poorest people in the world will be the chief victims of the West's failure to tackle global warning, with millions of Africans forecast to die by the end of the century, Christian Aid says in a report out today.

Theatre: Do we believe in this Godot?

Waiting for Godot Royal Exchange, Manchester Collateral Damage Tricycle, London The Importance of Being Earnest Festival Theatre, Chichester The Late Middle Classes Richmond, London

Music: In concert: The one and the only...

Marc Cohn, Camden Dingwalls, London

Barely bobbing above the surface...

Head Above Water (15) Directed by: Jim Wilson. Starring: Harvey Keitel, Cameron Diaz.

Film: `Microcosmos': it's definitely got legs

Edgar Allan Poe tagged one of his macabre fables with a quotation to the effect that there is no truly exquisite beauty without some admixture of strangeness. He might well have been entranced by Microcosmos (U), which offers some incomparably strange and exquisite visions. The glistening liquid ballet of a couple of mating snails, for example, which squirm and ripple and pulse in unison, locked surface to luminous white surface in what the mammalian onlooker can only assume to be mollusc ecstasy, especially since the sound-track graces their coupling with a soaring aria. Unless you already dote on slime, you'll need to conquer mild feelings of disgust to relish the sight, but the effort is easier than you might have believed. Every frame of this gorgeous journey down into the insect world puts its idiosyncratic spin on the old maxim that small is beautiful.

A jump-cut above the rest

What is it about the hyperactive US cop series `Homicide' that makes it, and not the conspiracy-obsessed `X-Files', the true expression of Nineties malaise. By John O'Reilly

Damages for son who killed father

A DEVOTED son who battered his father to death while mentally unbalanced after a boating accident, was awarded pounds 225,000 agreed damages in the High Court yesterday for the psychological injuries that turned him into a killer.
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
Prices correct as of 20 February 2015
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable
Living with Alzheimer's: What is it really like to be diagnosed with early-onset dementia?

What is it like to live with Alzheimer's?

Depicting early-onset Alzheimer's, the film 'Still Alice' had a profound effect on Joy Watson, who lives with the illness. She tells Kate Hilpern how she's coped with the diagnosis
The Internet of Things: Meet the British salesman who gave real-world items a virtual life

Setting in motion the Internet of Things

British salesman Kevin Ashton gave real-world items a virtual life
Election 2015: Latest polling reveals Tories and Labour on course to win the same number of seats - with the SNP holding the balance of power

Election 2015: A dead heat between Mr Bean and Dick Dastardly!

Lord Ashcroft reveals latest polling – and which character voters associate with each leader
Audiences queue up for 'true stories told live' as cult competition The Moth goes global

Cult competition The Moth goes global

The non-profit 'slam storytelling' competition was founded in 1997 by the novelist George Dawes Green and has seen Malcolm Gladwell, Salman Rushdie and Molly Ringwald all take their turn at the mic
Pakistani women come out fighting: A hard-hitting play focuses on female Muslim boxers

Pakistani women come out fighting

Hard-hitting new play 'No Guts, No Heart, No Glory' focuses on female Muslim boxers
Leonora Carrington transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star

Surreal deal: Leonora Carrington

The artist transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star
LGBT History Month: Pupils discuss topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage

Education: LGBT History Month

Pupils have been discussing topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage
11 best gel eyeliners

Go bold this season: 11 best gel eyeliners

Use an ink pot eyeliner to go bold on the eyes with this season's feline flicked winged liner
Cricket World Cup 2015: Tournament runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

Cricket World Cup runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

The tournament has reached its halfway mark and scores of 300 and amazing catches abound. One thing never changes, though – everyone loves beating England
Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Heptathlete ready to jump at first major title

Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Ready to jump at first major title

After her 2014 was ruined by injury, 21-year-old Briton is leading pentathlete going into this week’s European Indoors. Now she intends to turn form into gold
Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot