Arts and Entertainment Strum as you are: Kurt Cobain

What is the best gig you've been to at Brixton Academy? Perhaps it's Public Enemy, or The Smiths' final show in 1986? Simon Parkes bought the seminal venue for £1 in 1982 and what stories he has to tell in his new memoir Live at the Brixton Academy: a Riotous Life in the Music Business.

Ballet Nacional de España, Coliseum, London

In the name of Spain's national dance company, "ballet" simply means dance; in this case, a watered-down flamenco that lacks force or passion. Only guest star Tamara Rojo, here deprived of her pointe shoes, gives this evening some energy.

Where to eat, drink and be merry

From fresh oysters in Kent to liquorice in Yorkshire, there are festivals to tempt foodies all summer long. David Graham and Fiona Roberts pick the tastiest

National cask ale week: 29 March-5 April

North-West

Chatting at gigs - You talkin' over me?

Last week Simon O'Hagan argued that audiences should stop chattering at rock gigs. Here musicians and promoters give their reaction

Observations: A respectful plea for silence at the Brixton Academy

There were three of them, and they were standing right in front of me, yelling into each other's ears, shrieking with laughter, and generally having a high old time. And why not? Well I'll tell you why not. While all this was going on, Vampire Weekend were up on stage, giving the first of two shows earlier this week at the Brixton Academy. And this trio of concert-goers were not alone in preferring each other's incessant high-volume chit-chat to listening to a terrific performance by the zestful New Yorkers. There were plenty of other people around us who happily chatted their way through the music, and during the quieter songs a hubbub of conversation could be heard all over the auditorium.

God's Garden, Linbury Studio, London<br/>Breathing Irregular, Gate, London

Don't tell the bride &ndash; there are oats to sow in paradise

Travel Agenda: National Maritime Museum Cornwall; San Francisco's Asian Art Museum; Amanyara resort

Today: Throw light on the towers that protect ships from hazardous coastlines: the National Maritime Museum Cornwall in Falmouth opens an exhibition entitled "Lighthouses: Life on the Rocks". Running for two years, it will display a four-ton optic, reconstructed living quarters, artefacts, photos and narratives (nmmc.co.uk).

HMV looks to diversify with &#163;46m bid for Mama Group

Live music firm supports bid, but HMV faces battle with rival shareholder

Go-ahead for Ticketmaster and Live Nation tie-up

The mega-merger of ticketing giant Ticketmaster with the world's largest concert promoter, Live Nation, was given the all-clear by UK regulators today.

Phone thieves "targeting more live music gigs"

Music-lovers watching their favorite acts at live concerts are increasingly becoming targets for gangs of mobile phone thieves, British police said today.

Ruck and Maul: O'Driscoll still feeling hungry as big round figure approaches

The magnificent Brian O'Driscoll will win his 100th Test cap when he captains Ireland in their opening autumn international against Australia at Croke Park today: the reigning Grand Slam champions hosting the Wallabies, who are on the second leg of their own Slam hunt after defeating England 18-9 at Twickenham. "Australia are a very smart team, the smartest in world rugby," said O'Driscoll. "They think about how to break down defences, they're able to adapt on the pitch, changing from Plan A if they need to. That makes them dangerous, but also a great challenge. I have great hunger for the game at the moment and hopefully we'll pick up where we left off in March." Australia have lost twice on their last three visits to Dublin, which is but one example of the men in green's resurgence, while O'Driscoll – who made his debut in 1999 and has a respectable record of 39 wins in 56 matches as captain – has been around. "Keith Wood was the last Irish captain I played under and that feels like an eternity ago," he said. As he becomes rugby's 11th Test centurion, the 30-year-old centre has indicated his intention to play until the next World Cup in 2011 at least, but he would have to go on beyond that to reach former Australia scrum-half George Gregan's record of 139 caps. Second-placed Jason Leonard is a more feasible target on 119. Those queueing up behind O'Driscoll in the 90s include John Hayes and Ronan O'Gara (Ireland), Martyn Williams (Wales), Chris Paterson (Scotland) and South Africa's John Smit.

UB40, The Rainbow Courtyard, Birmingham

They have had number one singles across the globe and sold millions of albums. But this week, UB40 - a band more used to playing to packed stadia, stepped out onto the stage of a much smaller venue, the 350-capacity Rainbow Courtyard.

Live Nation deal with Ticketmaster blocked

Regulator rules UK businesses may have to be sold to overcome objections as companies claim deal crucial to future of ailing industry

Music degrees change to reflect rise of live music

Of all the pleasures in life, music must be one of the cheapest. You can turn on the radio, download a track for less than a pound or buy a CD. Even live gigs often cost less than a restaurant meal or trip to the theatre.

Arts and Entertainment
Banksy's 'The Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' in Bristol
art'Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' followed hoax reports artist had been arrested and unveiled
News
Pistorius leaves Pretoria High Court to be taken to prison
news

Voices
Stephanie first after her public appearance as a woman at Rad Fest 2014
voices

Life and Style
tech

Board creates magnetic field to achieve lift

News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
James Blunt's debut album Back to Bedlam shot him to fame in 2004
music

Singer says the track was 'force-fed down people's throats'

News
news

Endangered species spotted in a creek in the Qinling mountains

Life and Style
tech

Company says data is only collected under 'temporary' identities that are discarded every 15 minutes

News
peopleJust weeks after he created dress for Alamuddin-Clooney wedding
Life and Style
A street vendor in Mexico City sells Dorilocos, which are topped with carrot, jimaca, cucumber, peanuts, pork rinds, spices and hot sauce
food + drink

Trend which requires crisps, a fork and a strong stomach is sweeping Mexico's streets

Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Vietnam & Cambodia
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Bruges
India & Nepal
Japan
Berlin, Dresden, Meissen & Colditz
Prices correct as of 17 October 2014
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album