Arts and Entertainment Festival-goers play on the human chess board from the cult TV series The Prisoner

First day of Portmeirion-based festival hosts Everything Everything and James Blake

Festival No.6 asks... Everything Everything

We spoke to Everything Everything's Jeremy Pritchard ahead of his band's appearance at Festival No. 6.

Kevin Shields of My Bloody Valentine

My Bloody Valentine to headline Festival No.6

My Bloody Valentine have been announced as the final headliner at Festival No.6 in September.

Springwatch presenter Chris Packham

The Clash get surreptitious Springwatch namecheck from host Chris Packham

Springwatch host Chris Packham embarked on his latest song challenge tonight by slipping the names of songs by punk pioneers The Clash into the show.

Beach activities during Beach Break Live festival at Pembrey Country Park last year

Festivals – but not as we know them: the next generation of music weekenders is here

Music in a muddy field? No, summer rock has changed

Album: Plan B, Ill Manors (Atlantic/674)

We've had to wait a very long time for a record like this.

Paul McCartney will play the MEN Arena in Manchester on 19 December and Echo Arena in Liverpool on 20 December

A cultural Christmas: The best films, shows, art, comedy, gigs and dance over the festive season

Looking forward to watching The Great Escape again? Or listening to that Christmas CD one more time? Why not go out instead?! Miranda Kiek and Ben Walsh select the best cultural treats on offer

Leading article: False notes

Musicians like to think they are writing songs for people like themselves, but they can be sorely mistaken, as Tom Petty found when his anthem "American Girl" was blasted out before the right-wing US presidential candidate Michelle Bachmann took the stage. He promptly sent her a "cease and desist" letter.

Michael Sheen plays Jesus in hometown Passion play

While most of the nation relaxed, and some of the populace ate their own body weight in chocolate at the Easter weekend, Michael Sheen endured incarceration in a police cell, slept rough up a mountain, and was crucified, then resurrected in front of hundreds of onlookers.

Between The Covers: 27/03/2011

Your weekly guide to what's really going on inside the world of books

The Agitator, Barfly, London<br/>Manic Street Preachers, Hard Rock Caf&#233;, London<br/>Gang of Four, NME Awards Show, London

I've heard the sound of student protest, 21st-century style, and it's doo-wop

Manic Street Preachers, Brixton Academy, London

The savage rip in the Manic Street Preachers' life was, of course, the disappearance and likely death of Richey Edwards in 1995. The loss of their friend and bandmate still brought Nicky Wire close to traumatised tears when he spoke of it last year. Musically too, there was the rupture of the giant stadium-filling singles they wrote afterwards, the almost guiltily ironic achievement of the subversive dreams they and Richey had. Tonight's tremendous, happy gig shows that that scar is healing over.

The Great British Faith, Radio 2, Monday<br/>No Angel, Radio 2, Saturday

It's an odd world when 2 becomes 4

Richard, By Ben Myers

A curiously blunt stab at a rock icon

Hurts, The Ritz, Manchester<br/>Everything Everything, Scala, London

Emotion is always hovering near the severely tailored surface of Eighties-inspired duo Hurts

Diary: Manic street preaching

Do the members of the strident Welsh rock band Manic Street Preachers volunteer their political insights in interviews, or do their interlocutors feel obliged to request them? Earlier this month lead singer James Dean Bradfield gave his considered opinion on the Coalition, specifically the "disingenuous snakeyness" of Deputy PM Nick Clegg, to Wales on Sunday (you'd almost think he had a new album to promote). His bandmate Nicky Wire chimed in: "Surely someone must be inspired to say what a [dreadful fellow] Nick Clegg is? He is the David Brent of [ahem] politics. He's like a bad motivational speaker." Now, Wire expounds upon the mental state of former PM Tony Blair, to "You just see something in Tony Blair's eyes and you just know he's forever broken," said the bassist, speculating on Blair's guilt about the Iraq war. "You can see it in his eyes. A shell of a man, really." Wire admitted he hadn't actually read the great man's memoir, A Journey, because he "[doesn't] like hardbacks, really."

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