Arts and Entertainment

"Welcome to the afterli-i-ife" is trilled like a creepy lullaby at the beginning of CocoRosie's fifth album.

Album: Vetiver, Tight Knit, (Bella Union)

It was never going to be easy to follow up a debut album that featured Devendra Banhart and Joanna Newsom, and, sure enough, Andy Cabic's fourth Vetiver album finds the San Francisco-based musician treading water.

Album: Andrew Bird, Noble Beast, (Bella Union)

Birdwatchers rejoice – the familiar markings are all here: pizzicato violins, whistling, linguistic gymnastics.

Television in 2008: Drama-wise there was more to admire than to love in 2008

In terms of good old-fashioned investigative work that has consequences, Pedigree Dogs Exposed (BBC1) was a palpable hit, showing up such pathetic inertia in the Kennel Club's attitude to inbreeding that it has resulted in the suspension of BBC coverage of Crufts.

Fleet Foxes: Are a hairy bunch of young folk-rockers inventing a new sound of Seattle?

The Junction in Cambridge is a nondescript venue: a white box, plonked in the middle of a retail park surrounded by gaudy chain restaurants, overlooked by a terrifying giant snowman. This is all that Fleet Foxes – Seattle's greatest musical export since you-know-who – will see of the city, but they're probably too exhausted to care, having already completed a dozen or so dates on their sold-out UK tour. Backstage in a dressing-room, marvelling at the hundreds of penis drawings on the walls, lead singer and songwriter Robin Pecknold sighs long and hard.

Album: Noah and the Whale, Peaceful, the World Lays Me Down (Mercury)

Anti-folk pushing the twee-ometer off the scale

David Lister: Listen to Nigel

The Week in Arts: When Nigel speaks, people should listen

Joanna Newsom, Somerset House, London

In 2007, Joanna Newsom toured her spellbinding, wordy second album Ys backed by international orchestras. Now that Ys has just about sunk in – and acquired a cult classic status – the Californian harpist and singer is back on her own again. On the Somerset House stage, it's just Newsom, her golden harp and her long, golden hair. And those harp-plucking hands, which look like yours or mine, but are anything but. When she hits a bum note – which isn't very often – it's reassuring rather than disappointing, as it proves that Newsom is, in fact, human.

Latitude Festival, Southwold, Suffolk

All points of the musical compass

Album: Karen Dalton, Green Rocky Road (Megaphone)

Karen Dalton hated the tag "folk music’s answer to Billie Holiday". What she would have made of being labelled "the best singer you’ve never heard of" by a broadsheet last year will remain anyone’s guess, since Dalton died in 1993.

The no-hit wonders that music refused to forget

As the latest 'failures' to be discovered long after their demise are rehabilitated on CD, Chris Mugan selects some of the other bands it took us a long, long time to appreciate

Album: Rasputina

Oh Perilous World (Filthy Bonnet Co)

Joanna Newsom, ICA, London

Ridiculous, then sublime

Album: Joanna Newsom

The Milk-Eyed Mender, Drag City

Album: Devendra Banhart

Rejoicing in the Hands, Young God / XL
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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