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iTunes Festival / September 2014

 
By on Wednesday, 23rd July 2014 at 8:00 am
 

Kasabian (pictured above), Calvin Harris, Sam Smith and Pharrell Williams are amongst the first wave of artists announced for the 2014 iTunes Festival.

Taking place at London’s Roundhouse throughout the duration of September, the line-up also includes the likes of David Guetta, young Australians 5 Seconds of Summer, Kylie Minogue and American hitmakers Maroon 5.

Tickets for each of the gigs are free to competition winners and the shows will be live streamed via iTunes or on Apple TV.

Speaking about the festival, Kasabian said, “We’re very proud to be in this year’s iTunes Festival line-up, and we are excited to be playing alongside so many great artists. We have had a huge year so far. Expect some surprises!”

Robert Plant, who headlines the festival on Monday the 8th of September, added, “We’ve been roaring around the world this summer from Morocco to the Arctic Circle. The band is on fire. It’s now time to shake it on down in NW1.”

The iTunes Festival 2014 line-up so far is as follows:

Tuesday 2nd September 2014 – Beck
Wednesday 3rd September 2014 – David Guetta
Thursday 4th September 2014 – 5 Seconds of Summer
Friday 5th September 2014 – Kasabian
Sunday 7th September 2014 – Calvin Harris and Kiesza
Monday 8th September 2014 – Robert Plant
Tuesday 9th September – Sam Smith
Wednesday 10th September 2014 – Pharrell Williams and Jungle
Thursday 11th September 2014 – Maroon 5
Tuesday 16th September 2014 – Blondie and Chrissie Hynde
Saturday 27th September 2014 – Kylie Minogue

Further artists are expected to be announced in the coming weeks. In its 7-year history, the iTunes Festival has played host to a vast array of big names, including Oasis, Lady Gaga and Arctic Monkeys.

The festival made its debut in the US earlier this year with a five day run at the Moody Theatre in Austin, Texas during SXSW 2014. Coldplay, Kendrick Lamar and Pitbull were amongst the artists on the line-up.

For further information about the iTunes Festival including ticket applications, visit the official Web site.

 

Album Review: Robert Plant – Band of Joy

 
By on Thursday, 2nd September 2010 at 12:00 pm
 

Not so long back it seemed as though Robert Plant was a spent force creatively. While his reunion with Jimmy Page threw up some decent material, you got the impression that both artists were doing little more than treading water.

Then Plant decided to embark on his own personal, study of the history of American music, inviting collaborators Alison Krauss and T-Bone Burnett to join him on the ‘Raising Sand’ album. That collection proved to be a revelation, with the team selecting and re-working songs from a surprising array of artists, from the The Everly Brothers to Tom Waits, and being awarded the Grammy for Album of the Year. When the time came to record the follow up though, they found that the chemistry was no longer there. Rather than make do and try to force out an album for the sake of it, the decision was made to call it a day and quit while they were ahead. This left Robert with the task of trying to assemble a new line up to continue his project. Drafting in Nashville stalwart Buddy Miller to produce and add guitar, and Patti Griffin as a vocal foil, he set about crafting a somewhat darker, more muscular sequel to ‘Raising Sand’.

One of the more striking things about Plant’s voice these days is the way he exercises restraint when he might previously have let rip. There are times here where he lowers his voice to a whisper and the album is all the more compelling for it. Opening with an upbeat cover of Los Lobos’ ‘Angel Dance’ (video below), the album jumps between styles, tempos and moods, taking in bluegrass, doo-wop, honky tonk and the haunting gothic Americana of ‘Silver Rider’ and ‘Monkey’, two Low covers and two of the standout songs in this collection. It’s interesting to note that Plant named the album after the pre-Zeppelin band he played in with John Bonham, whether he sees this as a rebirth of sorts is unclear but he certainly sounds rejuvenated here and it’s not surprising that he turned down the offer of a (potentially very lucrative) Led Zeppelin reunion tour in order to continue mining the rich vein of form that he’s found.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-LREVZSIcL8[/youtube]

While not every song here hits the spot, ‘You Can’t Buy My Love’ and ‘Falling In Love Again’ in particular, sound out of place, the high points, such as the previously mentioned Low covers and ‘Satan, Your Kingdom Must Come Down’, a traditional song previously performed by Willie Nelson and Uncle Tupelo, make up for these dips. Plant’s voice throughout is engaging and he’s backed here by some strong performances from his band, not least multi-instrumentalist Darrell Scott, who have come together to make an album that both builds on what went before and creates anticipation over what might come next. You can watch the man speak about the ‘Band of Joy’ album in the interview video below.

7/10

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dbdp-TkO__A[/youtube]

‘Band of Joy’ will be released 13 September 2010 on Decca.

 

Robert Plant / September and October 2010 UK Tour

 
By on Wednesday, 7th July 2010 at 8:30 am
 

The rather legendary Robert Plant has announced a string of tour dates to co-incide with new album ‘Band Of Joy’ on September 13th.

You can catch the Led Zeppelin front man at:

Thursday 2nd September 2010 – London Forum
Tuesday 26th October 2010 – Cardiff St David’s Hall
Wednesday 27th October 2010 – Birmingham Symphony Hall
Sunday 31st October 2010 – Manchester Palace Theatre

 
 
 

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