In no particular order, 10 of my favourites from 2015 plus a cheeky two that I missed in 2014. The Color Waves ‘Chirology’ Adult Mom ‘Survival’ The Joy Formidable ‘Y Garreg Ateb’ San Fermin ‘Jackrabbit’ Lanterns on the Lake ‘Faultlines’ Paper Aeroplanes ‘Sail’ Courtney Barnett ‘Nobody Really Cares if You Don’t Go to the Party’ … More Top 10 Songs 2015
Easily one of the strangest books I’ve ever read, this is the second volume of memoirs by the Cornish poet Jack Clemo. I’d read both his novels years ago and some of his verse, but this was new to me. So much is strange about it: the way he reviews his own poetry, his unique brand … More Jack Clemo, ‘The Marriage of a Rebel’
This is my photo of the finished artwork by Adam Dant from the UK General Election of 2016, ‘the Government Stable’ which is on display in Portcullis House in Westminster. You can read more about it and see explanations of what all of it means on Parliament’s website here and you can see all his sketches from … More Adam Dant, Election Artist 2015
After last week seeing Patti Smith in Robert Mapplethorpe’s photographs from the ‘Horses’ session it was quite an experience to see her perform that album at the amazing Roundhouse in Camden in London this weekend. It was pretty much goosebumps all the way from the moment she began reading the sleeve notes from a 12″ copy of … More Patti Smith at the Roundhouse, London
These splendid splashes of colour are on display in the office-block part of the National Assembly for Wales and they deserve being shared more widely. They’re by Carmen Mills who’s based in Aberystwyth but that’s all I know about her. Here’s the link to her blog. And here are some more of her abstracts which are … More Carmen Mills paintings, National Assembly for Wales
While covering a conference at Aberystwyth Arts centre there’s usually a chance to have a quick look at whatever exhibitions are currently there. This weekend that meant seeing the excellent photographs of Robert Mapplethorpe. It’s part of the Tate’s Artist Rooms on Tour project which you can find out about here. It’s on at Aberystwyth till … More Robert Mapplethorpe exhibition, Aberystwyth
Virginia Woolf’s passport. A postcard from the Literary Passports set from Galley Beggar Press.
This is just gorgeous. Twangy guitar and a haunting melody – just my cup of tea and perfect for an autumnal Sunday night. It’s by the Color Waves, which is the new band of Glasgow-based Alison Eales who’s also a member of the excellent Butcher Boy amongst all the other things that she does. She’s also … More The Color Waves, ‘Chirology’
One of many by Paul Cox for this volume.
Far from another exercise in eighties nostalgia, this book is a fascinating closer examination of a couple of years that apparently changed Britain forever. It’s fair to say that Beckett is uncertain about the value of this change although he’s open-minded enough to acknowledge the many benefits it brought as well as recognising the human … More Andy Beckett, ‘Promised You a Miracle’