John Mulvey

Dennis Wilson's "Bambu"



It can be quite easy to be sceptical about the endless wave of deluxe reissues that come Uncut’s way most weeks: classic, economical albums stretched over two discs, full of variegated b-sides and out-takes that rarely add much to an artist’s story, really. I am, of course, a big enough nerd to get excited about, say, the juggled alternate mix of Love’s “Forever Changes” that arrived recently. But to be honest, listening to this stuff is like watching a good documentary on BBC4; at the end of it, I feel like I know more about an esoteric corner of history, but I hardly need to watch it again.


Read More >>

John Mulvey

Peter Walker Live In London



If the internet is to be trusted, the guitarist Peter Walker has not played a gig in the UK since 1962. In the interim, he has befriended Karen Dalton, Sandy Bull and Janis Joplin, provided instrumental accompaniment for Dr Timothy Leary’s early LSD experiments, learned the art of raga from Ravi Shankar in the same class as George Harrison, and spent nearly four decades in a truck in Woodstock, chiefly practising flamenco guitar.


Read More >>

John Mulvey

The 16th Uncut Playlist Of 2008



I'm just playing an old record by the great folk/psych/raga guitarist Peter Walker, who has recently returned to action after nearly 40 years of, as far as I can tell from a quick circuit round the internet, practising flamenco guitar. Amazingly, Walker - one of the few survivors of John Fahey's generation of American primitives, and the man who provided musical accompaniment to Timothy Leary's early experiments - is playing just down the road from me in Dalston, North-East London tonight.


Read More >>

John Mulvey

The Fall: "Imperial Wax Solvent"



I’ve just finished reading the second bunch of extracts from Mark E Smith’s autobiography in this morning’s Guardian, and I must confess to being a bit disappointed. I guess “Renegade: The Lives And Tales Of Mark E Smith” could have gone two ways: a dense and profoundly untrustworthy surrealist tract that followed on from those vividly impenetrable things he used to write for NME as Roman Totale back in the ‘80s; or a massively extended Smith rant, the contents of which we’ll be generally familiar with after three decades of admittedly entertaining interviews.


Read More >>

John Mulvey

White Denim: "Workout Holiday"



It’s quite a good time for new bands at the moment in our corner of the world, what with Bon Iver and Fleet Foxes riding a mild wave of critical acclaim in the wake of South By Southwest and so on. To that list we can add White Denim, another hit at SXSW that I’ve already written about here a while back.


Read More >>

Michael Bonner

What Happens When Movie Stars Make Records



Leafing through last week's edition of Entertainment Weekly during a quiet moment in the office, I came across a three-quarter page spread devoted to a new band called She & Him. The "Him" here is M Ward while -- and this is what piqued my curiousity -- the "She" is Zooey Deschanel, the American indie actress who made her rep in David Gordon Green's brilliant All The Real Girls.

It struck me, following on from Scarlett Johannson's album of Tom Waits' covers, that this is the second time in as many months an alt-Hollywood "It" Girl has made a record. Which, inevitably, led me to wonder why exactly the good ladies and gentlemen of the movie industry feel the need to divert their talents out of their immediate comfort zone and into the world of music.


Read More >>

John Mulvey

Portishead Live In London



I guess it’s become a cliché over the years that, when a Bristol band affiliated to trip-hop make a comeback, they should be somehow darker, and heavier, as if the magisterial doom that they all conjured up from the start somehow wasn’t enough.


Read More >>

John Mulvey

The 15th Uncut Playlist Of 2008



This week's playlist, then. The Dennis Wilson record is a bootleg, incidentally - the expanded "Pacific Ocean Blue", with the first official release of those "Bambu" tracks, is due in the office any minute now. Tonight, I'm going to see Portishead, so I'll endeavour to report back first thing tomorrow morning.


Read More >>

John Mulvey

New Books By Thurston Moore And Mark Kozelek



A couple of interesting books turned up in this morning’s post. Mark Kozelek sent me his collected lyrics, “Nights Of Passed Over”, which also comes with a CD of live and rare recordings, a nice complement to the excellent Sun Kil Moon album which I blogged about last week.


Read More >>

John Mulvey

Animal Collective's "Water Curses"



Strangely, Animal Collective seemed to take a mild critical poke for "Strawberry Jam" last year, perhaps due in part to the extravagant blog love for the Panda Bear solo album, "Person Pitch", which preceded it by a few months.


Read More >>

Newsletter


Editor's Letter

Robert Plant, Tom Petty, The Beatles, King Crimson, Bobby Womack: inside the new Uncut!


Welcome to the new issue of Uncut! John’s on holiday this week – he was last seen disappearing into darkest Gloucestershire – so it falls to me to show you around this month's edition instead.

Our exclusive cover story finds us catching up with Robert Plant...