As I write, I’m listening to the second disc of “In Rainbows” for, I think, the third time. First impressions, then. The eight tracks shouldn’t be considered as offcuts, as inferior cousins of the songs that made it onto the first set; in fact, I’ve a hunch that some Radiohead fans might actually prefer some of the songs here.


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News reaches me from my house that the Radiohead discbox has turned up, with another CD of new songs to go with the ones we already know from the "In Rainbows" download. I'll try and get my head round those in time to blog tomorrow.


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Feeling a bit queasy right now, after watching five minutes of Jean Michel Jarre's new DVD while wearing 3D glasses. I can't vouch for the whole disc of "Oxygene", but Jarre seems to eschew the youthful sort of 3D stunts and go instead for shots of him and his mates playing some lovely old synths. Quite strange, not least because it seems to have had the unusual effect of making me both bored and dizzy at the same time.


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So I arrived at work this morning with the plan to write about the pretty fine new Wu-Tang Clan album. I’ve been momentarily distracted, though, by the discovery that Def Jam are streaming the entire new Ghostface Killah album on their website.


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I guess it’s still fairly early in the morning, but I’m struggling right now to think of many players around at the moment who are as slippery and compelling as Will Oldham. He’s had, by his standards, a relatively quiet year. But the other day, a new mini-album turned up unexpectedly, a few days after it had actually arrived in the shops. Like a big American urban star or Radiohead, clearly Oldham has abandoned the niceties of advance releases for hacks. Which is fair enough, if a bit frustrating.


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There is a man in a flat cap standing in the middle of the stage, looking pensively at some large twigs while his bandmates work up ten minutes of bleary musique concrete. Eventually he picks up a bass and the six of them lumber into a passage of magisterial, martial psych. It mutates into waterlogged beatnik blues, then a kind of splenetic krautpunk. One of the guitarists, incidentally, now has a cardboard box on his head. There’s a mannequin’s head on top of the box. After a while, he conscientiously ties a scarf round its neck.


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Rare candour from a musician in a press release today. This is Stephin Merritt talking about the Magnetic Fields album, “Distortion”. The goal, he says, was “to sound more like Jesus And Mary Chain than Jesus And Mary Chain.”


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Some thought-provoking responses to my No Music Day blog yesterday; scroll down to the bottom of my waffle and have a look. I particularly like Nigel's idea of Total Music Day, where we concentrate utterly on records without any distractions. Though realistically - as he acknowledges - that'd be as tough to pull off as No Music Day.


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I had a big plan this morning to try and observe Bill Drummond's No Music Day for as long as we could stick it out. But I got here a bit late and Rufus Wainwright doing his Judy Garland turn was already on the stereo.


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Quite a curious, though vaguely welcome, phenomenon in London at the moment, where a few American garage and artpunk bands appear to have been adopted by the sort of fashion scene who normally favour pseudo-transgressive electro over gnarly old rock'n'roll. The belated deification of Les Savy Fav is probably the most obvious manifestation of all this. But the sudden prominence of a sloppy-as-hell garage band from Atlanta is definitely another.


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Editor's Letter

Inside this month's new Uncut…


A month, perhaps, of surprises. On the rather intimidating new Scott Walker and Sunn O))) album, there appears to be a joke about Michael Flatley's testicles. Somewhere in the elevated aesthetics of Kate Bush's Before The Dawn, there's an equally dubious comedy routine that hinges on the...