Very little of the Americana music that I thrive on has been released this year… One very different 2015 album that I’ve played a lot is Ibeyi (thanks Jane Taylor). These French-Cuban twin sisters sings in English and Yoruba and, to quote my friend Lewis, the result is: ‘Superb. Wins my vote for the chilled out – upbeat mood maker’. The other stand-out 2015 album, for me, was Mbongwana Star’s ‘From Kinshasa’ (thanks Steve Pullinger) a transcendent combination of African rhythms with electronica. Lewis again: ‘joyous, energetic and perfect! I’m looking forward to hearing Julia Holter’s new release ‘Have You In My Wilderness’. Memorable exhibition of the year was the vast Conflict Time Photography, especially moving was ’99 Years Later’ which photographed places where war-time events had occurred, for instance a spot where conscientious objectors had been shot by firing squad: absence was so tangible and powerful in these images… There was also the Mapping the City, a thought-provoking collection of innovative work by graffiti artists. And in the gallery next door the wonderful Chris Stein/Negative: Me, Blondie, and The Advent of Punk. At the ‘Fracking and the Imagination’ conference that I co-convened in April, Ant Dickinson’s sound apology to Alan Turin was extraordinary and moving
I am he as you are he as you are me, and we are all together
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A story, essay, lyric or rhyme with no reason almost every day...