Arts and Entertainment

Vinyl is shedding its image as a retro novelty as a new generation discovers cover art, liners and great sound

Album: Diva, The Glitter End (Critical Heights)

The LA indie queen Diva Dompé displays a "kooky" avant-gardism on her solo debut: she's like a MIA minus the rhythm and politics.

The Decemberists, Hammersmith Apollo, London

Few bands are without an identifiable frontman or woman, but some are more front than others. Oregon six-piece The Decemberists are a case in point.

Caught in the Net: Raise a jar to Gang Gang Dance

The Brooklyn experimentalists Gang Gang Dance re-enter the fray with their fifth album, Eye Contact, released on 4AD in May. Recently, they unveiled the opening track from the record – "Glass Jar" is streaming at ganggangdance. com. At a little over 11-minutes long, they're certainly in no rush.

British Sea Power, Forum, London

The stage is filled with amps, microphones, musical instruments and trees. An old film is rolling in the background, the members of British Sea Power getting off a train, mumbling something indecipherable and walking off screen. Moments later, the Brighton six-piece emerge, utter a brief "hello" and launch straight into their set, their barrier-hugging acolytes' screams of excitement matching the band's first tracks decibel for decibel.

Arctic Monkeys turn down 'six figure' garden party offer

Arctic Monkeys reportedly turned down a six figure sum to play at a neighbourhood garden party.

Album: The Decemberists, The King is Dead (Rough Trade)

Kicking off with a Dylanesque blast of harmonica, the Decemberists reveal their new intent right up-front.

Album: British Sea Power, Valhalla Dancehall (Rough Trade)

Power and glory – a panoramic take on protest pop

All Tomorrow's Parties, Butlins Holiday Camp, Minehead

It's 10 years since Butlins holiday camp was first taken over by twee indie-folksters Belle & Sebastian for their Bowlie Weekender. Since then, the All Tomorrow's Parties festivals have become a fixture of the musical year. To celebrate, Butlins hosted Bowlie 2, again curated by Belle & Sebastian.

Dirty Projectors, Koko, London

Dirty Projectors have been cutting a defiant swathe through the indie scene, in various guises, for the past eight years, gathering an impressive list of collaborators along the way. So it comes as something of a surprise when front man, and the axis around which Dirty Projectors revolves, David Longstreth reveals to the audience that their first UK show was as recent as 2007. Following the release of last year's "Bitte Orca", sixth out of seven albums from Longstreth, it's almost impossible to imagine a time before Dirty Projectors, so established is their talent.

Best Coast, Scala, London

Best Coast are the current darlings of the indie scene. Fronted by a stoner pin-up, Bethany Cosentino, the band are nominally members of the "chillwave" movement, a loosely aligned bunch of music-making slackers. But Best Coast's especially laconic take on "classic" US indie shares little with the rest of the scene, which tends to produce sparse, haunting electro instead of asinine surf rock.

Album: Stars and Sons, Good Morning Mother (Twice Burnt)

Stars and Sons are part of a new wave of British art-pop that seems to believe that the more you add to a song, the better it gets, when the obverse is often demonstrably true.

Young & Lost Club celebrates its 50th release

Begun by two teenagers in 2005, the singles label is now on its 50th release. To mark the occasion, founders Nadia Dahlawi and Sara Jade have pulled together 35 tracks that document the vibrancy of London's music scene.

Interview: Kele Okereke

While his reputation as a difficult interviewee precedes him, I was still excited to get a chance to talk to Kele Okereke at the Creators Project last weekend. I figured that since I wasn’t going to be asking him what he had for breakfast, or doing a meta-piece on his disdain for the interviewing process, as the NME tried in 2005, I’d be ok.

Mystery Jets, Somerset House, London

Mystery Jets' apparent popularity has always been rather confusing.

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Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us