Rock's Backpages Library Rock's Backpages
Rock's Backpages

Adam Sweeting

Adam Sweeting
Once upon a time, Adam Sweeting was the features editor of Melody Maker, and wrote for Q in its early days. Currently, he writes regularly for The Guardian and Uncut magazine, and also contributes to The Times Saturday magazine, the Sunday Times, the Daily Telegraph and the Independent on Sunday. He is a partner in the TV production company VTVC, who made the series Mr Rock'n'Roll (about rock managers) for Channel 4. VTVC is currently working on a major documentary about Luciano Pavarotti for BBC2.

List of articles in the library by artist

Ryan Adams: Shepherd's Bush Empire, London

Live Review by Adam Sweeting, Uncut, January 2002

I SAW rock'n'roll's future and its name is… all right, calm down everybody. ...

A Flock of Seagulls: A Flock Of Seagulls: Beaks On Broadway

Report and Interview by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, June 1982

"AND THAT was a Flock with 'Space Age Love Song' here on K-ROQ Los Angeles. For those of you who don't know yet, that's A ...

Lily Allen: Somerset House, London ***

Live Review by Adam Sweeting, Daily Telegraph, July 2009

The queen of MySpace and Twitter struggles to make herself heard in the real world. ...

Asia: Asia (Geffen)

Review by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, April 1982

DESIGNED BY computer, hand-built by robots...Completely calculated, thoroughly contemptible, Asia is very bit as hollow, shallow and nasty as anyone had a right to expect. ...

The Bangles

Report and Interview by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, March 1985

IF IT'S TUESDAY, this must be Paris. How about Europe so far, girls? ...

The Bay City Rollers: Tam Paton

Obituary by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, April 2009

Bay City Rollers manager who was mired in scandal ...

George Benson: "If It Ain't Broke, Don't Fix It"

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Q, February 1987

KEN FRITZ, the slim, obsessively neat half of George Benson's management team Fritz & Turner, was worried that he may have caught a chill while ...

Buffalo Springfield, Crazy Horse, Crosby Stills Nash & Young, Neil Young: Shakey: Neil Young's biography by Jimmy McDonough

Book Review by Adam Sweeting, Uncut, September 2002

MOST ROCK stars realise they need to plug the new album and stir up column inches when concert tickets go on sale, but eventually it ...

Kate Bush: Bushwacked by Kate

Profile and Interview by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, October 1989

THE WOMAN pouring tea in a hotel near EMI records has a wide, warm smile and speaks with such endearing openness that you wonder if ...

Kate Bush: Return of the Recluse

Profile and Interview by Adam Sweeting, Independent on Sunday, October 2005

PLENTY HAS HAPPENED in the twelve years since Kate Bush last released an album. Tory sleaze has morphed into New Labour; mobile phones and iPods ...

Cabaret Voltaire

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, June 1982

"THERE'S 70 million people on earth." "Where are they hiding?" ...

Gene Clark: Flight Fantastic

Retrospective by Adam Sweeting, Uncut, July 2001

GENE CLARK'S NO OTHER IS ONE OF THE GREAT LOST ALBUMS. ...

Elvis Costello & The Attractions: Ten Bloody Marys & Ten How's Your Fathers (Imp)

Review by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, 1980

COSTELLO BUFFS will undoubtedly be familiar with this generously-stuffed collection of His Master's Voices from its previous existence on cassette. On the other hand, they ...

Elvis Costello And The Attractions: Punch The Clock (F Beat)

Review by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, September 1983

PHEW, for a moment there I thought the penny wasn't going to drop in time. Luckily, after a further batch of circumnavigations of the turntable, ...

Elvis Costello: A Dream Comes True

Report and Interview by Adam Sweeting, Gramophone, January 2004

A ballet from pop legend Elvis Costello based on Shakespeare? How did the musical changeling meet the challenge, asks Adam Sweeting ...

The Cramps: Lux Interior

Obituary by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, February 2009

Co-founder of the Cramps, exponents of trash culture and 'psychobilly' music ...

Crosby Stills Nash & Young: "Deja Vu Again"

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, October 1999

THERE'S NO MISTAKING the portly middle-aged man with the walrus moustache beached on a sofa at the Dorchester hotel, plucking the chords of Neil Young's ...

The Cure

Profile and Interview by Adam Sweeting, Spin, July 1987

Robert Smith grew up like any other alienated boy from the suburbs. Then he grew down and became one of pop music's great eccentrics. ...

Dead Or Alive: Queen Bitch

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, April 1984

Suddenly, yesterday's men Dead Or Alive are pop Stars. Here, flamboyant PETE BURNS tells Adam Sweeting about fame and dressing up. ...

