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Wire, The

The Fall: Watching The City Hobgoblins: The Fall

Essay by Mark Sinker, Wire, The, August 1986

2005 note: In which I find my voice? In between all the "important rock does this" droning. ...

Anita Baker: The Deep Dark Soul

Interview by Richard Cook, Wire, The, September 1986

THE BAND PLAYS a slow, rough-textured groove, flesh laid on the dark bones of the bass. Three women set up a vocal counterpoint, rich with ...

Dave Brubeck: The Unsquare Dance

Retrospective by Richard Cook, Wire, The, November 1986

DAVE BRUBECK looked the part. The face that stared out from a Time magazine cover 30-odd years ago had the sober, shaven outline of a ...

Nelson George: The Death of Rhythm & Blues (Omnibus)

Review by Barney Hoskyns, Wire, The, 1987

NELSON GEORGE, self-described "B-Boy intellectual" and one of pop culture's few black writers of note, has written a book which (sort of) argues that the ...

Elvis Costello: El Hath No Fury: Elvis Costello

Interview by Barney Hoskyns, Wire, The, June 1991

"WHEN YOU GET OLD IT'S LIKE they go to the file for the opinions on you," said Elvis Costello last time he was on the ...

Lou Reed: Alchemical Engineering

Interview by Simon Reynolds, Wire, The, February 1992

Lou Reed is one of the few 60s figures who has kept up any serious exploration of rock's sounds and words. In this exclusive New ...

Public Enemy, Sun Ra: Loving The Alien In Advance Of The Landing

Essay by Mark Sinker, Wire, The, February 1992

"IN THE MEANTIME," he said, speaking relentlessly but mesmerically softly, as gurus will, "I finally went to Chicago. I determined not to be a musician ...

BBC Radiophonic Workshop, Daphne Oram, Delia Derbyshire: The BBC Radiophonic Workshop

Profile and Interview by Mark Sinker, Wire, The, February 1992

SIX COMPOSERS, too shy to make claims for themselves, go to make it up. But Brian Hodgson, who's worked with the BBC Radiophonic Workshop since ...

Laurie Anderson: Clarity’s Angel

Interview by Simon Reynolds, Wire, The, March 1992

First, Laurie Anderson chronicled the United States of America. What’s next for the leading performance-person of our day? ...

All Mix & No Master

Essay by David Toop, Wire, The, September 1992

"Whoever doesn't like what I did, 20 years from now they can go back and redo it."Teo Macero, discussing his method of recording Miles Davis ...

Elvis Costello: Can I Be Frank…?

Essay by Mark Sinker, Wire, The, September 1992

2005 note: The original manuscript began and ended with some kind of lyrical gibberish swansong for the song as a music-form (in the age of ...

Elvis Presley: Elvis - The 50s

Review by Mark Sinker, Wire, The, September 1992

PERHAPS THE most unexpected thing about RCA/BMG's Presley-project is how unexpected so much of it is. ...

Brian Eno: Taking Modern Culture By Strategy: Brian Eno

Essay by Mark Sinker, Wire, The, October 1992

2005 note: It’s not a sensible criticism of a conjuror that his craft does not involve actual real magical powers. Eno is fascinated by the ...

Bootsy Collins

Interview by Mark Sinker, Wire, The, October 1993

2005 note: Much of the cultural rhetoric surrounding funk is just teacher’s-pet attempts to plod-cram the music back into the squarest box available – I ...

Tim Buckley: T.B. Sheets: In Praise of Tim Buckley

Retrospective by Ian Penman, Wire, The, April 1994

TIM BUCKLEY was small - "this little man," as he said in one of his slow sly seducer's songs - he was small, and white, ...

Dub It Up: A Whistlestop Tour Through Reggae's Echo Chambers

Guide by David Toop, Wire, The, May 1994

A is for Alpha & Omega The odd couple of '90s roots and culture. Bassist Christine Woodbridge and melodica puffer John Sprosen conjure cultural spirits ...

John Cale: Music for the Last Day

Interview by Ian Penman, Wire, The, July 1994

JOHN CALE IS rock's international traveller, his work a trans-continental drift of moons and maps, seas and seachange, envoys and ennui. From his early (unfashionable) ...

Jon Hassell: Behind the Blue Screen: Jon Hassell

Profile and Interview by David Toop, Wire, The, August 1994

Jon Hassell's music with his group Bluescreen is an exotic domain of ritualised sex, strange tonalities, erotic transgressions and invisible connections. David Toop enters the ...

