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Womad 2014 review exceptional: classic energy and ebullience

From Sinéad O'Connor and Salif Keita, the Gloaming and 9Bach, to emotional reunions, supergroups and furry stovepipe hats: this was a vintage Womad.

Robin Denselow | The Guardian

Womad 2014: Sinéad O'Connor, review: 'joyous'

Sinéad O'Connor stepped up with power and candour to fill the late Bobby Womack's slot at Womad, says Bernadette McNulty

Bernadette McNulty | The Telegraph

Space is the place again as a new generation of artists embrace Afrofuturism

Janelle Monáe has taken the philosophy into the mainstream, while the likes of Flying Lotus are pushing the spirit of Sun Ra and Jimi Hendrix further forwardEarlier this year, the producer King Britt picked up his phone and started dialling. He was...

Lanre Bakare | The Guardian

Sweet Visitor review Nancy Kerr veers from the outstanding to the drab

(Little Dish)Fiddler, singer and English folk stalwart Nancy Kerr delivers a solo debut of all original material, though you wouldn't know as much, so steeped are its songs in the tunes and diction of tradition. Kerr's poised vocals, spirited violin...

Neil Spencer | The Guardian

Sten Sandell/Paal Nilssen-Love: Jacana review fearless jazz improv

(Rune Grammofon)Health and safety warning this is a completely improvised live set from the duo of Norwegian percussion volcano Paal Nilssen-Love and Swedish pianist Sten Sandell. Jacana, recorded at Norway's Kongsberg jazz festival last year,...

John Fordham | The Guardian

Les Ambassadeurs du Motel de Bamako review one of Africa's great bands

(Sterns)Released to coincide with their historic reunion shows, this is an exquisite double-album reminder of the early days of one of Africa's greatest bands. Les Ambassadeurs were assembled in the early 1970s by a senior member of the Mali's military...

Robin Denselow | The Guardian

#511 Me and the City – The Wild Ones

Imagine living in a town which was named after a beer. Or at least shared a name with a beer. You must be thirsty all the time. Such is the fate of Californian band Me and the City, who come…Read more →

For Folk's Sake | Ian Parker

BOOK REVIEW: Mark Robertson - Off Key

Mark Robertson - Off Key (Matador, 322pp., £8.99. Book Review by Chris Parker) The strapline on the cover of this, drummer Mark Robertson’s first novel (though he has an award-winning TV play under his belt), claims that Off Key is ‘the greatest story...

Chris Parker | LondonJazz

Loudon Wainwright III: Haven't Got the Blues (Yet)

Loudon Wainwright III is the closest the Americana tradition gets to a stand-up comedian.

Jasper Rees | The Artsdesk

That's It! review New Orleans's Preservation Hall Jazz Band know not to change a thing

Founded in 1961 as a platform for veteran New Orleans musicians, Preservation Hall bears nightly witness to the city's unique musical tradition, constantly changing but ever the same.

Dave Gelly | The Guardian