Howard Devoto, Pete Shelley: Shelley-Devoto: The Odd Couple

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Uncut, April 2002

YOU HAVE BEEN parachuted into the middle of 1976. Text messaging, Hear'Say and Osama Bin Laden belong to an unknowable future, but The Sex Pistols ...

Bo Diddley

Obituary by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, June 2008

American pioneer of rock'n'roll who influenced the Beatles and the Rolling Stones ...

The Dixie Chicks: Dixie Chicks: How The Chicks Survived Their Scrap With Bush

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Daily Telegraph, June 2006

Adam Sweeting assesses how the Dixie Chicks have weathered a political storm ...

Thomas Dolby: The Flat Earth (Parlophone)

Review by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, February 1984

ANYBODY WHO'D put Magnus Pyke in one of their videos has to be a gimmick merchant, right? Though Thomas Dolby scored a hit in all ...

Thomas Dolby: Hyperaction

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, March 1984

Adam Sweeting gets all smoochy with Eighties Renaissance Man THOMAS DOLBY. ...

Ian Dury: Triffic!

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Q, February 1987

MADNESS ALWAYS called him Uncle Ian, and there's still that avuncular earthiness about Ian Dury. "They always say, we are entertainers," he notes, "and I'll ...

Steve Earle: Highway Blues

Retrospective by Adam Sweeting, Uncut, April 2002

HOW STEVE EARLE'S GUITAR TOWN BROUGHT A NEW ATTITUDE TO NASHVILLE. ...

Earth Wind and Fire: Royal Albert Hall, London

Live Review by Adam Sweeting, Sunday Telegraph, October 2013

Funk Pop's most durable act are still as interested in theatrics as music ...

Echo & The Bunnymen: Echo and the Bunnymen: Crystal Days (1979-1999)**** (Warner Strategic Marketing)

Review by Adam Sweeting, Uncut, August 2001

MAC LADS' four-CD retrospective ...

Eurythmics: Be Yourself Tonight (RCA)

Review by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, May 1985

AMONG their assimilations, borrowings and treatments, Eurythmics remain outsiders. "I'm a looker, a viewer of things," said Annie Lennox. Their Sweet Dreams album nailed the ...

Eurythmics: The Ministry Of Truth

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, May 1985

AMONG THE CRASH of crockery and the hubbub of tea-slurping customers, Dave Stewart and Annie Lennox sit unobtrusively at a table in the Waldorf Hotel. ...

Dave Stewart, Eurythmics: The Man Most Likely To: Dave Stewart

Profile and Interview by Adam Sweeting, Q, February 1987

THE MATCHING PAIR of black and white Mercedes limousines nose, cautiously down the narrow street, unearthly craft looking for a landing space in the Milan ...

Fehlfarben: Before The Deluge

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, July 1982

UNDER THE nuclear shadow, something stirs. Looking west, it decides to reject the old men's fear and guilt. If the sands of time are turning ...

Rory Gallagher: Gallagher: The Rory Details

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Beat Instrumental, March 1979

I LOST COUNT of the number of times men in check shirts spilt beer down me. Elderly blues and rock and roll music thundered over ...

Gang of Four: Songs Of The Free (EMI)

Review by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, May 1982

AND SO the most highly-evolved piss artists in "rock" came to release their third LP. ...

Macy Gray: Shepherds Bush Empire, London ***

Live Review by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, May 2003

HER RECORD COMPANY had spent the day warning everybody that she would be on stage at 9pm, not 9.15pm as advertised, but in the end ...

Jason & The Scorchers: Jason and the Scorchers: Fervor

Review by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, July 1984

WITH MUCH contemporary sound becoming more than a tad anaemic (they know who they are), we must turn our eyes to the West for a ...

The Jesus & Mary Chain: Ah, Showbusiness...

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Q, October 1987

...the roar of the crowd, the smell of the greasepaint, the reverberating thud of boot through amplifer. Live sets lasting nine whole minutes. A riot ...

Norah Jones at Shepherd's Bush Empire, London

Live Review by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, October 2002

At 23, Norah Jones is both old beyond her years and curiously insecure in front of an audience, even such a plainly partisan one as ...

B.B. King: Hammersmith Odeon, London

Live Review by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, April 1980

A SLY old dog who knows all the tricks, B. B. King is capable of making you realise that the blues is rather more than ...

Alison Krauss and Union Station: Lonely Runs Both Ways

Review by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, November 2004

THIS IS KRAUSS'S first studio album for three years, though in the meantime she's delivered a bestselling live album, won three Grammy awards, and made ...

Arthur Lee, Love: Arthur Lee 1945-2006

Obituary by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, August 2006

Flower-power myth maker who captured the dark side of the summer of love ...