Pete Namlook: Peter Namlook

Interview by David Toop, Wire, The, September 1994

Pete Namlook is one of the more remarkable figures of 90s electronic music. Since December 1992, he has released over 150 albums on his own ...

Incredible Strange and Highly Exotic

Essay by David Toop, Wire, The, October 1994

The Incredibly Strange Music books are mondo archaeology for vinyl fetishists. They exhume a hidden world of plastic where exotic Easy Listening, modern primitives, suburban ...

Bill Laswell: An Interview with Bill Laswell

Interview by David Toop, Wire, The, December 1994

For almost two decades, Bill Laswell's music has traced a long, humid trail across continents, genres, moods, atmospheres and numerous collaborations. David Toop met him ...

Futurebeat: Vorschtsprung dürch Techno

Essay by Dave Rimmer, Wire, The, Spring 1994

"The only possible challenge to repetitive power takes the route of a breach in social repetition and the control of noisemaking. In more day-to-day political ...

Tricky: [the Phantoms of] TRICKNOLOGY [versus a Politics of Authenticity]

Essay by Ian Penman, Wire, The, March 1995

"Machine technology is a type of transformation." Martin Heidegger ...

Arthur Russell

Retrospective by David Toop, Wire, The, April 1995

This New York composer, who died in obscurity of AIDS in 1992, was a true visionary, traversing dub, disco and minimalism and anticipating the '90s ...

Butthole Surfers: In Praise Of Stupidity

Essay by Biba Kopf, Wire, The, May 1995

SOME PEOPLE ARE born stupid. Others have stupidity thrust upon them. The rest of us have to work at it. We spend a lifetime chipping ...

Scott Walker: Tilting at Wind

Interview by Richard Cook, Wire, The, May 1995

Scott Walker, perhaps the most enigmatic singer in recent times, has returned with his first recording since 1984. But is it a work of experimental ...

Frank Zappa: From Z to A and Back Again, or: QUANTITIES AND LEER

Comment by Ian Penman, Wire, The, July 1995

I CANNOT FOR the pop life of me see why anyone over the age of 17 would ever want to listen to Frank Zappa again, ...

Singing The Body Electric

Overview by Mark Sinker, Wire, The, September 1995

The story of the first electronic instruments is as twisted and circuitous as their primitive, labyrinthine wiring. Mark Sinker goes in search of these often ...

Amon Düül: Communing With Chaos: Amon Düül II

Retrospective and Interview by Edwin Pouncey, Wire, The, February 1996

WHEN THE GERMAN rock explosion (now recognised as Krautrock) first hit these shores in the early 70s, the temptation to label it as a thriving ...

The A-Z of Electro

Guide by David Toop, Wire, The, March 1996

In its original incarnation, Electro was black science fiction teleported to the dancefloors of New York, Miami and LA; a super-stoopid fusion of video games, ...

David Bowie, Frank Zappa, Lou Reed, Neil Young: Contract Breakers

Essay by Mark Sinker, Wire, The, June 1996

2005 note: Savage Pencil did a nice illustration for this: John and Yoko hilariously naked, among other excellent things. It also elicited an angry postcard ...

Robert Wyatt: Local Hero

Interview by Biba Kopf, Wire, The, September 1997

BK: You have just released Shleep, your first album for six years. Why has it taken so long? ...

Cabaret Voltaire, Psychic TV, Throbbing Gristle: William Burroughs: Ghost Of Chance

Essay by Biba Kopf, Wire, The, October 1997

"The Subliminal Kid moved in and took over bars cafes and juke boxes of the worlds cities and installed radio transmitters and microphones in each ...

Mark Hollis, Talk Talk: Return from Eden: Mark Hollis

Profile and Interview by Rob Young, Wire, The, January 1998

As the prime mover behind Talk Talk, Mark Hollis threw off the shackles of a pop existence to create the bleakest, yet most lyrical orchestral ...

Captain Beefheart: Grow Fins: Rarities (1965-1982)

Review by Byron Coley, Wire, The, May 1999

ALTHOUGH IT WAS their third released album, Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band arrived with 1969's sprawling Trout Mask Replica. The ability to appreciate its ...

Frank Zappa, Grateful Dead: Fables Of The Deconstruction

Essay by Edwin Pouncey, Wire, The, July 1999

ONE MAY evening in 1967 at San Francisco's Matrix club, Steppenwolf's bass player Nick St Nicholas got up on stage, plugged his guitar into an ...

