An unrelated Popular thread prompted some reflections on my favourite Beck album (although judging by the stream of Morning Phase, it could have a challenger).

Read More · 21 February 2014 · Music

Your disco needs you too: more 1997 UK number ones at Popular.

Read More · 21 February 2014 · Music

Popular enters 1997 in a blur of good-to-great tracks.

Read More · 21 February 2014 · Music

Life and Death

Man still remembers teacher who made him fall in love with writing.

What a grocery store looks like without honeybees.

Peter Freuchen, Arctic explorer. Call that a knife?

The pleasant morning of an evil day.

Majorité opprimée (via Mefi).

Mary Beard on the Miss Triggs question (Mefi).

On authenticity, appropriation and eating (Mefi).

On not going home (Mefi).

Oceanic force and mystery (Mefi).

Rolling Stone’s 500 worst reviews of all time (Mefi). Essential reading for any past subscribers who bought their share of “four-star” turkeys on their say-so.

Film Crit Hulk on THE LEGO MOVIE. Saw it with W. the other day; recommended for any Lego kids and parents.

The Things. For fans of the singular John Carpenter.

20 February 2014 · Weblog

1996 was an unexpectedly strong year for UK number ones, with thirteen votes from me in Popular’s end-of-year poll of songs worth six or more out of ten. Only a few were songs I was actually listening to then and would listen to much today; what I really loved that year were Suede’s Coming Up and Ash’s 1977, still my favourite albums by each band. But one or two became favourites not long afterwards...

Read More · 12 February 2014 · Music

A second instalment of my Popular comments on late 1996, indirectly featuring one of my favourite bands of a few years later, and directly featuring one of my favourite bands of the decade after that.

Read More · 12 February 2014 · Music

Tom Ewing has been on a roll at Popular since Christmas, moving quickly through the second half of 1996 and on into 1997. Here’s a first instalment of my comments on the period in question.

Read More · 12 February 2014 · Music

January 2014