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Culture Film

Spencer Review

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Even though she died a little over two decades ago, Princess Diana is one of the most mythologised figures in British history. Like Henry VIII, Elizabeth I, and Winston Churchill, Princess Diana is more of a symbol than a real person nowadays. Spencer attempts to grapple with the myth of Princess Diana, to […]

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Music

Rediscovering gems: the timeless charm of Sade

 During the past few months, I, like many, have been in search of musical solace: enter Sade. The captivating Nigerian-born British singer and her eponymous band have provided many moments of peace, quiet and clarity during the uncertainty and turbulence of a third lockdown. Combining soul, smooth jazz and sophisti-pop, Sade provide aurally exquisite sounds […]

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Music

Moses Boyd delivers exhilarating and poignant new party-jazz on ‘Dark Matter’

Five stars The 28-old producer-slash-drummer and avant-garde jazz pioneer Moses Boyd once described his mother as a ‘hipster’ before the word came into being; in an interview with Trench two years ago. He attributes this to his upbringing in a household which was often permeated with an eclectic array of sounds ranging from reggae and […]

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Music

Makaya McCraven reinvents Gil Scott-Heron’s sound on ‘We’re New Again’

Once a singer, songwriter and poet who stood out as a voice of protest and influence across genres spanning from jazz to hip hop, by the latter stages of his life Gil Scott-Heron was perhaps an artist whose literary genius had been overlooked. Despite a prolificacy in spoken word poetry throughout the 1970s and 80s […]

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Music

London’s radical new jazz scene lands itself in Glasgow

Since the virtuosic Californian saxophonist Kamasi Washington featured on Kendrick Lamar’s politically charged and era-defining jazz rap album To Pimp a Butterfly (2015) jazz has made a triumphant return to our contemporary musical and cultural conversation. Washington went on to release the magnificent and surpassingly elaborate The Epic and helped to introduce many people to […]

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Fringe Music

‘AstRONomical experience’: SymphRONica review

A showcase of ‘jazz for the playlist era’, SymphRONica aims to change preconceptions about jazz and bring it up to standard for modern ears. Made up of the classical pianist, electric guitarist and drummer, but also a string quartet and double bassist, this eight-piece band certainly does succeed in subverting the layman’s expectations of a […]

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albums Live Music

Aberdeen jazz quintet Hamlet impress with their debut, Act One

Hamlet are a relatively young band, formed in the spring of 2017. They started off life by playing contemporary works and jazz standards but have now moved on to create their own original album, Act One. It is a debut album that is daring and experimental, not afraid to mix in a variety of styles, […]

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Fringe Music

1895-1927 in New Orleans: The Red Hot Roots of Jazz

The line in front of the world-famous Jazz Bar began to form 45 minutes before the Tenement Jazz Band played the first tune of the evening. Nobody seemed bothered by the wait, only excited to hear the 6-month old band play. The speakeasy atmosphere of the venue was evident after stepping through the threshold and […]