Diamanda Galás: Ghent Gravensteen, Belgium

Live Review by Biba Kopf, Wire, The, November 1999

DEATH TRAILS Diamanda Galas with the tightlipped determination of a grizzled bounty hunter, growing increasingly vengeful the longer he is denied his prize. ...

Iggy Pop, The Stooges: Iggy Pop: Coming Through Slaughter

Interview by Edwin Pouncey, Wire, The, November 1999

Where lesser rock gods have become overweight and obsolete, Iggy Pop endures. In Miami, prompted by the bitter-sweet musings of his 13th album, he reflects ...

Faust: The Faust Tapes: Faust Epiphany

Retrospective by Don Watson, Wire, The, September 2000

ONE OF THE EFFECTS of the rabid reissue programs that accompanied the CD revolution was to offer shrinkwrapped package tours into your teenage bedrom. Music, ...

Jah Wobble & Evan Parker: Passage To Hades (30 HERTZ)

Review by David Toop, Wire, The, February 2001

PERHAPS THIS IS a disingenuous flash of hindsight on my part, but I'm convinced that when I heard Public Image Limited's first album, back in ...

Captain Beefheart & The Magic Band: Dust Sucker (Milksafe)

Review by Edwin Pouncey, Wire, The, May 2002

THE FULL STORY of Captain Beefheart's ill-fated Bat Chain Puller – potentially his greatest musical statement after Trout Mask Replica – has already been admirably ...

Shirley Collins: Spirit Of Eden: Shirley Collins

Retrospective and Interview by Mike Barnes, Wire, The, May 2002

"The main body of [folk music] is just based on myth and the Bible and plague and famine and all kinds of things like that ...

Vincent Gallo: Recordings Of Music For Films (Warp)

Review by Ian Penman, Wire, The, May 2002

NOTE THAT STRICTLY utile title. Here we find not vanity project Muzak for 'imaginary' films, projected by some vain musclehead Hollyweird jerk-off with more friends ...

Kevin Ayers: Invisible Jukebox

Interview by Mike Barnes, Wire, The, December 2002

KEVIN AYERS was one of many curious teenagers who gravitated towards Wellington House at Lydden, near Canterbury, in the early '60s. The house was owned ...

Ron Geesin

Profile and Interview by Mike Barnes, Wire, The, September 2003

"Ron Geesin, composer for all media, live performer and one-man record company, works from his own studio both writing for musicians and working with complex ...

Can, Damo Suzuki: Damo Suzuki: The Accidental Anarchist

Interview by Mike Barnes, Wire, The, July 2004

Damo Suzuki is the legendary vocalist with German group Can, but he has been perfecting his unique mode of 'instant composition' all his life. Having ...

Wilco: Free the Spirit: Wilco

Interview by Edwin Pouncey, Wire, The, August 2004

"IF I PLAYED you all the Wilco songs in chronological order on an acoustic guitar, they probably wouldn't sound that different," declares Wilco leader Jeff ...

Bonnie Prince Billy, Matt Sweeney: Matt Sweeney & Bonnie "Prince" Billy: Superwolf

Review by Mike Barnes, Wire, The, February 2005

IT'S STILL DIFFICULT for me to listen to the music of Will Oldham – aka Bonnie "Prince" Billy – without thinking back to when I ...

Buck 65: Secret House Against the World

Review by Mike Barnes, Wire, The, August 2005

Though some deplore Buck 65's drift away from Anticon hiphop, Mike Barnes welcomes his blended but more mature songwriting direction. ...

This Heat and Cold Storage: Once upon a time in Brixton

Retrospective by Mike Barnes, Wire, The, August 2005

"A former meat storage room that became This Heat's rehearsal room then an 8-track studio then a 16-track studio then a 24-track studio then a ...

Bert Jansch: Invisible Jukebox

Interview by Mike Barnes, Wire, The, February 2007

Complete draft of the feature originally published in The Wire 276, Feb 2007 ...

Peter Hammill

Retrospective and Interview by Mike Barnes, Wire, The, March 2007

"I DIDN'T HAVE white tunnels, but I did have the feeling that if I got too tired, which at a certain point might have been ...

Big Black, Butthole Surfers, Sonic Youth: Sonic Youth And the Blast First Axis

Essay by David Stubbs, Wire, The, February 2009

AS FAR AS many people were concerned in the 80s, in the UK in particular, rock was a discredited medium. ...

David Bedford: Albion's Astronaut

Interview by Mike Barnes, Wire, The, March 2011

Trained by the European avant garde, British composer David Bedford helped launch Mike Oldfield and Kevin Ayers's pastoral rock into orbit with his cosmically aligned ...

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