New Music Reviews – May

+-*Radiohead – A Moon Shaped Pool (XL Recordings) Many would argue Radiohead have one poor album. Whether it’s a twenty-three year old album or a five year old one is much debated. Now that album number nine, A Moon Shaped Pool is here, the debate must begin again afresh. So is it a dud? Well, […]

New Music – February

+-*  Rihanna – ANTI (Roc Nation) This is nominally an R&B album by one of the biggest Pop stars in the world, whether you’d actually know either of those things on hearing the album is quite another question. Jam packed with stylistic shifts, short tracks, and heady energy, ANTI is an incredible work that accentuates […]

New Music – January

+-*  Yorkston/Thorne/Khan – Everything Sacred (Domino) Here’s a Folk supergroup if ever there was one, comprised of the Domino regular and highly respected Scottish Folk musician John Yorkston, the Classical singer and sarangi player Suhail Yusuf Khan, and the Jazz bassist Jon Thorne, best known for his time working with the Electronica duo Lamb. ‘Everything […]

Museum Piece: K-Mart Muzak is archived

+-*We are categorically not in the business of creating or distributing ‘background music’. The music we deliver to our venues is curated, considered, and most importantly, interesting. We believe in quality, community, and prioritise passion for music above all else. We are not Muzak. That said, we respect the certain kitsch-factor of old school ‘elevator […]

The Best New Music 2015

+-*Here’s our run down of our favourite releases of the past year. Each one has featured heavily across our venues, and there should be a little something for everyone. It’s been a great year, and after last year’s list stretched out to 20 albums we had to work extra hard to try and be a little […]

New Music – November

+-*Roots Manuva – Bleed (Big Dada) Now on album number seven, if you exclude his top class dub albums, Roots Manuva has spent two decades developing a distinctive and equally inventive Hip Hop style that rarely drops in quality. Bleed is dark and introspective in a thoughtful, considered manner with the sort of self-reflective lyrics […]

Wahaca’s Day of the Dead approaches…

+-*Open Ear favourites Wahaca are bringing music, art, film, culture, and of course brilliant Mexican street food together in a festival package in a celebration of modern Mexican culture on the 7th November. That means it’s just about in time to coincide with the traditional Day of the Dead festivities. Featuring performances from UK bands […]

Heroes to Zeroes: MIDI data used to classify genre

+-*An article recently published in the esteemed MIT Technology Review has brought us disappointment; we’ve just missed the start of the new school year and we’ve been inspired to take up studying again. So, with no real knowledge of computer science, and the most tenuous of grasps on information sciences, we’re going to attempt to […]

New Music – October

+-*  Yumi Zouma – EP Collection (Cascine) We’ve had the first EP by Yumi Zouma in our catalogue for a while now but somehow the second slipped by us. Thankfully we’ve caught this reissue of both EPs, and we’re glad to be able to make sure you don’t miss out on it either. With the […]

6 ways your brain processes music

+-*A study at Lund University in Sweden identified six ways the brain processes music. We found them quite interesting… Brainstem Reflex – Instinctive responses to musical properties such as volume; e.g. when a sudden volume shift makes you jump. Emotional Contagion – When we ‘feel’ the emotion in music; e.g. The ‘blue’ notes in a […]