Annie Lennox: The Right Stuff: Annie Lennox on Singers

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Q, February 1987

I NEVER HAD enough money to have a record player, so I never got into the habit ol buying records, and so my only real ...

Little Feat: Snakes On Everything

Retrospective by Adam Sweeting, Uncut, December 2001

FOR A FEW moments, it sounded just like old times. Little Feat were rolling unhurriedly through 'Day Or Night', embellishing it with their traditional lopsided ...

Manassas: The Feast Of Stephen

Retrospective by Adam Sweeting, Uncut, February 2002

ADAM SWEETING ON MANASSAS, STEPHEN STILLS' GROUNDBREAKING 1972 MIX OF COUNTRY AND ROCK ...

Buddy Miles 1947-2008

Obituary by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, February 2008

Rock drummer who graced the stage with Hendrix in his heyday ...

Ministry: Ministry of Offence

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, July 1982

THE AIRPORT at Minneapolis is surprisingly big, considering the town itself is hidden away up towards Canada in the big blank heart of the mid-West. ...

Liza Minnelli: "Each song is a movie to me"

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Daily Telegraph, January 2013

Ahead of her show at the Royal Festival Hall, Liza Minnelli takes a break from rehearsals in New York to serenade Adam Sweeting. ...

Sugar Minott

Obituary by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, July 2010

Prolific Jamaican musician who was a pioneer of dancehall reggae ...

Joni Mitchell: Dog Eat Dog

Review and Interview by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, January 1986

THEY'VE ALL all been coming out of the woodwork this past year, the artists who'd never deign to speak to anyone - ole Neil, Dylan ...

Joni Mitchell: Joni Rides Home

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Vox, April 1991

JONI MITCHELL MAY HAVE CUT HER MUSICAL TEETH DURING THE ERA OF LOVE AND PEACE BUT SHE TAKES NONE TOO KINDLY TO COMPARISONS WITH TODAY'S ...

Mothmen: One Black Dot

Review by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, April 1982

THERE'S SOMETHING invisible about the Mothmen. Oh yes, they've included a picture of themselves here and their names are all written down for inspection...but the ...

Motorhead

Profile and Interview by Adam Sweeting, Trouser Press, May 1981

"NOISE IS A big part of Motorhead mania" says the stark black lettering inside one of the band's tour brochures. Immediately below it is a ...

New Order: Shaming The Nation

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, January 1986

With last year's album Low-life, NEW ORDER finally laid the ghost of Joy Division and emerged as one of this nation's saving graces with a ...

Robert Palmer On Singers

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Q, December 1986

THESE ARE MY favourite 10, and not in any particular order. For instance, I do think Billie Holiday was better than Peter Cox, the singer ...

Pere Ubu: The Art Of Pere Ubu

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, 1981

IT'S AN IRONIC twist of fate that Pere Ubu's latest visit to the UK should be prefaced by Rough Trade's reissue of the band's debut ...

Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers: Tom Petty

Report and Interview by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, June 1981

BENMONT TENCH remembers the day well. "It was April Fool's Day 1974 when we drove to LA" he recalls. At the time, keyboardsman Tench, guitarist ...

Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers: Tom Petty: Petty Larceny

Profile and Interview by Adam Sweeting, Vox, September 1991

HEIR TO DYLAN OR BEL AIR AIRHEAD? SOMETIME WILBURY TOM PETTY IS 40 WITH KIDS, AND EVEN THOUGH HIS NEW ALBUM WITH THE HEARTBREAKERS IS ...

Pink Floyd: Richard Wright

Obituary by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, September 2008

Keyboard player and founder member of Pink Floyd ...

The Redskins: Keeping On And On

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, February 1984

Adam Sweeting weathers a storm of political invective from THE REDSKINS ...

Keith Richards, The Rolling Stones: Keith Richards

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Uncut, December 2002

ON DECEMBER 18 next year, he'll celebrate, simultaneously, his 60th birthday and 20 years of marriage to Patti Hansen. He's a father of four, and ...

Lionel Richie: Dancing On the Ceiling

Review by Adam Sweeting, Q, October 1986

IT IS SAID THAT Lionel Richie's previous solo album, Can't Slow Down, sold an unthinkable 15 million copies, the kind of statistic that can cause ...

Simple Minds: The Laird

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Q, August 1987

HE HAS HEARD the big music, and he'll never be the same. "At the end of the day we are a hell of a noise," ...

Sonic Youth: Here Come The Noise Terrorists: Sonic Youth

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, July 1992

THUNDEROUS mantra-grooves and jagged fanfares of atonal brass boom across the parched grass of New York's Central Park, though it could equally well be Monterey ...

