Performance as therapy on a grand scale: Björk live

‘Will you be dancing?’ the man in front asks his friend before the lights go down. ‘Most likely,’ she says. Two songs in and it’s looking less…

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Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who has the pointiest face of all?

I will be 60 this summer but the thought wasn’t worrying me too much before last weekend; age ain’t nothing but a number and all that. Then…

Nashville’s songwriters break out of the back room and into the O2

“Always stay humble and kind” – a fine sentiment which began as advice from a 47-year-old mother to her children; four boys and one girl…

Every time I hear ‘John, I’m Only Dancing’ I still recall that thrill

In June 1971, between the initial success of Space Oddity and his transformation into Ziggy Stardust, I rediscovered Bowie…

Boy-girl duo Striking Matches blow the roof off The Borderline

Two sell-out shows at the Borderline club this week are a long way from superstardom but new country duo Striking Matches are halfway…

‘We have a new home for country music right here in London’

The key moment of the 2014 C2C Festival came at the end of Dierks Bentley’s set on Saturday night when, overwhelmed by waves of enthusiasm…

Jagger kept the same haircut: Steve Earle held on to his voice

Big, balding and bearded like an Old Testament prophet, Steve Earle looks nothing like the skinny black-haired youth who stared out of…

Lucinda Williams: raw and powerful, bruised and broken

As one of her final numbers thundered to a climax, Lucinda Williams turned round and gazed in admiration at the light show bathing her…

Short, uplifting show by Darren Hayman and four-piece band

At a loose end on Monday, I checked out the listings for The Vortex in Dalston. It’s my favourite small venue in London, but I’m not…

North Mississippi Allstars: Yes, it’s all about that bass

I’m not keen on bands without bass players. Specifically, I’m not keen on White Stripes-style duos who pretend that…