by Ed Biggs Ten years after the wider world took notice of them for the first time, TV On The Radio have long since cemented their place at the top table of indie acts, consistently releasing albums of outstanding quality and building up an impeccable reputation. With their own, distinctive vision for the ‘rock anthem’ that they’ve re-shaped and re-formulated many times over the years, most recently with 2014’s explicitly danceable
by Ed Biggs Hot Chip’s signature song, the maddeningly catchy chart smash ‘Over And Over’, very quickly became their passport to mainstream attention and remains one of the most distinctive songs of the noughties. However, less attention is paid to its parent album The Warning, which truly displayed the London quintet’s talents after something of a false start.
by Lauren James As The Knife‘s Silent Shout celebrates its 10 year anniversary, it’s necessary to look back on this landmark electronic album, whose aftershocks can still be felt a decade on. As the Swedish duo did most of the album promo wearing masks, the record represents the siblings trying on different identities and shape shifting to expose the grim realities of society. Before the strident politicism and prismatic beats of Shaking
by Ed Biggs The vast majority of albums need a sort of cooling-off period before being considered as a classic, but for Arctic Monkeys’ debut that status was conferred instantly, and with good justification. Not since Definitely Maybe had so many breathless superlatives been uttered about a British guitar debut album, and neither had such massive sales figures been delivered on the back of such hype. This was a band that
by Ed Biggs Ten years ago, a few people must really have believed that Sufjan Stevens was serious about his ambition to record a concept album about all 50 American states. His splendid 2003 album Michigan had set the ball rolling, and while he interrupted the sequence with 2004’s Seven Swans, it was followed with 2005’s Illinois, the album many consider to be his magnum opus. In fact, Stevens was so
by Ed Biggs It’s strange to think an album by a fictional band could have such a sizeable impact, but the 2005 album Demon Days by the animated group Gorillaz, the brainchild of Blur singer Damon Albarn and illustrator Jamie Hewlett, helped to shape the direction of pop music today. For all its undoubted creativity, the project’s self-titled 2001 debut ultimately felt a tad sterile, like a laboratory experiment with a
by Ed Biggs People tend to think of the mid noughties as a great time for British guitar music. At a cursory glance, this is correct. The breakthrough of The Libertines and Arctic Monkeys grabbed national headlines as their music crossed over to mainstream audiences and, at the time, it felt like we were living through some kind of golden age, with debut records from new and exciting bands coming
Although I was exposed to a vast galaxy of music at university, two bands dominated the soundtrack to my three years as an undergrad: Wakefield’s The Cribs and New York’s LCD Soundsystem. Musically speaking, they’re two very different groups, but both seemed to epitomise the spirit of invention that characterises all truly great alternative music and, crucially, both released at least two records while I was there. This meant I