Independent Plus

Listen to the tracks mentioned in Caught in the Net below:

Pop: Rhythmic rumpus

Pop: Propellerheads

Music: Zowie! It's Howie and Robbie

Howie B, producer, remixer, engineer, record label boss, has worked with the bands of the moment. But Robbie Robertson? Fiona Sturges uncovers the secret of pop's unlikliest combo

Pop music: soundbites

Soundbites: Paul Godfrey, songwriter/DJ/beeps and loops man of Morcheeba

Album Reviews: Watercolour blues

Andy Gill's round-up

Pop music: The calm shall inherit the earth

Skye Edwards sings with Morcheeba, the dreamy, gentle trippy-hippy band. She's just made a single, an album - and a baby.

Letter: 20th century voices

Sir: I was surprised to read Paul McCann's article "BBC to tape the people's 20th century" (12 December).

Rock: Undeniably, Beth is back on top

Portishead, Dublin Olympia

Live and direct

Wall of Sound All Stars Special Mary Ann Hobbs' Show, Radio 1

On record: Bjork Homogenic One Little Indian TPLP71CD

Usually, that "difficult third album" problem results from lack of direction and paucity of material; with Homogenic, the opposite is more the case. Both Debut and Post impressed partly through their sheer variety - Bjork, it seemed, was brimful of ideas which wormed their ways into your affections. With Homogenic, she appears to have settled upon a formula, with most tracks featuring just a few orchestral flourishes, a shimmer of synthesiser and a drum track behind her vocals.

POP&JAZZ

Horace Andy, Jazz Cafe, London NW1 (0171-344 0044), tonight to 29 April

Review: Tricky; Hackney Empire / Shepherd's Bush Empire, London

Tricky's mind can't freeze long enough to be recorded. Since Maxinquaye's trip-hop trigger, he's been too edgy, too impatient, to stay in the studio honing the noises in his head. So we have to make do with creepy, insidious affairs like last year's Pre-Millennium Tension. Meanwhile, Tricky has darted from Jamaica to New York to New Orleans, reconnecting to hip-hop and reggae sources, forging ahead, smoking spliff, dropping albums and eps like it's a natural function, like he can't help it. And sometimes he plays gigs, where he only needs to focus for an hour or two. Given free, focused rein, on his two nights in London his talent was undeniable. The first night, in Hackney, had been advertised as an acoustic, seated show, some kind of hellish "unplugged". But Tricky had already changed his mind. The night would be odder than that.

Rock: Let's hear it for the roadie

Why are Wilco so damned likeable? Most pop music is retrogressive these days, and the American country-rockers more than most. At the Shepherd's Bush Empire they evoked a mighty arsenal of comparisons, the most obvious being early-Seventies Stones. But somehow they are always more than the sum of their parts.

Everything But the Girl Hammersmith Palais, London

It was all fields around here when Everything But the Girl started out. That was when an acoustic guitar, bad hair and a cardigan was all you needed to persuade forlorn undergraduates that their grant cheques would be better spent on your winsome tales of love gone astray than a Darkness at Noon study guide. It worked for a while, hence the emergence of an entire generation who can quote every sleeve note from the Eden album, but not a solitary word of Arthur Koestler. But the times, they a-changed. People started dancing. Yes, dancing. And not even in an ironic sense. Acoustic guitars were tossed on the bonfire (all right, so it was a metaphorical bonfire, but you get the gist). Which left Everything But the Girl looking anything but fashionable. So they changed.

Good? Bad? A Tricky question

ROCK
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Robert De Niro, Martin Scorsese and DiCaprio, at an awards show in 2010
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In this photo illustration a school student eats a hamburger as part of his lunch which was brought from a fast food shop near his school, on October 5, 2005 in London, England. The British government has announced plans to remove junk food from school lunches. From September 2006, food that is high in fat, sugar or salt will be banned from meals and removed from vending machines in schools across England. The move comes in response to a campaign by celebrity TV chef Jamie Oliver to improve school meals.
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