Spear Of Destiny: Spear of Destiny: Spear & Loathing

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, January 1984

SPEAR OF DESTINY'S KIRK BRANDON bares his soul to Adam Sweeting ...

Bruce Springsteen

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Uncut, September 2002

IF ALL YOU'VE ever seen of New Jersey is Newark airport or the bits they show you in the opening sequence of The Sopranos, you ...

Bruce Springsteen: Talking To The Boss

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Vox, September 1992

FOLKLORE TELLS us there was a time, about 25 years ago, when meeting the stars was a simple matter. You just had to hang out ...

Squeeze: Sweets From A Stranger (A&M)

Review by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, May 1982

CELEBRATED FOR their willingness to look the slings and arrows straight in the eye, Squeeze return with more observations and scars from the battle zone. ...

The Style Council, Wham!: Wham! Style Council: Miners' Benefit, Royal Festival Hall, London

Live Review by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, September 1984

Pit-Head Ballet ...

Chip Taylor: Lock 17, London ****

Live Review by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, July 2005

EVEN BEFORE he met Carrie Rodriguez, Chip Taylor's life had the authentic ring of fiction about it. ...

Television: Queen Elizabeth Hall, London

Live Review by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, June 2002

IT WAS SOMETHING of a coup to recruit Television for David Bowie's Meltdown festival. The glacial new-wavers made rock history with their 1977 debut album, ...

U2: At The Homecoming: U2’s Unforgettable Fire

Review by Adam Sweeting, Melody Maker, 1985

THIS HAS BEEN a long time coming, and there have been signs of strain. War, U2's last album of new material, was released more than ...

U2: Friars, Aylesbury

Live Review by Adam Sweeting, Sounds, June 1981

THEY'D JUST FLOWN IN from the States, seen Springsteen the previous night, and gave Aylesbury a taste of what it's like to be totally wired ...

Townes Van Zandt: Keeping Quiet For The Sake Of A Song: Townes Van Zandt 1944-1997

Obituary by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, January 1997

OTHER MUSICIANS revered Texan song writer Townes Van Zandt who has died of a heart attack aged 52, but he made real efforts, helped by ...

Martha Wainwright: "I like old guys cos they like me!"

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Telegraph Magazine, May 2008

Singer Martha Wainwright tells Adam Sweeting about the soap opera of her family life ...

Tom Waits: A Mellower Prince Of Melancholy

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, September 1992

HE MIGHT STILL dress as though he staggers around sniffing under dustbin lids, but now the self styled Oddball Kid refuses to play his old ...

Gillian Welch and David Rawlings: Shepherds Bush Empire, London

Live Review by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, August 2004

"WE LOVE PLAYING HERE," Gillian Welch told us more than once, and since she and her musical soulmate David Rawlings were on for more than ...

XTC: A Coat Of Many Cupboards (Virgin) ****

Review by Adam Sweeting, Uncut, April 2002

FOUR-CD box set offers alternative history of quintessentially English pop group. ...

Neil Young: "Will I be deported?"

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, May 2003

IT IS DIFFICULT to find supportive things to say about George Bush unless your construction company is rebuilding Iraq, but it would be a droll ...

Neil Young: Legend Of A Loner (part 1)

Interview by Adam Sweeting, New Musical Express, September 1985

NEIL YOUNG is one of rock's most enduring heroes. From Buffalo Springfield to Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young to his own brilliant, if erratic, solo ...

Neil Young: Legend Of A Loner (part 2)

Interview by Adam Sweeting, New Musical Express, September 1985

He's back! In part two of Adam Sweeting's definitive epic, NEIL YOUNG explains the gentle art of growing old gracefully. ...

Neil Young: Old Ways Diehard

Profile and Interview by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, September 1985

The old Crosby, Stills and Nash hippie has taken on a new redneck colouration with firm roots in country music. Adam Sweeting looks back from ...

Zwan: Billy Corgan

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, February 2003

BILLY CORGAN has been dreaming of Christina Aguilera, pop's best undressed woman. She was staying at the same London hotel as Corgan's new band, Zwan, ...

List of genre pieces

Ahmet Ertegun

Obituary by Adam Sweeting, Richard Williams, Guardian, The, December 2006

A mogul who nurtured the careers of stars such as Ray Charles, Led Zeppelin, Aretha Franklin and Dusty Springfield ...

Alan Livingston Obituary

Obituary by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, March 2009

Alan Wendell Livingston, businessman, born 15 October 1917; died 13 March 2009 ...

Stiff Records

Report by Adam Sweeting, Q, October 1986

THE CONNAUGHT ROOMS in London, WC2, are used to Lord Mayors, masonic gatherings and businessmen full of brandy, but on a grey August Monday the ...

back to LIBRARY

COPYRIGHT NOTICE